Opinion / Opinion Line

Military's weight standards are necessary

(China Daily) Updated: 2015-02-16 09:14

Military's weight standards are necessary

Photo shows a brigade under the Shenyang Military Region of the Chinese People's Liberation Army (PLA) conducting combat drills in the snowfield on Jan 31, 2015.[Photo/]

The People's Liberation of Army recently issued guidelines for physical training in the military over the next five years. Among others, a most notable measure is the plan to gradually set bodyweight standards for soldiers and officers. Those failing to meet these standards might lose the chance of promotion. Comments:

For an ordinary individual, a beer belly might mean bad health; but for military personnel being overweight might affect his or her ability to do their duty, which may lead to casualties or even death on the battlefield - that's why almost all developed countries seek to control the weight of those in their armed forces. China also had a regulation, but it was not well enforced. We hope the new regulation will be strictly implemented for the health of military personnel.

China Youth Daily, Feb 15

The PLA headquarters issued the regulation because being overweight might prevent military personnel from fulfilling their duties. There will be different weight standards for different posts and age groups. But even the lower standards are not loose. All the different standards should be strictly implemented.

Li Daguang, a researcher on supply and devices at the PLA National Defense University, Feb 15

Experience shows that, thanks to daily training, soldiers in fighting units are generally in better condition than officials occupying administrative positions, who tend to have beer bellies.

Gong Fangbin, a colonel and senior political education researcher at PLA NDU, Feb 14

The weight of military personnel actually reflects whether a country's armed forces are disciplined. If too many officers and soldiers are overweight, it is highly possible that the military authorities are failing to regulate them effectively, and this could undermine the effectiveness of the military in time of war.

Luo Yuan, a major general and vice-president of the China Strategic Culture Promotion Association, Feb 15

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