We believe the officers of the Atlanta Police Department deserve access to the best training, support, and development resources available. Because we know that exceptional fitness, education, and preparation are essential to their ability serve the citizens of Atlanta, and when you answer the call you make a commitment to keep Atlanta safe.
That's why every recruit who aspires to join our force is required to complete the rigorous training regimen provided through the Atlanta Police Academy. The pages within this section provide more detailed information on the valuable academy experience.
About The Academy
The Herbert T. Jenkins Police Academy has been proudly training and preparing the officers of the Atlanta Police Department since its founding in 1947. This state-of-the-art, paramilitary facility is the first destination for all recruits, who will undergo more than 20 weeks of comprehensive training before becoming sworn Atlanta Police Officers.
What To Expect
The Atlanta Police Academy prides itself on our rigorous physical and academic training standards and methodology. In fact, for some recruits, the Academy may be the most challenging academic, emotional, physical and psychological undertaking you have ever experienced.
After being hired as a recruit, your first physical training test will be conducted within four business days. Thereafter, your academy experience will consist of at least:
- 80+ hours of physical training
- 80 hours of defensive training
- 48 hours of firearms training
- Hundreds of hours of classroom instruction
By the end of your academy experience, our goal is to help you achieve the greatest physical conditioning of your life and to be well-prepared mentally and physically to protect yourself and those around you in our communities.
How To Prepare
Policing is a demanding occupation - both physically and mentally. And while the Atlanta Police Academy will supply you with a foundation for life-long physical conditioning, there are certain things you can do to prepare for the rigorous academy experience.
Preparation DO's & DON'T s
- DO consult a physician, and (if you are not already) start exercising regularly
- DO start running regularly, increasing your pace and distance are you are able
- DO start eating a well-balanced, protein-rich diet and drinking lots of water
- STOP smoking and AVOID eating foods which you know to be unhealthy
- DO NOT attempt to "bulk up" or "cut weight" by taking excessive amounts of protein, weight loss or Creatine supplements. The majority of your training will be cardiovascular in nature, and these supplements will not likely aid you in achieving your Academy performance goals
- DO NOT engage in any activity that could result in serious injury, as this could prevent you from starting academy until you are healed
You should be in good physical condition prior to starting the academy, there are minimum standards you should aim for in order to best prepare for the Academy experience. These include:
- Run 1.5 miles in 14:30 or less to get into the Academy (13:30 to graduate from the Academy)
- Run Obstacle Course in less than 2 minutes (1 min 41 seconds to graduate from the Academy)
You will need to purchase several personal items necessary for training. These include:
- A quality pair of running shoes. (We recommend buying from a store that specializes in running shoes. These stores typically have staff trained to help you find the ideal pair of shoes to fit your needs. Remember: proper fitting shoes may help prevent injury.)
- Several dark navy sweatshirts and sweatpants
- Several pairs of above-knee length, solid dark navy nylon shorts (Effective policing relies on uniformity, and physical training and appearance are no exceptions. We train our officers to act, appear and perform as a team.)