Physical Training Instructor’s Vest

Physical fitness instructors are essential in all the armed forces in keeping the men and women of the services in good physical shape. They run gym sessions, organise sports events and are usually seen in a tracksuit and sports vest. These vests are white sleeveless designs, with red edging and a central badge:

The badge consists of a pair of crossed sabres with a crown above and has been the insignia of the Royal Army Physical Training Corps since the Second World War:

The vests come packaged in cellophane from the factory in China:

The stores label on the packaging shows the large Chinese clothing company of Cooneen Defence made these garments:

A label with the NSN number and sizing printed on:

The white and red vests are very distinctive and allow all personnel to easily spot members of the RAPTC in the gym or on the running track:

The Royal Army Physical Training Corps advertised for recruits in 2015 with the following post on social media:

Have you got what it takes to be a Physical Training Instructor (PTI) in the Army?The skills required to successfully pass the All Arms PTI Course include leadership, comradeship, enthusiasm, respect, integrity and team spirit. These will all come with the experience gained by working in arduous environments and within a team, in whichever part of the Army you join first.

#You need to gain the relevant skills, fitness and experience required for the All Arms PTI Course, which is held at the Army School of Physical Training in Aldershot, or at Sennelager for personnel stationed in Germany. There is no minimum term to serve before you can apply to take the Course.

You have to demonstrate that you are fit enough, have the qualities of a non-commissioned officer, and have the aptitude to make an instructor.

At the end of the course you will know how the body works, the principles of physical training and be able to conduct all types of fitness training and testing. You will also be entitled to wear the crossed swords badge on your uniform, which indicates you are a qualified PTI. You also gain qualifications that are recognised outside of the Army, which will give you transferable skills when you leave.

Passing the All Arms PTI Course is a major hurdle, but doing so then allows you to work as a PTI within your own unit, or to be posted as a PTI to a training establishment. You will have an extremely important role to play and other soldiers and Officers will look to you for sound advice on health and fitness issues. Gaining experience as an instructor is vital if you plan to further your career as a PTI.

One comment

  1. Thanks, that helped me to identify two men on a WW2 photo. But I can’t believe British army uniforms are made in China !?

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