Feb 18, 2009

The SAF Needs To Fix Its RT System

An email from one of my readers.

Hi Mr. Wang,

My name is Lim. I'm a normal [XX]-year old graduate working in a normal company and living a very normal life. Basically, I'm a nobody.

I'm sure we're all familiar with National Service and Reservist and how we positively hate how the gahmen still manages to intrude into our personal life even after we've served our NS liability.

Here's my story.

After I left the army, I became unfit and unable to pass my IPPT. I knew I had to pass my IPPT in order to avoid remedial training which is 8 sessions of physical training. Thus I started running and getting some exercise.

My birthday falls in [XXXXXXX] and I started training somewhere in [YYYYYYY].
By [XXXXX] I was confident of passing my IPPT. Unfortunately, I pulled my
hamstring in [XXXXX] and I was unable to do the test.

( I know at this point Mindef will point out that's just an excuse and I could have done the test earlier. Even a medical certificate would have been rebuffed. FINE. Not going to argue).

I was hauled down to Mindef and slapped with a S$100 fine. (Not going to argue).

So they sent me to this lady who told me to select dates for my remedial training. I had 3 options (twice a week)

1) Monday 6pm to 10pm / Sat 10am to 2pm

2) Wed 6pm to 10pm / Sat 4pm to 8pm

3) Thur 6pm to 10pm / Sunday 4pm to 8pm

Note that they assume everyone can get off work at five (You have to be there half an hour early). I think they got us confused with Australia.

Here is the catch, you can only pick one of the options. You can't under any circumstances mix and match the dates. For example I can't take Monday evening from option 1 and put it together with Wed evening from option 2.

All the options were bad for me, due to work / family commitments but I simply had to pick one (FINE, not going to argue).

I suggested to the lady if I could just take my test, pass it, and avoid all of this nonsense. And she replied with a smile "I'm sorry, our system won't allow you to take your test until you have completed your RT". (A system designed by scholars no doubt).

So basically I HAVE to do the RT no matter what. EVEN if I can pass the test. Here's what really irritates me. (sorry I'm getting there).

1) The S$100 fine is to punish me. (or they just want my money)

2) The inflexibility of the schedules is insipid, why can't they let us choose which dates we can do the RT? After all, if we do it twice a week it shouldn't matter at all. (So i guess, its just to punish me since i'm at fault)

3) I have to attend the RT, even if i'm willing to take the test immediately. If I miss a single RT date, they'll fine me again (Who saw that coming? An opportunity for them to make more money)

My question is: Are Mindef simply interested in making us 1) fighting fit or are they just trying to 2) punish us and 3) take away our money.

Maybe all of the above since I'm a terrible citizen for missing my IPPT. I deserve it.

P.S I know this is a rather unimportant issue compared to the other sociological / economic issues on your blog.

Best regards,
Lim

In the above email, I have deliberately obscured a few details, (as you can see with the "XXXXXX" and "YYYYYY") in case some overly clever person at Mindef decides that he must do some investigation to ascertain who Lim is, and have him charged under the notorious, all-encompassing Section 25 of the SAF Act.

NSmen, if you have any other issues or problems with the Remedial Training system, please feel free to provide your feedback in the comment section. If there are enough substantive comments from you readers, I will collate them and pass them to the Singapore government.

98 comments:

Rob said...

Over the last 8 years, I've gone through RT, IPT, and now am in the E1 PEP program.

AFAIK, while the 'official' start time of the RT program is at 6 pm, typically there's some flexibility as they understood people were rushing from work. During my time, the in-processing clerks allowed persons coming as late as 6:20 pm to join in.

The rationale IIRC then about not allowing NS men to pick and choose which days to do their RT was to avoid situations where people will pick Mon, Tues, Weds nights when it came to Phase 2 training.

Not sure what the situation is like now. Since 2006 I was no longer on RT but went on the IPT program (which starts later at 7 pm - easier for people), and this year on the E1 PEP training.

dreamrain said...

Hi Mr Wang,

I have not had my IPPT nor went through any IPPT so far.

But I can foreseee the pain if I have to go for such training on a weekday evening. It will simply clash with my working hours. I work in a bank and it is not uncommon that my hours starts from 9, ends at 8 or 9pm.

Since they are providing IPPT on Saterdays, shouldn't they consider allowing RT on Saterdays too? I am fine with sacrifices (such as a Sat or Sun) so long as it does not affect my work. Work is our lifeline and our future depends on that.

The idea of punishment is out-dated because :

i) There can be many reasons why an individual is unable to meet the one-year deadline. Their execuse of saying why didn't you take the IPPT earlier is akin to say "why didn't I buy 4-D for yesterday's draw where the number coincides with my house number".

ii)In the past, our fathers would have no problem reaching the RT centres by 6pm since their working hours are much shorter as compared to now.

Thanks.

dreamrain said...

Hi Mr Wang,

One other thing. Can you please elaborate on the violation of xxx law if SAF managed to identify the writer for writing in?

I think I have heard about that before, but not sure of the details. If I had went through the right chain of command to my CO and my request is rejected, can I air my greifs by writing a letter to ST Forum?

Thanks again.

singaporecitizen said...

saf needs to fix more than just the RT system. they need to relook the entire system of conscription and its relevancy in Singapore.

Roy said...

Yes that's why the JCS (I personally disagree in-principle that it will help the workers, but understand that any help is better than none in the grand scheme of things) should not be applicable to PRs AND Singaporeans.

The RTs, ICTs and other NS related liabilities that a Singaporean male has makes them less desirable than PRs and females who have none of these. Why are we having policies that cripple the competitiveness of those who had sacrificed 2 years of their life for their countries?

Can our ministers who require million of dollars to serve our country explain why our policies so skewed against those who served and will serve without the same obscene remuneration?

Anonymous said...

You don't get fined if you failed your test. You get fined (charged) if you don't bother to turn up for a test. Keyword in their eyes is that the soldier "did not bother to present himself at a test".

Anonymous said...

I failed my IPPT 2 years ago. But I thought once you pass IPPT, you dont have to continue the RT. For my case, I was in phrase 2. During the phrase, there will be occasional IPPT test and if you pass it, you are out of the program. I agree the starting time is kind of silly though. As for the 2 days per week combo, you can choose any one first. For me, I simply call the IPPT center and change date and so my IPPT both falls on the weekend.

BillyBong said...

Having done RT once,(and i stayed fit so i never ever had to do that again) i can sympathize with 'Lim' for his experience, especially the part about getting fined as a 'punishment', not being able to mix/match the suitable dates and the draconian measures to ensure you show up at RT etc.

Just to share, the $100 fine is the result of being 'charged'; you are actually issued an official 'summons' to stand before a SAF officer to answer your charges...most of the time, it's just a meek 'sorry, my mistake, i was on MC, blah blah'...then you are ushered straight into the world of RT, dans fine.

From an honest standpoint, i did feel that RT was beneficial - access to free Gym facilities was a plus. And the PTI are really helpful (PS: most of them are NSF anyway) and they really focus on your fitness ; most of the time, they are usually chin-ups or running.

On the flip side, i can understand that people have timing issues after work, transportation problems, and a ton of other reasons why they find RT a drag.

The main crux is this: NS isn't democracy - we go by rank and file. Decisions made are not in everyone's best interest, usually so. While we may abhore the way our SAF does things, imagine the anarchy that unfolds if everyone wanted to do things his own way in a military camp.

yamizi said...

dreamrain,

There are already RT session on weekends. If you miss one session in your weekday evenings, you have to make up either at another weekday evening slot or a weekend slot. A weekend slot cannot be made up by a weekday evening slot. There is a limited number of make up sessions that you can do. I'm not sure about this part.

RT is suppose to be completed within the first 5 months (or 6?) when your new IPPT window starts.

I did mine last year from Feb to Apr. I did both phases because I didn't clear my IPPT during the phase 1 IPPT. Phase 1 is 8 session for 4 weeks, consisting of one weekday evening and 1 weekend slot.

Phase 2 is 12 sessions for 4 weeks, consisting of 2 weekday evenings and 1 weekend. There is an IPPT during the first week in Phase 2, if you can clear that, then you're free to go.

Mon, Wed and Fri already had to attend class, then Tues, Thurs and Sun (4pm to 8pm, what weird timing) to RT.

No life.

I had to excuse myself from work an hour earlier just to reach the Fitness Conditioning Centre in time. Late comers got to stay back to receive extra training.

Pro-IPPT people will advice you to go for IPT (IPPT Preparatory Training). If I'm not wrong it consists of 10 session but I'm not sure with the timeline that you have to meet. IPT starts at a latter time (not sure is it 7 or 8).

The difference is, IPT is considered as a volunteer programme, so they do not pay you. IPPT, seems to be a sort of punishment by making you to attend the training, they do pay you (I think the rate is in accordance to your rank).

I don't think RT had in anyway help me in my fitness. After RT, I had knee pain more frequently. The orthopedic specialist that I had visited told me my weight (101kg back then) is not suitable to do running I should do swimming instead. I told the doc I got IPPT to do. He simply shrugged and smiled.

I went for a session of physiotheraphy, the therapist told me not only I am not suitable to do running, I should avoid impact motion like standing board jump. I told him I got IPPT to clear. His reaction was the same as the doc.

What to do?

In my head, the primary reason to slim down is that I can survive my IPPT without hurting my knees any more. Whatever reasons, like reduce cholesterol, looking good and confidence, etc, to me becomes secondary.

I pity the FS (Fitness Specialists, formerly known as PTI) who conduct the RT sessions. They know no one is interested. You should go there and feel the whole hall of lethargy. Very negative. I felt worse than doing my NS.

Anyway, NSmen are not full time sportsmen. What makes them think that after a day's work, we are in the condition to go through a 4-hour (by book) or a 2-hour (in practice) training? I'm not some national team shuttlers who get professional pay to just to be fit okay?

Everyone has a different lifestyle, physical condition, etc, that contributes to his fitness and weight. I probably have to work much harder than others to perform well in running and standing board jump. So is it fair to me that in order to pass, I have to fork out that extra time which I could use it on doing other things?

I attempted an IPPT in Dec last year. A very interesting thing happened. You're not allow to fallout during 2.4km run. No idea why. What if one of these NSmen really cannot endure the run and collaspe?

During my BMT, I witness someone died by doing 2.4km run. So to me, staying alive is the most important and top most priority thing. It's just unfortunate that when we fail to meet their standard, we will face irritations and frustrations like RT.

This is the agony of a true-blue Singaporean combat-fit-cum-IPPT-liable male who fail IPPT.

Sidetrack a little, Mr Adrain Goplan, do you want to go through this? Or do you wish your sons to go through this?

Anonymous said...

Just some regulars/scholars trying to make sure they have statistics for their KPI's and to give the impression that defense is important. In the meantime, we have all those PR's, FT's hitting the pubs from 6 pm mah.

StupidGenius said...

you won't be fine money if u miss 1 RT session. Even 2. They know that people will miss session due to unforseen circumstances. Just arrange for a make up promptly. And make up can be on any days.

However, if you miss too many sessions without make up, that's where they'll take your money. But if you foresee you'll miss a lot of sessions, u can even defer your RT. And 1 month into your RT, you can take the IPPT.

I don't think the whole purpose is to take your $100. It's not even enough to pay the man hour rate of the officer charging you. And to have 3 training centers for RT, and the numerous PTIs and support staff. And they have to pay you allowance for coming to RT. Don't think it will earn alot from your fines.

The system is not perfect. Everybody will have different constraints. It works fine for some, sucks for others I guess.

Wendy said...

What is there left to defend?

Anonymous said...

Firstly, dont be a moron and wait till last min to take the test. You have ONE WHOLE YEAR to take. Your injury during your last min is your bloody problem. I don't pity such guy at all.

Secondly, just book any of the schedule. You can do make up at any of the dates. Basically, you can skip lessons and make up on Monday,Wed,Thurs,Sat or Sunday. If you like, you can do 5 RTs per week.

Ape said...

I've attended RT twice... not that I'm proud of it though but here's some things that is not written in black and white. I think yamazi has covered the written rules.

First thing first, always be punctual or even early on your first RT session. PTIs will brief you everything you'll need to know, including the unofficial matters.

In my last RT, I was told that one could defer up to 2 RT sessions. For example, your first RT session is on Tuesday and you attended but you know that you can't make it on Sat, so you inform the PTI that you'll need to defer 2nd session to Sun. The trick here is if you defered the 6th and 7th session and attended the 8th (i.e. the IPPT RT session) and passed, you may not need to do make up lesson for your 6th and 7th session (NOTE: There's no black and white on this)

Another thing is your employer cannot hold you back when you need to attend RT. It's an offense to do so. However, that means your employer can probable sack you should you attend RT every single year with some excuse that you're always not around :p

If you do some careful planning, you can miss some RT sessions officially! Keep a look out for holidays and make sure your RT sessions falls on as many holidays as possible.

Although it's stated that every session lasts 4 hours, you don't really stay there all 4 hours.

Yes, yes, there are many like Lim who can really pass IPPT or even get a gold medal but somehow or another, did not take IPPT and so became defaulters (pay fine and attend at least 8 sessions).

So my best advice to everyone is always attempt IPPT as soon as your window starts, even if you know you'll fail - this is to ensure that you don't have to pay fine. Don't wait till last moments because the following could stop you from taking IPPT:
a) all centres fully booked
b) bad weather
c) you injured yourself just before IPPT (like Lim) or fell sick on that day
d) that day happened to be the day busiest at work (your boss need you to be around to secure a billion dollar project?) :p

If for whatever reasons you have to take RT, be punctual on the first day of RT... PTIs will give you all the FAQ you'll need to get through with it as quickly as possible.

Remember, PTIs are also human. They are seeing more and more RT trainees and they just want to get as many people out (of RT) as possible.

Personally, I made it a point to train early (I did that) and take IPPT on the first opportunity... even with that in mind and ready, something unexpected occur - I was sent overseas for a couple of months AND I've to take FFI - which means close to 3 months has passed... imagine if I had waited later... 3rd time going for RT?

P/S BTW, Lim, RT is actually 20 sessions - 8 in PhaseA and 12 in PhaseB. If you have no problem with IPPT, just endure the 8 sessions. All the best to you.

Anonymous said...

Wang, a few points:

1) IPPT was first created by Singapore Sports Council. Means it is not for military, but for SPORTS. SAF may or may not have modified the standards. But to expect the entire male population to be held to a sports benchmark, is ridiculous isn't it? And we need FT to compete in Olympics.

2) At a point in time, the IPPT standards were MOVED upwards. It was by an ROD date, not by year of birth. Wa, how come some people who ORD later, but may be same age or older, is fitter than those who ORD earlier?! Very scientific, very scholistic indeed.

3) Why can't SAF work with the RCs? Institute a 30 day attendance in a year programme for us to get fit. That way, the RCs get to know their residents too, plus more residential participation and unity. And PAP contorls the RCs right? Helps them in elections what! And the RC people always cow peh say people not forthcoming. SAF fault mah.

Yours lovingly

hojiber the lazy to login

James said...

Well i just finish the latest IPT just two weeks and the PTI gave us a shocking news at the end of the IPT. He said that the whole IPPT and RT system may change in the near future. They are debating to change or add IPPT to a few options

here are three of the options the PTI told us but it is not confirmed yet
1) attend a SAF half marathon
2)Change IPPT to road march!!!!
3) no more PTI they want to ask civilian etc californian fitness center example to conduct the RT

The PTI say all these are still under discussion and not sure when if any will be finalished but i hope option 2 never occur it will be shocking for a 30+ guy to go road march

Anonymous said...

All I just want to say is I'm not a born runner. The IPPT hinges on running that 2.4km and nothing else for me.

Back in BMT, it took all of 3 months for me to pass and get the monetary award. Not even the Gold monetary. This was running everyday and training for the IPPT.

Fast forward to today. No time to train everyday, no motivation and more importantly, commitments elsewhere. Forget about what other people say, other people are their own's business.

I think this IPPT business needs a relook. Not everybody has fitness that can be measured with so many different tests.

Anonymous said...

Am currently on the RT programme, and the OC at the FCC I'm attending has kindly informed us that our RT program for NSmen will be undergoing quite a major change.

For example (this is by no means official, but speculation), allowing your IPPT liability for the year to be taken off if you successfully complete the Army half marathon (or similar) with a certain timing. Or complete a 4km route march with FBO within a certain timing.

A shift in stance in putting the responsibility back to the NSmen: this might mean you might be required to clear 10 sessions within a time frame of 9 months, with flexibility on dates, venues and timings. Basically the onus is back on the NSmen to be physically fit.

Apparently, official announcements should be made in Parliament sometime this year.

Parka said...

This is directed to the letter contributor.

Think of ways to help yourself because chances are SAF won't change their rules for you anytime soon.

If you don't want to go for RT, just pass the IPPT. What can be more difficult to understand?

Stop making up excuses like you have no time to train. It's because you have no discipline to train.

And in my opinion, paying a fine isn't a punishment. If I'm SAF, I'll do away with the fine and ask you to come back for an additional 2 more sessions for every one you miss. I'll waste your time, which is more precious than money.

Can't meet the RT timings? Take off from work then. Boss won't be happy? WAAAAIIIT! Rewind to why you didn't pass the IPPT in the first place again.

--

Personally, I have to take IPPT every year also. But I make it a point to pass.

Time's too precious to be spent rotting in camp. Time's cheap in there.

Anonymous said...

It's definitely a stupid system. Their assumption is that ppl who didnt take IPPT is because of the fitness level and not other circumstance like work, etc.

It simply didnt cater to ppl of the latter. It just showed how out of touch SAF is...

Anonymous said...

I have been to RT some years back simply because during the IPPT I overshot by 20 sec in the 2.4km run.

Somehow, I guess I know how you feel. Well, since you will be going for RT anyway, rather than bitching about it, try work up your psyche to beat the next test.

If I am not wrong you may be not be required to attend all sessions once you manage to pass the interim test which is after the 4th session.

Some more pointers for you.
* Please be punctual. You really dont want to be at the mercy of the Chief PTI. I have seen people wasted one trip just because of him or that system cannot handle your registration kind of nonsense.
* Wear socks. That very same Chief PTI can make you crazy with all sorts socks of reasons.

Improvement
* If those scholar is reading this, please have allocate a proper shower rooms.

Good Luck to You, Pal

Anonymous said...

The IPPT system assumes that everybody is able to achieve the required standards with training. Is that assumption true in the first place?

If it is indeed true, MINDEF should make it compulsory for all regulars to achieve GOLD standards as an example for the NSmen. Hey, all the running, PT, SOC are all considered part of their work during office hours. If they cannot even achieve the GOLD standard after all these training, how is it possible for all NS men to pass, considering that they have diverse commitments and their full-time job is not about training to defend the country.

Anonymous said...

Three Ayurvedic Doshas of India,
VATA, PITTA and KAPHA body types.

http://naturalmedicine.suite101.com/article.cfm/three_ayurvedic_doshas_of_india

http://www.holistichealthtopics.com/HMG/tradmed.html

If we are born with these types of bodies, we are born with these types of bodies.

Some people will grow fat no matter how health-conscious they are.

There are also people which no matter how hard they train, they will barely pass the ippt.

Because this is their body types.

Is it possible to have a country with all men which are fit and slim??

Don't we each have friends who seem to grow fatter and fatter every year?

Deep down inside, who doesn't wish to pass IPPT?Who likes to go RT?

So why torture these people year after year?

Telling people to "JUST PASS the IPPT if you don't wanna go RT" is like saying, "Hey, JUST get Distinctions for all your modules!"

Maybe our goverment could sponsor slimming and gym packages for those who fail??

Anonymous said...

When you were a student, was there any one subject you never were able to pass despite putting in all the time and effort (remedials in school, tuition at home and the likes) you ever could afford to?

What happened next? You continued to attend all these remedials, at times begrudgingly, at times helplessly? Did you not at times just go: "Why can't they just let me off on, and out of, this?"

Des

PanzerGrenadier said...

The reality is that the IPPT system is a one size fits all system. And the problem is NSmen are made of varying sizes and shapes and levels of fitness.

Mindef presents you with 2 choices:
a) get with the program and clear your IPPT within your window or
b)suffer the RT consequences.

Majority who are of reasonable health and fitness who train and clear each year don't have much problems. I managed to clear luckily because during the year that I failed, they converted to window system so I could re-take multiple tries within my window.

I also took advantage of the IPPT held at Safra gyms as the 2.4km could be run on the treadmill in air-conditioned comfort.

However, there will be some who cannot train, are fit for reservist but not fit enough to clear IPPT. For this group, if you have money and have some minor pre-existing condition, go see a specialist and get medically downgraded. This is the unofficial but very real way NSmen who cannot clear IPPT circumvent the system legally. It takes a bit of cash but is legal and as we age in 30s+, knee/joint problems are more common.

Always take care of your health. My unit saw 1 death from IPPT by a reservist during 2.4km. It's no fault of SAF but then perhaps if he didn't have to piah so hard for 2.4km he would still be around.

He was 32 years old.

Majullah Singapura.

yamizi said...

PanzerGrenadier,

My orthopedic specialist at SGH didn't do anything special to help me for a downgrade but he did give me an MC to excuse from running activities for 3 months.

I sent my MC to my unit medical centre for endorsement. Guess what happened?

I got a letter from that same medical centre in about 2 weeks' time after submitting my MC saying I'm fit for normal activities! Got no review or what. Of course I heck care it and only attempt my IPPT at a latter time when I think my knees were more okay.

But I thought they would at least have the courtesy to review me or something. I mean, how they know I'm fit for duty when whoever signed that said I'm fit? He's better than the orthopedic specialist?

The said...

hojiber the lazy to login
February 18, 2009 2:49 PM

/// 1) IPPT was first created by Singapore Sports Council. Means it is not for military, but for SPORTS. SAF may or may not have modified the standards. ///

Wrong, hojiber. IPPT was created by the SAF. The SSC was only formed in 1973, long after NS was introduced in Singapore. It is designed for the military. The SSC modified the IPPT from the SAF for fitness (not for sports). The SSC version is easier and for the general public & school children, etc.

/// But to expect the entire male population to be held to a sports benchmark, is ridiculous isn't it? And we need FT to compete in Olympics. ///

I do expect soldiers to be fitter than the general population. No, the IPPT is not a sports benchmark. It is for fitness and is a composite test. You can be a Olympic Table Tennis champion even if you ace the IPPT. Likewise, it cannot make you into a champion swimmer simply because it does not test swimming skills.

Mr Wang Says So said...

"I do expect soldiers to be fitter than the general population."

So do I. And actually I'm sure they are. Full-time soldiers, that is.

Not people who only put on a military uniform for a total of 1, 2 or 3 weeks a year.

Anonymous said...

@yamizi you can book for a medical review on the ns.sg website. Then when you see the MO you can present your case (helps if you have specialist letter) or long MC.

Anonymous said...

This is another example of how highly paid brains at the top made SOPs that are blindly followed by semi morons at the front desks. This is counter productive and will come back to haunt the highly paid government later on.
Another example is the airport incident where a mother and daughter were not able to get on the plane because airport security heard the wrong word and got frenzied.
A third example is the recent insistence by SGH to charge 90 dollars from a Dutch hero injured when saving a lady from drowning.
There are many more, some personal ones, but I will not share it here because these semi morons will suddenly turn into shrewd detectives who can track you down and give you endless troubles for highlighting their mistakes.
So the question is, are these really semi morons or are they just in slumber until they get their own personal motivation to turn brilliant?

Anonymous said...

Easy way to get out of all this IPPT/RT rubbish is migrate. I did that eight years ago, and have never seen the inside of an SAF camp ever since. Good riddance.

Anonymous said...

Possible reaction from the administrators:

These reservists need to
a. fix their attitude
b. wake up their ideas
c. start acting like soldiers
d. stop whining

Much of today's grief comes from systematic ignorance. Where symptoms are ignored/dismissed due to Lust, Gluttony, Greed, Sloth, Wrath, Envy, Pride. Are these observable in today's Elites?

The said...

/// Not people who only put on a military uniform for a total of 1, 2 or 3 weeks a year. ///

WSS, true generally, but that's the whole point about having IPPT for reservists (oops giving my age away, I mean operationally ready NS men). The whole idea of making you go for the annual test is just so that you maintain your fitness AT ALL TIME, not just a week or so before going for the IPPT. After BMT, and even after ROD (ORD), most servicemen are fit. The idea of making you go through the hoops once a year is to make sure that you keep that level of fitness. After, in an activation for actual combat, you cannot say, wait, give me a year or so to get my fitness back.

Err, Mr Wang, you don't need to put on a military uniform to go for a jog early in the morning or after work in the evening or during the weekends. Personally, I have never been to a gym, just a jog around the neighbourhood on Saturdays and Sundays. I am nearing the Senior Citizen's age and I don't have any problem with IPPT. Got award some time some more ah.

Waiter said...

Should have RTs in the mornings also. I am free in the mornings but evenings have to work. Some businessess operate later in the day.

yamizi said...

The,

If everyone can be fit by simply do some jog around the neighbourhood, then I think there will be no people who fail reservists.

The said...

yamizi, the key is consistency in exercising. Not just a jog before the IPPT. Likewise, may I ask you of those who fail, how many of them jog once a week consistently?

Anonymous said...

Is it not possible that someone who fails his IPPT (let's just assume he fails quite miserably) is able to trek 20 km with a GPMG during an exercise, and emerge still strong and fight well during the actual mission?

What about someone who passes his IPPT, perhaps even attaining the silver or gold award, but is not able to make it to the halfway point with his SAR21 on the same trekking route?

So, assuming both scenarios are possible, who is fit and who is not?

I've seen it happening in my last ICT.

Des

yamizi said...

anon @ February 20, 2009 4:15 PM ,

What you had described is the difference between what is call physical fitness and combat fitness.

The,

I don't have the stats, you've asked the wrong person.

My personal opinion is that, whether to get fit or not is a personal choice, it shouldn't be dictate by a law. But of course, in reality, for male Singaporean who are combat fit, they are bounded by such law.

Anonymous said...

Yamizi, yes, that was my point. Physical fitness vs combat fitness.

Someone pointed out that the purpose of instituting IPPT is to ensure you are fighting (read: combat) fit. So does it follow that since I can prove I am combat fit, it shouldn't even matter that I fail my IPPT, since by that logic, IPPT fitness comes before combat fitness, but now I'm already combat fit without passing IPPT? Which one is more important then? Passing IPPT but not being able to survive in outfield missions?

One can of course continue arguing for acquiring physical fitness before anything else, even if not for the army, at least for one's own health sake. No arguments about that from me though.

Getting fit is indeed one's own choice. I think the fact that we even bother to argue about all these things stems only from a commonality, i.e. the utter unhappiness over this thing called reservist.

Anonymous said...

Imagine you need to pass the same IPPT test when you are a full time "fit-as-a-bull" soldier and when you become a civilian, some of whom may be sitting under air-con environment from 9am to 6pm - the only difference being the age scale and this also applies to both full time soldiers and civilians again.

Defender said...

I like the RT system. It's such flawless system that even when you are fit, i would pay to attend. Your work is not important. RT is imperative.

Im a scholar and would like to get the gold medal for my career. So please defend this RT system and it will also help to defend our country.

Simply by following the instruction in the SOP. We will win the war.

RT is good, NSmen should be make to take IPPT thrice a year.

Wei Xiaobao said...

The best way to siam RT is to get downgraded. Don't be stingy on yourself. Go visit a specialist in a private clinic. If you have back pain, see a orthopedist. If you have gastric, go see a gastroenterology specialist. There are many specialists in Mount Elizabeth hospital. You can forget about specialists in SGH, NUH, CGH, TTSH, because they still have the cheng hoo mentality and will not recommend you for downgrade.

Agagooga said...

All is made clear once you realise that Slavery is about making you suffer

Anonymous said...

if you are going to defend the country in times of crisis, i truly hope you are fit. and even though physical fitness may not equate to combat fitness, there is a strong correlation, isnt it? there are bound to be exceptions for every correlation proposed, but what is more important is the strength of the correlation. if it is strong, i think it is reasonable to use phyiscal fitness as a gauge for combat fitness.

furthermore, work is a lousy excuse for a lack of fitness. time is for us to manage, not for us to buy or pray that there are more of. i believe there are plenty of working professionals who slog their guts out at work, and still have time for exercise, family & friends. maybe people who "dont have time" simply havn't learnt how to use time effectively, no?

with regards to the flexibility of the military system, or even the government system as a whole, one should not expect the entire country to bend backwards for an individual. yes, it does make sense for people to choose whichever RT dates they want, but think about the logistic issues for the people running the programme (ie to keep track of attendance and whatever else). what problems will it cost THEM?

if your response to the above paragraph runs along the lines of "the saf came up with the RT system what; so they should bear the additional cost and create the perfect system to suit everyone." well, then the only thing i have to say to you is, what a selfish creature. maybe people should stop thinking "me me me" and more "them".

lastly, stop blaming the government or the saf or the scholars for the problems that you face. how egoistic is it to assume that you are the only with issues.


wenxiu

Anonymous said...

@wenxiu:

So you feel that the will of the individual should be subjugated to that of the system/few running said system?

We've been through that before, and you can see just how well the USSR/Nazi Germany/Imperial Japan turned out.

Anonymous said...

Dear WenXiu

As u are aware, the plan is to dump your parent\grand parents in Malaysia. Assuming u are into Confucian values, war with our nothern neighbour is really out of the question.

As for our southern neighbour, buy a really big map of SE Asia and observe the our relative sizes. Pls understand that war is unwise and a swift and decisive victory (for us) is quite unlikely. As for deterrence, the rest of the world is abandoning conscription. Professional soldiers, paid to maintain their fitness, makes better soldiers. While the rest of us have our civilian lives, makes money to pay taxes and keep our army well fed\paid. Its simple economics.

Anonymous said...

I suspect that many of you will actually be passing your IPPT if you stop whining and start training for it.

Don't blame SAF for your laziness, lack of discipline and weak time management skills.

Don't you feel embarrassed when you are failing and your peers are passing?

Anonymous said...

"Jobs for Foreigners, NS for Sporeans"


recruit ong

Anonymous said...

I've encountered more Internet hardmen than I've in reality.

If many more people would be equally passionate when it comes to doing their jobs as they are when slamming people for being lazy/not exercising, many of this world's problems will be solved.

Anonymous said...

"Don't you feel embarrassed when you are failing and your peers are passing?"

Embarrassed ? Why should it be so ? Not when you are calling the shot and setting the parameters of what is right / wrong.

Legal Eagle said...

Rob: could you let us know how E1PEP compares to RT and IPT?

For sure IPT is better than RT since you attend less sessions (assuming RT phase 1 and 2) but how does E1PEP compare?

The on book hours of E1PEP is lesser than IPT, but is that also true in practice?

Other than the fact that you pay to join a gym of some sort, there is no other further information on E1PEP - would be grateful if you can share.

Anonymous said...

I don't know how you can siam RT/IPPT. But I do know how you can do that for your yet-to-be-born sons - make sure your wife give birth in Canada or USA. Citizenship by Birth! Lots of Taiwanese and Hong Kongers have been doing that for decades. Just read carefully, the next time you come across a news article about such and such an actress giving birth. What can be easier? Just a 12 hour flight will spare your son a life-time of agony. And it is not even more expensive than Singapore.

Oh, there is a bonus in it for you too - your son can apply Canadian/American PR for you when he turns 21. Give a few more years for you to get citizenship, and it's just about time to collect all your CPF money when you relinguish singapore citizenship.

See? At least two birds killed with one stone! Ha!

Anonymous said...

From a female point of view, NS is indeed outdated in SG. Just look at Taiwan, conscription has been reduced from 2 years to 1 year. China is just next door but who cares as they feel 1 year is just rite.

Also, look at France that has abolished conscription way back in the late 1990s, they rely on their Foreign Legion to fight their wars in French colonies in Africa & Carribean islands. They recruit from all over the world, they even have mainland Chinese in Foreign Legion too based on a recent article in International Herald Tribune. Best thing is they are a loyal force to France.

If Spore gahment day in day out keep punching their hands in the air & shouting "Foreigners good lah, come come, you Sinkie citizens better welcome them". My reply to gahment is that you might as well recruit these foreigners into our military to serve as regulars. If France can do it so can you. USA also has a mercenary force operating in Afghanistan & Iraq, if you think those TV images that you see are of true blue Americans, then you are wrong cos these are Pinoys, Hispanics & Caribbeans who do NOT hold US citizenship. Only upon completing their tour of duty would they be given USA citizenship. It was reported in the news recently that the USA could not have done without these mercenaries.

So Spore gahment can simply recruit from
China - since there are so many FTs from this country might as well make it more merry by recruiting shiploads of Chinese peasants from rural areas. They will be eternally grateful to serve Spore for the rest of their lives if you cloth & feed them & their families.

India & Nepal - ditto above for China.

Anonymous said...

hi~~ I thought of a solution to Lim's problem. Even if you injured your hamstring, report to IPPT still and look as if you got injured during the IPPT itself, will you then be punished?Because I injured during IPPT, will I still get fined?

Rob said...

Legal Eagle: E1 PEP is interesting; it costs you a bit ($267 with GST). I haven't been in it for long, but so far, I like the program. It's not regimental since it's conducted in the Safra gym by the E1 instructors. Small groups as well - there're about 10 of us in my schedule.

On the first session, we were taught how to use the different stations; and from the second session onwards, we were left on our own to exercise, with the instructors in the background watching, monitoring, offering advice etc.

The difference between this and the previous IPT/RT programs? I actually felt motivated to take this training seriously. The training cost 'incentive' I think is instrumental, as is also that the training isn't regimental.

I look around at the others in my group, and I don't see anyone malingering. Every person is actually making use of their time to train... on their own LOL.

The session hours is shorter yes, but because you waste far less time, the training is far more intensive than the RT or even IPT programs I've finished.

Who is it for? If you just want to get over IPPT obligation, then the IPT program is more suitable. IMO, the E1 seems intended for people who actually seriously want to train.

HanSolo said...

I think it's not difficult to pass the IPPT if you exercise regularly.

Unfortunately, most people don't do that, which is why they find IPPT a pain.

If we believe in the NS system, then this will be less of a pain.

However it's obvious from the comments here that the general sentiment is negative.

We don't believe in the NS system. We feel that it's outdated and takes away 2 years of our precious youth. We feel that it benefits foreigners to the detriment of Singaporeans. We feel like second-class citizens in our own homeland.

Complaining about IPPT is just the symptom, the real cause is our angst as Singapore citizens.

Anonymous said...

Just for information, since I do have some connections there.

In China, if you want to be conscripted or join the military, you have to bribe the PLA to let you in. Yup. You pay to get in.

That is why the Chinese are more than willing to get paid to be soldiers elsewhere. The mentality that the military is a good employer (unlike SG) makes them easier and more loyal recruits.

Anonymous said...

"Anonymous said on February 23, 2009 12:14 PM ... That is why the Chinese are more than willing to get paid to be soldiers elsewhere. The mentality that the military is a good employer (unlike SG) makes them easier and more loyal recruits."

So if Spore could get Israel to set up the military infrastructure way back in the mid 1960's, gahment willing, it could also do the same thing by engaging France's Foreign Legion to share their expertise thru a paid contract to set up a sizable military force of regulars capable of defending Spore staffed by foreigners. The French Foreign Legion are centuries ahead in forging recruits & regulars of different nationalities to think & act as one united military entity since 1831!

Its high time the Spore gahment open their minds & eyes to see how foreign countries make productive use of foreigners in the military to defend their country.

China peasants are hungry for work, throw a lifeline to them with paid income till they reach age of 50 years old by serving with Spore's military, they will come in droves & serve well. These will be the foot soldiers.

Robert L said...

Although I've suffered through all three arms of NS - Police, Army and Civil Defense, as well as reservist in two of them, I'm not giving the following comments along the lines of "I have suffered, then so should the rest of you".

Rather, I'm speaking clinically as a fellow taxpayer.

Yes, as we are all taxpayers, we have to realise that reservist training costs money. Those who go through the regular training go under the regular Defense budget. Those who fail and need extra training would become an extra burden to us, the taxpayers.

In this light, I have to conclude that the $100 is not a punishment/fine, rather it's a small contribution to lessen the burden to the taxpayers. I'm willing to bet that the $100 is actually not enough to cover the true cost of conducting the extra training course plus the second test. (Never mind that SAF itself calls it a fine.)

As a taxpayer, I urge Rob and those like him to look at the $100 as an equitable sharing of cost between him and the rest of us (taxpayers), arising from his failure to pass the required standard.

Now, there are those who will quibble with what is the correct standard, or even if NS itself is right or wrong, but that is outside the scope of my comments. We have to focus on the specific issue and make the proper conclusions before dealing with broader issues.

So, assuming that we small fries are not able to change the test standards, or not able to abolish NS itself, I ask fellow taxpayers what do you prefer? To pay entirely for all the extra training costs of reservists who failed, or to share the extra cost with those who failed?

darth said...

Hmm

I tried to report for my very first RT session at Khatib Camp yesterday. However, I was turned away at the gate because some major-general was having dinner inside the camp (?).

It's perfectly fine that the camp decides to shut its doors to host internal functions. However, given the fact that the SAF prides itself for 3G technological advances, surely an SMS could have been sent to notify us beforehand that the RT session has been cancelled. I know MINDEF is handling the SMS function, not Khatib camp. Perhaps communication between MINDEF and Khatib camp could be improved for everyone's benefit? My 2 yrs 4 mths in NS says a general's visit is never a last minute thing. Everyone will know about it way beforehand to prepare for it. Heh.

Anonymous said...

Looks like there is a lack of objectivity in the SAF. I hope ppl dont get emotional and overlook the issue where it can improve the system.

Anonymous said...
This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.
Upset said...

I faced a different problem: that of doing well in IPPT.

I am a reservist NSman in my mid-20s and still studying in university. I took my IPPT last year and got gold.

Because of that I was hit with a SAF 100 last week telling me to attend weekly training sessions for a running competition.

The sessions are held before 8am every Saturday. I was given a week's notice.

Is this permitted by law?

Anonymous said...

The whole RT schedule is ridiculous. I had to go for RT last year and I find the timing outright dumb.
Most employees do not get off work till 6pm at work and even that's stretching it. So basically they are suggesting that we go without dinner for a 3-4 hours exercise program, that is if we even make it on time. In order to make it to this ridiculous timing, most would have to approach their boss and inform them that they will have to leave early once or twice every week for one or even two months.
And the most amazing incident I had was that on a particular evening, there was an accident along the stretch of road leading into the RT venue and as a result, many got held up in traffic and were late. The instructors however refuse to process these 'latecomers' even though there were close to 30 people giving the same reasons. After a great deal of quarreling, the person in charge finally relented and gave these people a warning not to be late again.
So even though these people took the time off to meet the unreasonable timing, now they are held at fault for unexpected events like traffic jams? The sheer inflexibility of the RT program makes me wonder about the so called 'promised cooperation' for NSmen like us.

Anonymous said...

In my opinion, the RT system serves as a penalty rather than a 'training' system, which unfairly penalized Singaporean males.

We have to ask ourselves, in all practical sense, is it possible for all males to maintain that level of fitness?
Or in the first place, do we NEED that kind of fitness level? I am not so sure but even SAF seems to have different standards. Let's say IF a IPPT pass is a minimum fitness level which we must attain, but why are IPPT failures going through the same training programs with their fitter counterparts during In Camp Training? Are they implying that you don't have to attain a pass to be fit enough for the training activities? Or are the safely of our unfit soldiers, NSmen being overlooked?

The said...

/// In my opinion, the RT system serves as a penalty rather than a 'training' system, which unfairly penalized Singaporean males.

We have to ask ourselves, in all practical sense, is it possible for all males to maintain that level of fitness?
Or in the first place, do we NEED that kind of fitness level?

February 25, 2009 12:29 AM ///

Anon at 12:29 - I share your view - the RT is a form of punishment. But look at it on the bright side and on a positive note - you are "forced" to keep fit.

The IPPT tests are really quite easy and quite general. An average person who is not obese or sick will be able to pass it quite easily. The only difficult test to me is the 2.4km run, and that can be easily overcome if one jogs for half an hour once a week. So, I don't really understand you when you mention THAT kind of fitness level. The level of fitness required is very reasonable and achievable.

No one needs to endure the punishment of RT if they sensibly maintain an easily attainable modest level of fitness which is good for one's health. Why the hue and cry?

Anonymous said...

I wish to thank myself and all NS men, past & present, for 45 years of peace. Peace to grow this island republic into one great metropolis.

Today our AWAC watches over the island like a hawk, our fighting falcons comb the skies and swoop down at Paya Lebar and our subs snoop the rims of the region.

Our infantry is ever ready with its cutting-edge fighting machines stand ready to defend our mothers, wives, sisters, daughters and our way of life.

Thanks a million our comrades in arms!

Alv said...

The same thing happened to me too. I was training hard for the test but 3 1 week before it, I sprained my back and was given 2 weeks MC. So I had to forgo the test.

SAF should allow personnel to retake the test if they have genuine medical reasons and not subject them to go through RT immediately. This incident has caused inconveniences to everyone in the family and workplace.

Back2Nature said...

Didn't they changed the term ROD to ORD and Reservist to NSmen to clarifies that NS liability is not just the 2 years NSF stint.

Anonymous said...

going along the lines of those who say "i can pass IPPT, why can't you, you stupid?"

i dont roll over credit card debts every month, why can't you?

i can fix and troubleshoot pc problems, why can't you?

I can cook, why can't you?

I can take care of babies, why can't you?

i know enough not to touch weird investment products like minibonds and high notes way before the whole thing blew up, why can't you?

i can grow my own vegetables instead of buying those from market that're treated (whatever), why can't you?

typical smokescreens to sidetrack from the main issue, which is

"Is there room for improvement in the RT system?"

Mr Wang Says So said...

An excellent point, Anon February 25, 2009 2:19 PM.

Agagooga said...

Our mothers, wives, sisters, daughters can defend themselves just as well as our fathers, husbands, brothers and sons.

Then again, knowing Singaporean women...

Anonymous said...

girls also not much better off

Anonymous said...

thanks Mr Wang.

there's already a programme to stop people from failing IPPT. It's called Remedial Training (RT!!!). Some people here suggested that lazy and unfit people set aside some time for exercise...which is EXACTLY what RT is all about.

Some of the suggestions here aren't really suggestions at all, mostly chest-beating to put it bluntly.

When coming up with any new rules, regulations or a system, it is understandable that the people in charge cannot anticipate all possible scenarios that might occur. The whole purpose of this blog post is to suggest how to improve the system, so that the SAF may have higher passing rate for IPPT...AND to lower the number of pissed off NSmen.

Anyway, I'm kinda worried an RT post gathers more replies than the minibond/highnotes/nonsense investments and job market issues. Those seems like bigger problems.

The said...

/// Anyway, I'm kinda worried an RT post gathers more replies than the minibond/highnotes/nonsense investments and job market issues. Those seems like bigger problems.
February 26, 2009 2:21 AM ///

Anon at 2:21 AM - good observation there. But perfectly understandable and logical. The severity and size of a problem bears no correlation to the number of posts/replies. It is a pure numbers game. The toxic investments only affect, what, about 10,000 people (?). But IPPT/RT affects all male citizens who are older than 20 years old and below 50/55 years old. Say, roughly about 650,000 male citizens in the IPPT-iable age group. (Pitiable indeed). So, IPPT/RT has 65 times the audience.

santary said...

stupid system hahahhaha .. stiff, inflexible and simply inconsiderate. hahaha

-www.currypaper.tk

Anonymous said...

The reason why an RT post get more replies is because ... not that many Singaporeans have excess money to invest but a higher % of the male population are affected by an obsolete RT/IPPT/NS system that should have been scrapped.

Its like, u know, 1000 years ago, curcumcision was a great idea so lets find a better way to circumcise every1 and not asking why ...

Anonymous said...

Oops we;ve strayed away from the main topic,

however, the thing is, the toxic investments, financial turmoil and job markets (all linked in the current market situation) also affect most/all of the NSMen.

Unfortunaetly, it is easier for an NSman to see and feel the pain from compulsory RT, as compared to the pain from messed up "financial engineering". That doesn't detract from the fact that the current market turmoil is a far bigger problem though.

Anonymous said...

The blog posts that gather the most replies, are those topics that're either very very interesting, or it's very very easy to find a scapegoat and call him/her stupid.

I've already tried the method of calling people stupid (in reality, not on the Internet) when smoething crops up. Needless to say, that didn't solve any problem. It made the problems worse.

The said...

/// Its like, u know, 1000 years ago, circumcision was a great idea so lets find a better way to circumcise every1 and not asking why ... ///

Because they didn't have the foresight, so they got rid of the foreskin...

;)

James said...

pullup SBJ are hard to train. Everythime i go for 2 months RT either of them is a killer for me . i can pass the running with regular running but pullup needs more than 2months some times for me it takes up to half a year to train and it become harder as i age. lucky i am reaching cat y1 soon so i should be able to pass it more easily with some training

sbj depends too much on luck for me
if that day my technique correct i can pass if that day bad day i can jump like for 4 times and never pass.

gc said...

This isnt about RT, but more of the inflexibility of the SAF.

In my last window, I tore a knee ligament (ACL) and was given 3 months MC which coincided with the last 3 months of my IPPT window. Since I hadnt attempted IPPT I was aware that I'd likely be charged with failure to attempt the IPPT. To pre-empt such a problem I booked for a slot to attempt IPPT at SAFRA ToaPayoh during the MC period.

On the day of the IPPT, at the test center, I was told that I could not sit for the test never mind if the intention was to just take attendance and fail, since I obviously couldnt run. This was because I had "endorsed" my MC with the SAF and hence it was now recorded in the system. From the IPPT administrator's perspective, I would imagine this to be a "I dont want to be liable if you happen to fall down and break another leg" excuse. I was thus sent packing, a wasted trip, and no IPPT attempted.

Knowing that this could still pose a problem to their inflexible system, i called up the hotline and told them about the situation the next morning. Customer Service (yes, its a bit strange to name themselves customer service...) informed me that they will get back to me within a few days. A few days later, i was told that i would have to wait for subsequent measures to be dished out to me (i.e. charged) before i can explain my situation to the JDO when i get charged. This would amount to an additional trip to CMPB. But I thought, nevermind, we'll wait and see if it actually transpires.

Of course, I subsequently received notice that i was to attend the hearing for the charge. I immediately called up the NS hotline again, and expressed my unhappiness for a good half an hour to the lady over the phone laying down the bare facts:

1. i have made the effort to book and ATTEND IPPT

2. i was not allowed to attempt.

3. I called up to ensure that the my IPPT status to be amended accordingly. This was so that I would be charged and hence have to turn up at CMPB to waste more time.

Yet, the additional efforts in attempting IPPT are seemingly redundant as I am in the same situation as not having booked IPPT, nor bothered to call up. In fact, I was being screwed for endorsing my MC!

After a few rounds of useless phone conversations, which largely went in the fashion of:

"Why didnt you attend earlier?"

"Does it matter? I want to attempt IPPT, in fact I booked and went for IPPT, you didnt stop me at the time of booking, but stop me after i had travelled all the way to the test center."

"But you could have attended earlier"

"Of course I could have. But could you have changed my IPPT status?"

"You should have attempted earlier, why didnt you attempt earlier?"

Obviously, I gave up after hours of such meaningless "discussions", and turned up to answer the charge and was let of with a "reprimand" by the NS-man JDO, wasting half a day's leave in the process. And yah, I still had to do RT, which i had no gripes with - its after all some punishment I was prepared to face. I passed after phase 1.

Its ridiculous a system as rigid as this is in place. I suppose you can hardly expect anything less from the SAF.

Anonymous said...

Just be healthy, earn that $100 / $200 / $400 in under 13mins and get it over with.

Anonymous said...

During NS trainee days, I got gold for everything less SBJ. Knowing that I was weak in it, I did extra training myself and eventually managed to get a silver after countless IPPT attempt. Every one tells me that my techniques is wrong. But how to train??? It's not that I am not fit, I even did a biathelon once. I even spoilt a good pair of shoes and injured my knee just training for SBJ.

Fast forward a couple of year, I can still easily get silver for running and other station. But now, I simply can't pass my SBJ anymore. My knee has never felt the same after the last injury. So for me every year, it's either I do RT or IPT.

Anonymous said...

It takes you only 30 minutes in the evening to do your 2.4 km jog, inclusive of warmup and warm down.

If you can't even give that 30 minutes to exercise, but can give 30 minutes to gluttony, slacking and surfin the Net, then you truly deserve to be burdened with RT till the day you MR.

Is your boss going to take care of you when you finally break down due to poor health?

Please use your brains before coming up with excuses on why you have no time to exercise and take care of yourself.

Anonymous said...

It takes you only 30 minutes in the evening to do read up on ingredients used in food.

If you can't even give that 30 minutes to read up, but can give 30 minutes to watching TV, posting insulting remarks on the internet, then you deserve to eat chocolate laced with melamine or food that contains high amount of unhealthy substances.

Is your boss going to take care of you when you finally break down due to poor health?

Please use your brains before coming up with excuses on why you have no time to read up and consume junk food.

Anonymous said...

gc on Feb 27th, hit it on the nail.

The inflexibility of the SAF. Or interpreted in another way - cant be bothered to make it simpler or more convenient for the NSman. We work for the SAF, we are the rank and file. The Army is not a democracy.

Which is typical of Sg govt, PAP, elitist and military thinking. Possibly, these directives, operational procedures are drafted up by regulars and scholar officers - WHO HAVE NO SYMPATHY FOR WHAT CIVILIAN LIFE IS LIKE. They see things from their military perspective.

Sadly, they cant get it in their heads that for many of us, we are civilians first, soldiers a very distant second.

I've had my fair share of issues with ICT, and how its affected my company's business and my personal career. They only seem to be flexible if you have a high position in civilian life, earn a lot of money, or you're a senior ranking officer.

Back to this problem of IPPT, i seem to think that the only way out to really complain about it enough, to the highest channels, either via ST Forum, or to some senior officers within the SAF. Sitting back and complaining, i realise, will get you nowhere.

Anonymous said...

where is the man.

How come no new posts after so many days.

Maybe he is also training for his RT training?

Anonymous said...

"Is your boss going to take care of you when you finally break down due to poor health?
"


Yup. Its called health benefits/insurance :-)

Anonymous said...

Hi Mr Wang,
Firstly, I think the RT system is flawed. Great disruption to our normal working schedules. One good example was during the year of 2006. I was assigned the same RT period as my ICT.

Apparently if you have forgotten to book your RT one month after your window closes, the system will assign a RT date for you. In the end, I was charged and had to go to Mindef for an explanation on why I missed my RT. Ok, maybe negligence on my part, however, I could not go through my unit. I had to haul my a$$ to Mindef and was slapped with a penalty. No logic. I was serving my ICT!

My health is also deteriorating. 2 years back I contracted an illness but I am still classified under PES B. I am unable to complete my 2.4km run for the past 6 years. My chin up is also constant at 4 max. Every year I have to attend RT. Once during RT (before the IPT program), in order to pass and avoid going to RT Phase 2, I ran till I was foaming at the mouth and fainted but still failed. Almost needed to send me to hospital. This is what RT does to you.

My boss is equally pissed that every year I will MIA for few weeks either for ICT or RT. He was considering retrenching me 2 years ago and using that as an excuse. Luckily, I was pretty diligent when it comes to work.

Those ministers in their ivory tower will never know what we go through.

Anonymous said...

"Anonymous Anonymous said...

Just be healthy, earn that $100 / $200 / $400 in under 13mins and get it over with.

February 27, 2009 2:43 PM"

This is not the problem.

The problem is when one is healthy but missed IPPT due to other circumstancs like work, one still requires to go to RT first when passing IPPT is not an issue at all.

All SAF need is simply to allow another option, which is booking of IPPT date. I think this is a wonderful solution, isnt it?

Anonymous said...

How i miss those days when they send out a 100a for you to attend ippt on a given date. Then wait for the day to come, go see a doctor and then fax your mc over. guess that is why they decided that doing RT and making us book our own ippt dates is more effective.

Anonymous said...

Combat fitness is a different level and i agree even you are fit by standards of IPPT doesn't mean you can pull through missions with combat loads. But IPPT does measures your personal fitness level so that people can compare on a level field. I just did a Tiong Bahru Challenge running 5km, and climbing 30 storey high, I'm 97kg but i completed with reasonable timings around 50mins. Well if I'm lighter by 20kgs I am sure I can do even better. A lot has to do with self discipline on personal training and dieting. One of the best way is to get yourself training in interest groups, start a routine making it a habit like 3-5 times a week. Climb your way up the HDB staircase everyday after work. Within a month, some part of your body will change and become noticeable. Its hard to start alone definitely, so just throw yourself into a program. "No try, there is only do or do not" - Yoda/Star Wars.

Anonymous said...

As heavy as I am at 97kg and 1.75m, SBJ is never a problem for me, I can hit 239. My close friend at 85kg and 1.7m can jump 260cm, he's like a bullfrog. Our shuttle run is below 10secs. Sit up 40 no problem. My friend has no problem, I have problem in chin up cause my heavy body, so i need to lose at least 10 kg of weight, thinking of switching to vegetarian diet.

crazynarasupporter said...

hi I really understand RT really make life diffcult for those who are working. But is your duty to keep yourself fit and pass it, all the bullshit no time. only lazy ppl say no time. one day we had 24hrs!

Anonymous said...

@crazynarasupporter, no time = lazy? As an undergraduate reading law, i find myself in the school library from 9am - 11pm seven days a week. Because of my sedentary lifestyle spent sitting down and studying in the library as required from the heavy workload, i find myself unable to pass my IPPT.

Im certain that I am not by any standards lazy and your sweeping statements need to be relooked at. Not everyone who fails their IPPT is lazy. Perhaps you have a comfy stress free 9-5 job that allows you to exercise, so good for you. But understand that not everyone shares such a luxury.

And the duty to keep myself fit is to myself, NOT to the country. People scoff at the "fat" laws in place in Japan, but people dont realise that we have one which is even more draconian in Singapore - RT.

Anonymous said...

@crazynarasupporter,
We have 24hrs? Are you really sure? Do you actually know how to calculate?

It is correct to say that there's 24hrs a day. Say 7hrs to sleep will left you with 17hrs. About 8hrs for work will left you with 9hrs. 1hr of lunch break during work will leave 8hrs. Minus 2hrs for traveling will leave you 6hrs. We only have 6hrs to do other stuffs, which include but not limited to, breakfast and dinner, hygiene matters including cleaning yourself and your home, handling family matters.

We only have that few hours for our personal stuff. Of course, situations will depends on the individual's lifestyle. However, the aforementioned lifestyle is a more common and general type which does not include a millionaire's son.

Therefore, to suggest that we have 24hrs a day to spend, doesn't really hold water. And just because you can do it, doesn't mean it is possible for others as well because we are simply different individuals with different lifestyle.

Sure you may argue that we should adjust to fit in this method of living. However, if things can be handled this easily, why are there still comments, suggestions and complaints? Why is there a need for organizational behavior?

Anonymous said...

Hi all;

I ord in may2003 after my 2yr 4mth NS.

After ORD, I will make it a habit to go exercise regular 2-3x a week doing running/chin up/swim...etc

As of today, I still pass my IPPT with silver at age 30.

I think most people kanna RT because they dun exercise on a regular basis. Actually 30min exercise 2-3x a week is good enough to pass IPPT.

one more info for all nsmen, if you are always RT personnel, please do the following to reduce the damage of RT:

-downgrade to pes C2, thus no more IPPT

-faster complete 10 cycles of ICT and MR as fast as possible. MR mean no more IPPT or RT for you.
I am going to MR at age 31 after completed my 10 cycles of ICT...and no more IPPT after that!!!

Please do so, if you are always RT type of people. My platoon mate (RT personnel every year) is consider himself lucky, as he also MR at age 31 like me. Thus no more RT for him after 31 when he MR.

Those who keep deferring ICT will MR later/older, mean you have to do IPPT or worst RT till age 40 for men or age 50 for officer!!!