The service has not conducted a PFA cycle since 2019 and will conduct only one round this year that will end in December, a Navy statement announced.
The resumption of the PFA will also usher in changes in how the Navy conducts the screening.
A new administrative message changes the rules for sailors who have given birth. Postpartum sailors will be exempt from taking the PFA for 12 months instead of the previous standard of nine months after giving birth.
However, postpartum sailors will be required to participate in a "wellness (unofficial) PFA between six to nine months postpartum," the message adds.
In another change, the plank will replace curl-ups as one of the required PFA exercises. Since this is the first cycle for the new exercise, sailors' plank scores will not count toward individual scores. However, the NAVADMIN noted that sailors "should give it their best efforts as we will use scores to validate our scoring tables."
One other change for this cycle will be a new option for the cardio portion of the assessment. Sailors now will have the option to perform a 2,000-meter row in addition to the usual 1.5-mile run, stationary bike, treadmill run, or 500-yard swim.
Finally, the Navy announced that because both 2020 cycles were excused, the rules for failing to pass the assessment will change as well. If a sailor did not pass Cycle 2 in 2019 and fails the upcoming 2021 PFA, it will not count as two consecutive PFA failures, the message states.
A sailor who fails two consecutive PFAs "will be subject to adverse administrative action," according to the message.
-- Konstantin Toropin can be reached at email@example.com.