Canadian Physical Performance Exchange Standard For Type 1 Wildland Fire Fighters (WFX-FIT)

Type 1 Wildland Fire Fighters (WFF) must be physically fit in order to fight wildland fires safely and effectively, as well as to avoid injuries and recover rapidly. In particular, they must have suitable levels of aerobic fitness, muscular strength and muscular endurance.

The WFX-FIT is a valid job-related physical performance standard used to determine whether an individual possesses the physical capabilities necessary to meet the rigorous demands encountered while fighting wildland fires.


WFX-FIT was implemented in 2012, following an extensive investigation of wildland fire fighting involving experienced Type 1 wildland fire fighters (WFF) across Canada. 

 All important physically demanding tasks encountered on the job by Type 1 firefighters were catalogued and then the physical demands associated with performing each task were measured.

It was confirmed that performing the WFX-FIT test protocol involves the same physical demands as performing the related on-the-job tasks.
So the "job is the test and the test is the job."  Standards of acceptability were then established for the WFX-FIT test, based on the performance results of experienced Type 1 wildland fire fighters.

Fire fighters work in a variety of different environments and terrain across Canada.  The equipment and tactics are often similar, but the physical demands may vary.

CIFFC member agencies share resources during periods of escalated fire activity through a mutual aid resources sharing agreement that is managed by staff at CIFFC in Winnipeg, Manitoba.  WFX-FIT was developed in order to ensure that Type 1 fire fighters can meet the demands of an assignment anywhere in the country.

 Type 1 Fire Fighters

A Type 1 fire crew is an agency’s primary initial attack or sustained attack force. Type 1 fire crews meet all of the requirements of the CIFFC exchange standards. Initial attack crews normally consist of 3 to 8 fire fighters. Sustained attack crews normally consist of 17-21 fire fighters.

WFF must be physically fit in order to protect their health, to work safely, to avoid injuries, and to manage work and fatigue effectively over long periods of time. The implementation of the WFX-FIT standard across Canada is a significant step forward in our efforts to look out for the safety and welfare of fire fighters.

The Test

There are five (5) components to the WFX-FIT: a screening component and four (4) performance components.

  1. Pre-Participation Screening

  2. Carry Pump on Back

  3. Hand Carry Pump

  4. Hose Pack Lift and Carry on Back

  5. Charged Hose Advanced

WFX-FIT is completed as a timed circuit. All performance components must be test together.  Fire fighters must be able to complete the test within 14 minutes and 30 seconds in order to be elegible for national exchange.

Provinces, Territories and Parks Canada have agency standards that apply to Type 1 fire fighters working in their home area.  For national export, Type 1 firefighters must meet the national exchange standard of 14 minutes and 30 seconds.

Who Administers the WFX-FIT?

WFX-FIT must be administered by individuals who have successfully completed the CIFFC WXF-FIT Trainer and/or Appraiser Course or successfully completed a WFX-FIT Appraiser Course delivered by a CIFFC certified WFX-FIT Trainer.

Some agencies may choose to have WFX-FIT administered by a Canadian Exercise Physiologist Certified Exercise Physiologist (CEP). The CEP must have successfully completed WFX-FIT Training delivered through CIFFC or through a CIFFC member agency certified Trainer.