Endurance Training vs. Aerobic Training: A Guide to Conquer the PARE and COPAT Fitness Tests
man training with battle ropes for aerobic exercise

Preparing for the Physical Abilities Requirement Evaluation (PARE) and the Correctional Officer’s Physical Abilities Test (COPAT) is a crucial step in your journey toward a law enforcement career. These assessments require a high level of physical fitness, and one question often arises during preparation: Should I focus on endurance training or aerobic training and which is better? In this blog post, we’ll explore the difference between these two training methods and discuss which one is more effective for acing the PARE and COPAT fitness tests.

Endurance Training:

Endurance training primarily focuses on building muscular and cardiovascular stamina. It’s designed to enhance your ability to perform physically demanding tasks over an extended period. For law enforcement fitness tests, this type of training can be invaluable.

Key Aspects of Endurance Training:

  • Distance Running: Long-distance running, whether on a track or trail, is a common component of endurance training. It improves cardiovascular fitness and builds the stamina needed for the test’s continuous demands.
  • High-Volume Calisthenics: Exercises like push-ups, sit-ups, and bodyweight squats are integral to building muscle endurance, a vital component of the PARE and COPAT assessments.
  • Interval Training: Incorporating interval training into your regimen can boost both aerobic and anaerobic endurance. It’s particularly useful for simulating the stop-and-start nature of the tests.
Man running on a treadmill for endurance exercise

Aerobic Training:

Aerobic training primarily targets the aerobic energy system and is designed to improve the body’s ability to utilize oxygen efficiently. While it shares similarities with endurance training, aerobic training tends to focus on shorter bursts of intense effort.

Key Aspects of Aerobic Training:

  • Sprint Training: Aerobic training includes sprinting or high-intensity interval training (HIIT). These activities enhance cardiovascular capacity and prepare you for short, intense bursts of activity.
  • Anaerobic Exercises: Strength and resistance training that develop power and explosiveness can also fall under the umbrella of aerobic training, as they simulate the brief, intense tasks required during the PARE and COPAT.
  • Short-Duration Cardio: Short, intense cardio sessions, such as hill sprints, cycling, or rowing, are part of aerobic training and mimic the dynamic nature of the law enforcement fitness tests.

Which Training Method is Better?

The truth is, both endurance and aerobic training are essential for excelling in the PARE and COPAT fitness tests. These assessments require a well-rounded approach to fitness, as they encompass prolonged endurance challenges along with short, intense bursts of activity. A balanced training program that combines elements of both endurance and aerobic training will be the most effective in preparing you for success.

To achieve this, consider the following tips:

  • Diversify Your Workouts: Incorporate a mix of long-distance running, sprinting, calisthenics, and interval training into your fitness routine. Our weekly Mighty Titans class can help with this type of training!
  • Functional Training: Tailor your workouts to mimic the specific movements and tasks you’ll face during the tests, such as climbing, crawling, and lifting. Our Functionally Fit class focuses on these tasks and is held every week!
  • Recovery: Ensure proper recovery between workouts to prevent overtraining and injury. Nutrition and adequate rest are equally important. Weekly yoga classes are a great way to ensure proper recovery and stretching is achieved.

Endurance and aerobic training are both vital components of preparing for the PARE and COPAT fitness tests. By developing a comprehensive fitness regimen and training regularly with Blue Line Fitness Testing during our weekly classes or with our personal trainers, you’ll build the stamina, strength, and cardiovascular capacity necessary to pass these challenging assessments and excel in your pursuit of a law enforcement career.


Blue Line has experienced instructors and certified coaches who know exactly how to get people into the physical and mental condition they need to pass their PARE or COPAT as part of any law enforcement entrance testing protocols. Remember, consistency and dedication in your training are the keys to success.

Are you ready to run and pass your PARE or COPAT? Contact us today to start your journey towards your law enforcement career.

For more information on PARE or COPAT prep and testing or any of the other law enforcement testing Blue Line offers, check out these pages and posts:

PARE Testing Alberta page

Becoming a Fish & Wildlife Officer in Alberta

Sirens, Slammers and Service – A podcast for first responders

nikki cloutier owner and certification instructor for blue line fitness testing in edmonton

Written by Nikki Cloutier

Owner & founder of Blue Line Fitness Testing

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