1. #1

    Join Date
    Mar 2008

    Default help with dummy drag

    Hello all this is my first post on the firehouse forums. And to let you know i have searched these forums up and down and tried to find my solution, but still can't. To start off i have been training to be a firefighter for some time taking all the classes and going to one of the busiest local stations here in bako and have done about 90 hours ride along time. my question is i just passed my written and skills test and now have to take the cpat, i'm taking it in orange county so i can get it over with and done but during the dummy drag what is the best way to drag him one handed or two handed the first time i had the cpat i did two handed and felt like it was taking along time i didn't stop once though but i have been training out front alot with a bucket and about 150 to 170 pounds in it and can pull it alot faster one handed and i like the power with my legs one handed what do you think i should do thanks all i appreciate it alot.

  2. #2

    Join Date
    Mar 2008


    sorry about the multiple posts first time posting didn't know why the threads were not coming up.

  3. #3
    Show me a Scania vehicle

    Join Date
    Feb 2007
    Lubbock, TX

    Default Simple

    It's simple, really. Do what feels comfortable to you. Most guys I've seen use both hands and go backwards (like me). However, I've seens guys start backward then change to go forward with one hand and it looks like they're pulling a light suitcase on wheels. It's like they pull hay bales for a living.

    Don't overthink this excercise. The CPAT is yours to fail.

  4. #4
    Forum Member
    Jwarne2001's Avatar
    Join Date
    Nov 2006


    When I first started with the CPAT, I pulled the dummy backwards with both hands. It got me through, but was kinda slow and hard on the back.

    I recently started at the academy at my local department and have switched to dragging it forward with one hand. Our dept does a slightly different physical agility test but does have a dummy drag in it. At the academy, on top of plenty of other PT, we also work in regular repeats of the physical agility test as a way to track conditioning progress.

    With all of the PT we've done, everyone is much stronger physically and aerobically....and pulling forward with one hand is pretty common now. I am 6'-1" and weigh about 175 lbs but can yank that 165 lb dummy around the drum pretty quickly now.

    Give it a whirl both ways (if you can) and see what works. Pulling it forward saves me a lot of time on that particular event.

  5. #5
    Forum Member

    Join Date
    Aug 2002
    San Francisco Bay Area


    Often, candidates don’t realize that it’s not just strength in the physical agility. The “Nugget “ is technique, momentum and grip with one or two hands.

    Dragging hose or a dummy is starting with a thrust to start up the momentum, taking shorter steps, keeping a low forward center of gravity, using your own weight to keep up the momentum during the pull.

    Rescue: At the dummy pull, size up where the handles are before you get there. Grab them and get going. You may feel the burn in your legs but don't stop. It saps your strength to have to get the dummy moving again each time you stop. When you reach the barrel, do not make the turn until the dummy's knees are even with farthest side of the barrel. If you try to pull the dummy around the barrel any sooner, it takes more energy and it will take more time. Get over the line and let go of the dummy and get to the ceiling Breach and Pull.

    The dummy from my son’s department disappeared from the training center. Two days later a 911 call came in from a pay phone asking for help. When units arrived at the scene, here was the dummy standing up in the phone booth with the phone receiver to his ear. Case closed.

    More on the CPAT from this previous Firehouse.com article:

    Last edited by CaptBob; 04-18-2008 at 09:29 AM.

    "Nothing counts 'til you have the badge . . . Nothing!"

    More Tips on getting hired and promoted by Firehouse Contributing Author Fire “Captain Bob” Articles here:

    Fire "Captain Bob"


  6. #6
    MembersZone Subscriber

    Join Date
    Aug 2007


    If you can, grab the sucker by the wrist and go. There were huge, beefed-up guys testing before me who were pulling the dummy by the collar, under the arms, etc and these guys were struggling. I am not a weakling by any means but I wasn't as strong as those guys. All I did was grab the dummy by the wrist with one hand and started running. That technique gets you away from the body of the dummy and provides better forward momentum (as opposed to pulling and backing up taking short little steps). Just my two cents.

  7. #7
    Forum Member

    Join Date
    Jan 2008


    At 5'10" and a mere 165lbs, I used two hands and walked backwards. Pulling with one hand just wasn't comfortable. The real answer is to do whatever feels the best for you. This part will most likely take you longer than any other portion of the cpat(except the stairs) but don't worry; the cpat is a damn easy test to pass. As someone above said, it's your's to fail.

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