Virginia Beach Fire Academy

To provide quality training, unhampered by tradition, that will enable firefighters to perform their jobs in a manner that will result in reduction of deaths, injuries and property loss from fire, hazardous situations, medical emergencies and other disasters.

​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​Virginia Beach firefighter recruits will receive a salary and benefits while they attend the Tidewater Regional Fire Academy (TRFA) for 6 months. While in the academy, recruits attend classes Monday through Friday, 8:00 am to 5:00 pm with occasional evenings and weekends, as deemed necessary by the TRFA Instructors.  Training includes Fire Science classroom instruction and practicum and Emergency Medical Technician-Basic training including classroom instruction and practicum.

In addition to classroom instruction, recruits will participate in daily physical training.  It is a well-known fact that firefighters perform physically demanding job functions in various intense environments.   Therefore, the Virginia Beach Fire Department makes physical fitness a priority in order for our firefighters to perform their job safely and successfully.

Firefighter recruits are expected to maintain ​​physical standards with the goal of gradually increasing their physical conditioning during the training period.  The number one reason firefighter recruits do not successfully complete the Academy is their inability to meet the required physical standards.

Below is a list of exercises firefighter recruits are expected to complete on their first day in the Academy.  Firefighter recruits should gradually be able to increase their strength and endurance while attending the Academy.

Firefighters with masks and hosesBaseline Standards

Cardiovascular Conditioning - Run 1.5 miles in 15 minutes.  Running is one of the best ways to build cardiovascular fitness.  Be prepared to increase your running distance up to or greater than 5 miles during your training period.

Muscular Strength and Endurance - Strength and endurance are critical components of a Firefighter’s abilities in order to safely and successfully perform their job.  Be prepared to increase your strength and endurance through daily exercise while in the Academy.

  • Pull ups > 5 reps

  • Push ups > 30 reps

  • Dips > 10 reps

  • Plank greater than 2 minutes

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