Frequently Asked Questions



1)    What is the Physical Fitness Test?

The Physical Fitness Test is a state-mandated test to be administered to 5th, 7th, & 9th grade students annually in California public schools, including charter schools.


2)   Why is this test mandated?

The California Education Code mandates physical education for all students in grades one through nine, plus one additional year in high school. A recent study conducted by the California Department of Education (CDE) show a distinct relationship between academic achievement and the physical fitness of Californiaís public school students. This statewide study provides compelling evidence that the physical well-being of students has a direct impact on their ability to achieve academically.


3)   When is the test administered?

This test must be administered during the months of February, March, April, or May.

IEM Schools administer the PFT in conjunction with STAR testing for logistical reasons.


4)   Who must take the test?

All students in grades 5, 7, and 9 must take the test. Students who are physically unable to take all elements of the test are expected to take as many as their condition permits.


5)   What does the test cover?

The test assesses six major health-related areas of physical fitness including aerobic capacity (cardiovascular endurance), body composition (percentage of body fat), abdominal strength and endurance, trunk strength and flexibility, upper body strength and endurance, and overall flexibility.


The following exercises are administered in order to satisfy the test requirements:

1)   one mile run/walk (if student cannot run total distance, walking is permitted).

2)   height and weight documented (data is put into a formula to determine body fat percentage).

3)   curl-up

4)   trunk lift

5)   push-up

6)   shoulder stretch