Is there a physical agility exam for Correctional Officer? What does it consist of?

Correctional Officers (COs) must be able to respond to a variety of physical demanding activities to maintain the safety and security within a detention environment. This exam encompasses a candidate’s strength, endurance and agility required to satisfactorily perform the essential duties and functions expected of a CO. This Physical Agility Test (PAE) is modeled after the California Board of State and Community Corrections (BSCC) Department entry Physical Fitness Test. 

Each candidate will be required to successfully complete an agility course with job-task simulations of physical trials presented throughout a 500 yards (1,500 feet) course laid out on a variety of different surfaces. Applicants will have up to 5 minutes and 5 seconds to complete the course. A brief description of the agility course is below. Candidates should be prepared for this agility examination. On the day of the examination, candidates should be in good physical condition, wear athletic clothing and footwear, and bring plenty of fluids to stay hydrated.

Agility Course Description:             

The Agility Course has been established to demonstrating an applicant’s aerobic, strength, muscular, and flexibility conditioning. Each different stage of the course is outlined below.

Time Limit:

Applicants have 5 minutes and 05 seconds to run the agility course from start to finish; measured at 1,500 ft. Applicants that have taken more than 5 minutes and 5 seconds to complete the course will receive a ‘failed’ score. The solid wall obstacle will not be included in the 5 minutes and 05 seconds time limit for the agility course.


This obstacle simulates the quick sprint during a pursuit that could occur in any officer assignment. It demonstrates an applicant’s aerobic and endurance conditioning Sprint/Runs:       The initial sprint (or run) at the beginning of the agility course should not be walked. Applicants are to run this obstacle quickly, without injuring themselves.

Weight Carry

This test simulates an applicant’s capability to lift, carry, and drag heavy objects, push hard-to-move objects, physically subdue, or restrain a violent combatant, and physically separate two fighting individuals, among other duties. It demonstrates an applicant’s muscular, aerobic, strength, muscular, and flexibility conditioning. 

The course may consist of the following: 

  • A sprint/run of approximately 380 feet.
  • Dragging an approximately 100 Ib. rubber tire over a combined distance of 64 feet.
  • Carrying two (2) 45-pound hand-held weights over a combined distance of 120 feet; and,
  • Carrying one (1) 45-pound hand-held weight over a combined distance of 150 feet; and, 
  • Carrying one (1) 30-pound hand-held weight over a combined distance of 150 feet; and,
  • 20 complete ‘box steps’ consisting of 1-2 count = 1 step.


Negotiating obstacles within path 

Officers encounter a variety of obstacles while in pursuit of a suspect, or inmate, on a regular basis. Obstacles within the agility course have been placed throughout to simulate an individual’s ability to maneuver and negotiate around or over the obstacles. Within the course, these obstacles may consist of the following:

  • Sharp corners
  • Parking lot curbs
  • Hurdles

Box Steps/Stair Climb 

This obstacle simulates an applicant’s ability to negotiate stairs or a steep incline and be able to continue aerobic activity without harm.  

Applicants must place both feet on the top of the box step, one at a time, to equal one (1) rotation; applicants cannot use both feet to jump on box step. Applicant must use caution while stepping up and down the box steps.  

Box steps will be counted in the following manner:  First foot up, second foot up, first foot down, second foot down = 1 rotation; Total rotations for the box step obstacle = 20


Show All Answers

1. What are the minimum requirements to be a Correctional Officer with Placer County?
2. What are the selection standards for a Correctional Officer?
3. What are the typical duties of a Correctional Officer?
4. I currently work as a Correctional Officer for another agency and am interested in applying to Placer County Sheriff’s Office, what is the application process?
5. What is the application process for Correctional Officer?
6. What if applications are not currently being accepted for Correctional Officer?
7. What is the testing process for Correctional Officer?
8. I’ve taken a correctional officer written test in the past and have a score; can I have it applied to the Placer County written exam?
9. Is there a physical agility exam for Correctional Officer? What does it consist of?
10. What is the selection process for a Correctional Officer?
11. Where can I be assigned to work as a Correctional Officer?
12. What training is provided to Placer County Correctional Officers?
13. What kind of special assignments/teams are there for a Correctional Officer?