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Staff Sergeant Smith's case was an extreme one, however there are some positives that come along with doing the tape test.When you are faced with the task of finding the body fat of 100 soldiers, it is the cheapest and easiest way. Lieutenant General Mark Hertling, the creator of the Army’s Soldier Athlete program, who also has a master’s degree in exercise physiology, said "maybe one out of 100 might have a good argument.One female soldier consistently taped at 32% body fat (barely in regulation) but had a dunk tank score of 21%.
But it happens anyways." Other branches of the military are facing similar difficulties as BCP enrollees and discharges are on the rise; in 2011, the Department of Defense. Even the Marine Corp has doubled the number of discharges due to BCP since 2011.
Staff Sergeant Jeff Smith found himself in a tricky spot in 2009 when he was admitted to the Marine Corp Body Composition Program.
An article by Staff writer Jon Anderson dives even deeper into this topic.
In May 2013, the source he writes for, Tape test protest: One Marine takes his body-fat fight to the top, measured 10 service members both using a tape test and a hydrostatic dunk tank, one of the most accurate ways to gauge body fat.
The FM originated as a way to enforce standards across units and ensure soldiers are at "an optimum level of individual readiness" (AR 600-9, 3).
The Army program requires soldiers to meet a prescribed body fat level, indicated in the table below, dependent on gender, height, and age. If those numbers do not fall in the respective guidelines, a method called 'taping' is used to further determine body fat.
They should have everything they need in order to achieve success.
The problem, however, lies with the people that aren't actually overweight, but still do not meet weight standards.
They receive monthly weigh-ins and body percentage checks to ensure that they are on track.
They are referred to nutritionists and physical trainers as well as regularly checked up on by their coach for guidance.