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Exercise Programs – 5BX and XBX

For Men

The Five Basic Exercises (5BX) fitness plan was developed for the R.C.A.F (The Royal Canada Air Force) as a progressive fitness training plan based on scientific principles to develop and maintain the physical fitness of their military personnel. The program has been widely adopted by the public.

5BX fitness training is designed to show you how to develop and hold a high level of physical fitness, regardless of where you may be located and can be carried out in limited space, without equipment and unsupervised. The simple exercises are structured to not require a warm-up and to train the body in a balanced manner. You start at a very low level and build up within your own capabilities. Resist the temptation to jump straight in at a higher level.

One day's exercise should be completed in a total of eleven minutes, is not dependent on elaborate facilities or equipment, and can be done in any place. It is important that the exercises at any level be completed in 11 minutes. However, it is likely that in the early stages, an individual will complete certain exercises in less than the allotted time while others may require longer. In these circumstances the times allotted for individual exercises may be varied within the total 11 minute period.

The 5BX Plan is composed of six charts arranged in increasing order of difficulty. Each chart is composed of five exercises which are always performed in the same order. The first 4 basic exercises are calisthenics and the last an aerobic exercise. As you progress within the system the number of each type of exercise that must be performed increases and the difficulty of each exercise increases.

The five exercises include:

  1. Stretching
  2. Sit-up
  3. Back extension
  4. Press-up
  5. Running in place or Walking

To download: Click Here for 5BX for Men

Please Note: Many exercise physiologists consider the sit-up in the higher levels to be capable of causing spinal injury, and therefore unsuitable for an unsupervised program. As always, please consult your physician before attempting any exercise program.


For Women

A corresponding program was developed for women under the name Ten Basic Exercises (XBX).

The XBX program consists of four charts of 10 exercises, arranged in progressive order of difficulty. As with the 5BX charts, as your fitness improves, you perform more repetitions and then move on to a more difficult chart. The 10 exercises are completed in about 12 minutes.

To download: Click Here for XBX for Women



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