PX To Replace 5BX In SAF & Focus On Core Strengthening

Since the 1970s, soldiers in the Singapore Armed Forces (SAF) have greeted the start of their days with the five basic exercises (5BX).

Consisting of exercises like jumping jacks, push-ups, and running, 5BX was meant to get soldiers conditioned for the day’s activities.

However, the Ministry of Defence (MINDEF) announced that following a 2-year trial, 5BX will be retired in favour of a new set of exercises.

The Prehabilitation Exercises (PX) is said to be more flexible than 5BX, and trials have seen a decrease in injuries.

5BX to be phased out in favour of PX

Historically, 5BX was performed in the morning by soldiers and consisted of the following:

  • jumping jacks
  • high jumper
  • crunches
  • push-ups
  • running

However, PX instead focuses on core-strengthening exercises and stretches, according to MINDEF.

They are said to help reduce the risk of musculoskeletal injuries, which affect muscles, ligaments, tendons, and bones.

PX should help reduce injuries as well as improve flexibility and mobility for the day’s activities.

According to test group results conducted at the Officer Cadet School (OCS) earlier this year, injuries were reduced from 6.3% with 5BX to 2.6%.

Meanwhile, fitness test results remained comparable between the test group and control group.

PX to be done daily in the morning

PX will be introduced to all units by the end of the year, according to The Straits Times (ST).

Currently, about 90% of trainers and units have adopted PX.

They get to pick between 2 exercise programmes, with each exercise done for 30 seconds with a slow tempo.

This contrasts with 5BX, which is high tempo and consists of high-intensity exercises.

PX workouts can be done at any time of the day as well while remaining less strenuous than 5BX.

Increasing fitness and reducing injuries with PX over 5BX

Soldiers over the years will be familiar with 5BX and their intense workouts.

However, PX focuses on stretching exercises that help in flexibility and reduce injuries, while maintaining fitness levels.

This reduction of injuries should make our army even more efficient and allow soldiers to perform their tasks better than before.

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Featured image adapted from MINDEF.