Air Force PT uniform delayed as Space Force launches own workout gear

by Tommy Grant

The Air Force said March 8 it is postponing the release of its new physical training uniforms until April, 18 months after the uniforms were originally slated to hit shelves and a month later than the service promised late last year.

The new delay was prompted by a “previous fabric shortage” and an “ongoing color match concern for the running and all-purpose short,” Air Force spokesperson Master Sgt. Deana Heitzman said in an email.

“Initial inventory rollout is projected to Air Force basic military training units in April, followed by future fielding to Army and Air Force Exchange Service stores,” she said. It’s unclear when the workout gear will be available through AAFES.

Once the PT uniforms arrive, their debut will mark the first major update to the service’s athleticwear in almost two decades.

But this isn’t their first delay. Airmen had expected new uniforms in October 2022. Fabric shortages and other kinks in global supply chains have slowed the process, leaving airmen without new threads as a requirement to wear them in 2026 creeps closer.

The ensemble includes a blue-gray T-shirt screenprinted with “Air Force” in reflective lettering across the back, two pairs of navy-colored shorts and a navy tracksuit.

While the current and future uniforms look nearly identical, the latest uniforms add a pair of breathable, moisture-wicking shorts designed for runners. The clothing line is also available in men’s and women’s sizes, rather than unisex, to better fit service members.

The Space Force began rolling out its own physical training uniform on March 8 to the latest class of guardians at basic military training. Its workout ensemble, available in men’s and women’s sizes, includes a gray T-shirt with “Space Force” emblazoned across the back, black shorts with the service’s white delta logo, and a black tracksuit.

“This is more than a uniform rollout,” Space Force Staff Director Maj. Gen. Steven Whitney said in a March 8 release. “This is the first finalized service-specific uniform that guardians can wear with pride.”

Delivery of the Space Force uniforms will begin at select AAFES locations in the next several months, the service said. Those include Peterson, Schriever and Buckley Space Force Bases in Colorado; Vandenberg and Los Angeles SFBs in California; Patrick SFB in Florida; and the Pentagon.

Guardians will follow the the Air Force’s dress and appearance rules for wearing PT uniforms until service-specific regulations are released later this year, the Space Force said.

Zamone “Z” Perez is a rapid response reporter and podcast producer at Defense News and Military Times. He previously worked at Foreign Policy and Ufahamu Africa. He is a graduate of Northwestern University, where he researched international ethics and atrocity prevention in his thesis. He can be found on Twitter @zamoneperez.

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