Improved physical fitness uniform coming to a store near you

  • Published
  • By Brad Jessmer
  • Air Force Uniform Office
After much planning, anticipation and constructive feedback, the Army Air Force Exchange Service and the Air Force Uniform Office have partnered to bring a new and improved physical training uniform to select military clothing sales stores in July.

The IPTU, which consists of a running jacket, pants, trunks and a T-shirt, is an optional uniform authorized for wear. According to a policy letter issued Oct 28, 2009, by Headquarters Air Force Manpower and Personnel, even though the IPTU is made to be identical to the current PTU, components of the running suits are not to be mixed.

"The new IPTU was made to look like the original PTU," said Master Sgt. James Lynn, AFUO subject matter expert. "However, wear policy has been established and published that prohibits wearing the new jacket with the pants from the current version or the current jacket with the new running pants."

Material differences between the two running suits make it difficult to mix, Sergeant Lynn said. The IPTU running suit consists of a different material with enough shade difference to be identifiable from the current suit. However, the current PTU and IPTU shorts and shirts may be mixed and also worn with the IPTU running suit.

By utilizing the latest advances in textile technology, the IPTU offers significant improvements in both comfort and functionality over the current PTU, according to Capt. Nick Ferry, IPTU program manager. Improvements include the elimination of the "swish-swish" in-motion noise, better reflectivity, lighter weight and state-of-the-art moisture wicking material with a quick drying anti-microbial liner.

"Much time and effort from a lot of folks has gone into the research, development, and testing of the IPTU," said Captain Ferry. "The end result is a greatly improved uniform that will eliminate many concerns and frustrations our Airmen have had."

IPTU availability is based on several factors, such as duty location. Deployed locations will take priority shipments followed by Pacific and European theaters. World-wide roll-out of the IPTU trunks will be available through AAFES in July, while the running suit will be available sometime late July. The IPTU T-shirt release date is still to be determined. According to AAFES, the IPTU will be in short supply starting out. But once all military clothing stores have received shipment, the IPTU will be available via Internet purchase world-wide around October.

For locations receiving Air Force clothing from Army stores, availability will be limited. However, they will be available through special order at the servicing military clothing store.