The Importance of Physical Fitness in a Law Enforcement Career: Persuasive Essay

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Imagine a 6’, 250 lbs male with a large build fighting against a 5’7, 120 lbs female officer with a slender build body, during the mist of action who would win? To pursue a career in law enforcement fitness is one of, if not the most important, part of the job. Physical fitness is not just about lifting weights every single day and or running for hours and hours, sure that it is a part of what fitness is about, but there is more to it. There are beneficial outcomes when exercising, and these outcomes can be of assistance throughout the law enforcement career.

Proper physical fitness and health management is a great way to prepare for law enforcement. To ensure that police officers can handle their responsibility as a protector of society, it is crucial for them to be prepared to protect others and themselves. Exercising is a big asset to police officers physically, mentally, and emotionally. Physical activity is an important part that prepares police officers before going out into the field which involves physical contact with criminals. out on the field. Exercising improves an individual’s energy, getting the heart pumped several times a week makes the human body more energized, and being energetic enhances performance.

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To be able to handle criminals, police officers are required to be somewhat above average in physical fitness level to prevent interference and assault. Training with weights and doing interval workouts are great ways to start. It is important for officers to work on more performance/skill-related training rather than just blindly lifting heavy weights. Kelly Keith (2017) stated that “as police trainers, we need to enhance other fitness components that will enable the officer to win” (para. 4). Despite that exercising with weights and interval training can assist an officer out in the field that deals with physical strength, it is simply not enough to prevent a dangerous situation as there will always be differences in strength between the suspect and the officer. Keith explained that there will always be someone that is bigger and stronger than you no matter what and it is important to consider other types of exercises to develop the ability to fully defend themselves. There are many components of training that can help in different situations, such as muscular endurance. Muscular endurance is the ability to be in a physical confrontation that lasts more than 15 seconds. This special training can help take down suspects that resist. Another fitness component example would be agility. Agility requires you to be flexible, it is the ability to stop and change directions quickly when chasing after a suspect. These are two of the components out of many more. This shows how important physical finesses are to police officers as there will be many instances that require either these components or many others. Training for these physical components won’t be possible unless the person is physically fit. For instance, weight training and interval workouts that were mentioned beforehand were stepping stones toward enhancing these abilities. Weight training can help with ‘muscular endurance’, whereas interval training can help with agility. These examples show how prepared an officer should be out in the field and why physical activities are important for police officers out in everyday life.

Exercising is beneficial to police officers not only physically, but mentally as well. Everyone knows that regular exercise is good for the body, but exercises are also one of the most effective ways to improve your mental health. Exercising is not just about bodybuilding and endurance training, it helps with improving the health of an individual mentally. Daily exercises can help improve memorizing and overall mood. Having a good memory is a crucial part of being a police officer as there are many pieces of information and evidence to remember. For example, a description of a person: it is necessary to remember the suspect's description to bring him in for questioning. Another example would be remembering the codes used between cops, such as ten codes and alpha codes. Being mentally healthy is critical in this line of a job because it will get stressful, and undesirable events will happen. Mental health is a big issue in law enforcement because of depression and anxiety, and unfortunately, PTSD/trauma is part of it. In this line of work, officers will experience things that can possibly scar them for life. Exercising on a daily basis can have a big positive impact on depression, anxiety, etc. “Studies show that exercise can treat mild to moderate depression as effectively as antidepressant medication-but without the side effects, of course” (Robinson et al., 2018, para. 4). Depression can happen through a terrible event that occurs, and it is something that will/can affect the person’s action during duty. The severity of depression can lead to suicidal attempts. This explains and proves that exercising is needed in this line of a job because of the beneficial factor.

Physical fitness plays a big role in law enforcement as it benefits not only an individual physically, but mentally as well. Emotional health is like mental health as it affects the mind, exercising can boost a person’s emotional health. Emotions are an important part of being a police officer because of the decision a person makes in an emotional situation. Emotions are a form of mental state, but not exactly, mental health is more about processing information, whereas emotions are the thoughts and behavioral part of the mental state of how a person can behave. Emotional health is crucial to a person's health overall. Someone that is emotionally healthy can control their actions, thoughts, and feelings. In particular, being emotionally healthy is an advantageous aspect for a person that can control their behavior. Compared to police officers, they need to control their actions in stressful situations. Such as provocation from suspects, this is a common example of how a person can lose patience in a heated moment. Often, suspects intentionally provoke an officer to get them heated at the moment which can be led to the use of force. Sometimes the use of force is filmed by other people and posted on the Internet, which can be seen by many people as police brutality. Actions like these embarrass and hurt other police officers’ reputations. The simple reason that such an event can happen is through the ability to not able to control their feelings. Being emotionally healthy is important, as it can prevent an individual from doing awful things. Continuously keeping emotions intact is hard and that is true, but a way to coop with that is through daily exercising. “Research shows that emotional health is a skill. There are steps you can take to improve your emotional health and be happier” (Staff, F. E., 2017, para. 3). Emotional health is just as important as any specialized training as it is also a requirement for the job. The skill that controls every action the officer makes under certain situations. For instance, the ability to give time to think before something regretful happens. Therefore, being emotionally healthy give the mind a more positive way of thinking and many other credible choices to make. Given these points, as a result, being emotionally healthy is obtained through being regularly active, and how important emotional health is to police officers.

Physical fitness is undoubtedly a requirement to pursue a law enforcement career. This sort of profession can cost a person’s life without being properly prepared. That is why there are so many preparations beforehand, as it is simply a requirement to be able to perform. Police officers are required to properly handle every responsibility that is assigned to them. Guarantee that a police officer is fully prepared before going out on the field requires them to be physically, mentally, and emotionally fit for the job. Physical fitness is the number one requirement in the field of law enforcement because the job involves criminals. Having a gun and or a badge does not mean criminals will automatically give themselves up. Some of them will use force to fight back, and it is the duty of an officer to detain that person before anyone else gets hurt. Before an officer can protect others, it is important that they can protect themselves first. Another beneficial factor of physical fitness improves one’s mental health. In this field of work, things will get stressful due to paperwork and long hours of work. Exercising is an alternative to blow off some steam and prevents stress. Certainly, being emotionally healthy is also a big beneficial factor in being physically fit, as it is also a form of mental health. Emotionally healthy officers can handle situations with excellent judgment that avoids conflict. In addition, it is important to be positive and feel good about yourself because it can create good relationships with others. Overall, physical fitness is a fundamental part of becoming a police officer, and/or in general, as it is an optimum way to a wonderful life.

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The Importance of Physical Fitness in a Law Enforcement Career: Persuasive Essay. (2023, October 26). Edubirdie. Retrieved June 12, 2024, from
“The Importance of Physical Fitness in a Law Enforcement Career: Persuasive Essay.” Edubirdie, 26 Oct. 2023,
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