1.0 Introduction

This article provides an overview of Royal Navy School of Physical Training (RNSPT).

2.0 What is the RNSPT?

The RNSPT is the institution responsible for the selection and training of potential and current physical training instructors (PTI’s), termed Physical Trainers in the Royal Navy.

3.0 What is the Role of the RNSPT?

The primary purpose of the RNSPT is to select and train Royal Navy personnel as Physical Trainers, so that they are able to provide advice, support and opportunities for physical fitness, sport, recreation and adventurous training at all levels within the Royal Navy (RN, 2018a).

The RNSPT delivers:

4.0 Where is the RNSPT Located?

The RNSPT is located at HMS Temeraire in Portsmouth, Southern England.

5.0 Key Personalities

During 2017, there was a restructure and reporting changes for a number of posts with the PDev area. With this in mind, key personalities within, or having an impact on, the Royal Navy PT specialisation include (RN, 2017):

  • Rear Admiral (OF-7):
    • Assistant Chief of Naval Staff (Personnel) (ACNS(Pers)) has overall responsibility for physical development (PDev) strategy and policy.
  • Commodore (OF-6):
    • Head of Naval People Strategy (NPS) is responsible for strategic coherence in the policies for service personnel in the Naval Service. NPS is a civilian with the ‘rank’ of senior civil service grade 1 (SCS1) which is equivalent to OF-6.
  • Captain (OF-5):
    • Captain People Support (CPS) is the OF-5 lead for PDev strategy and policy and is also the head of the PT Specialisation. Working through the NPS to the ACNS(Pers), CPS is responsible for the governance and delivery of SQEP PTIs, physical education (including the promotion of healthy lifestyle), adventurous training and access to sport.
    • Previously remit of Captain Naval Physical Development (CNPD).
  • Commander (OF-4):
    • Staff Officer 1 Physical Education (SO1 PEd) is responsible for physical education policy which includes executive health (non-clinical aspects of health promotion) and the RN fitness test (RNFT).
    • Staff Officer 1 Adventurous Training (SO1 AT) is responsible for AT policy.
    • Staff Officer 1 Naval Sport (SO1 NS) is responsible for RN sports policy.
  • Lieutenant Commander (OF-3):
    • Staff Officer 2 Executive Health (SO2 ExH) is responsible for executive health policy and reports to the SO1 PEd.
    • Staff Officer 2 Adventurous Training (SO2 AT) is responsible for adventurous training and challenging training (AT/AC) assurance and the management of the PT (ATI) cadre’s continuing professional development (CPD). SO2 AT reports to SO1 AT.

6.0 Royal Navy PT Specialisation Rank Structure

The Royal Navy does not accept direct entry candidates for the PT specialisation, i.e. non-civilians. Candidates must apply for another job/role within the Service and then apply for an in-service transfer.

The rank structure for the PT specialisation is:

  • Leading Physical Trainer (LPT).
  • Petty Officer Physical Trainer (POPT).
  • Chief Petty Officer Physical Trainer (CPOPT).
  • Warrant Officer Physical Trainer (WOPT).
  • Physical Training Officer (PT Officer).

7.0 Physical Development Officers

A WOPT, or other nominated commissioned officer, can be selected as a (BRd 2, April 2017):

  • Regional physical development officer overseeing and co-ordinating all physical development output within their respective region.
  • Physical development officer facilitating the delivery of unit physical education, promoting fitness (including healthy lifestyle), sport (including grass roots), adventurous training, and challenging activities. They are also responsible for the RNFT or, where there is no PTI, identifying suitable candidates for the endurance training leaders (ETL) course.

Those assigned to the above roles attend a two day PDev Officers course at HMS Temeraire.

8.0 What is NAVYfit?

In 2006, the outward face of RN PDev was rebranded as NAVYfit to raise awareness of the PDev opportunities available to all naval service personnel (Royal Navy and Royal Marines) and provide renewed focus.

The NAVYfit Portal (formerly PDev Portal) is a comprehensive website, accessible through the Defence Gateway, providing a one-stop-shop for contact details, sporting results, news and images for each RN Sports Association.

9.0 Brief History

The name HMS Temeraire has had a long and distinguished history, with battle honours ranging from Martinique 1762 to the battle of Jutland in 1916 (RN, 2018b).

The first Temeraire, a 3rd rate ship, was captured from the French at Lagos by Boscowan in 1759. She saw action at Belle Isle in 1761, and was at Martinique and Havannah in 1762.

The second Temeraire, a 2nd rate ship, saw action at the Battle of Trafalgar in 1805 when she went to the assistance of Admiral Lord Nelson’s flagship, HMS Victory. She is however better remembered as ‘The Fighting Temeraire’ the subject of Turner’s famous picture, which shows her being taken up the Thames to Rotherhithe to be broken up in 1838.

Then followed a battleship of 8,540 tons built at Chatham in 1876. She served in Hornbey’s passage of the Dardanelles in 1878, and the bombardment of Alexandria in 1882. She later landed a Naval Brigade for action in Tel-el-Kebir and at Khartoum.

The last warship to carry the name was an 18,600-ton battleship launched in Devonport in 1907 and which saw service at Jutland in 1916.

The name Temeraire remained unused until 1955 when the Upper Yardman’s Training College at Port Edgar, Scotland was established. In 1960 the College closed and a Temeraire Division was established at the Britannia Royal Naval College, Dartmouth. When that Division closed, the name remained unused until 1971 when the Royal Navy School of Physical Training was re-commissioned as HMS Temeraire.

Situated then in Pitt Street, Portsmouth, a new complex was completed in 1988 in Burnaby Road and in June 1988 HMS Temeraire was moved to its present location. Housing the Royal Navy School of Physical Training, a Fleet Recreation Centre and the staff of Captain Naval Physical Development, HMS Temeraire is now the centre of Naval Sporting Activity.

On 26 April 2013, HMS Temeraire unveiled a £600,000 makeover to the Grade II-listed ‘Old Gymnasium’, including upgrades to the 5 championship squash courts, a new cardiovascular suite, an impressive glass-fronted entrance, and new offices and reception area (MOD, 2013). This followed other improvements at HMS Temeraire including a new 3G all-weather rugby and football pitch.

10.0 Useful Publications

  • Book of Reference (BR):
    • R 51: Physical Education and Executive Health Manual, also known as the physical training handbook.
    • BR 51(1): ?
    • BR 51(2): RNFT Policy and Protocols.
    • BR 51(3): Adventurous Training.
    • BR 51(4): Sport in the Naval Service.
    • BR 4006: Sport and Recreation in the Royal Navy.
    • BRd 2: The Queen’s Regulations for the Royal Navy. Book 2, Part 5 – Specialist Officers, Chapter 21 – Physical Development Officers.
  • Defence Instructions and Notices (DINS):
    • 2009DIN01-181: The Armed Forces Weight Management Policy.
    • 2013DIN01-133: Royal Navy Fitness Test (RNFT).
    • 2013DIN07-102: Individuals competent to conduct single Service Physical Fitness & Swimming Tests and Assessments, together with Phase I & II syllabused Physical Training, and the use of Endurance Training Leaders (ETLs)/Physical Training Leaders (PTLs).

11.0 Useful Links

  • NAVYfit (formerly PDev) Portal: http://www.royalnavy.mod.uk/sports.
    • The NAVYfit Portal is a comprehensive website, accessible through the Defence Gateway, providing a one-stop-shop for contact details, sporting results, news and images for each RN Sports Association.

12.0 References

MOD (Ministry of Defence). (2013) Upgraded Royal Navy Sports Facilities Unveiled. Available from World Wide Web: https://www.gov.uk/government/news/upgraded-royal-navy-sports-facilities-unveiled. [Accessed: 20 December, 2018].

RN (Royal Navy). (2018a) Royal Navy School of Physical Training. Available from World Wide Web: https://www.royalnavy.mod.uk/our-organisation/where-we-are/training-establishments/hms-temeraire/rn-school-of-physical-training. [Accessed: 20 December, 2018].

RN (Royal Navy). (2018b) History. Available from World Wide Web: https://www.royalnavy.mod.uk/our-organisation/where-we-are/training-establishments/hms-temeraire/history. [Accessed: 20 December, 2018].