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New uniform rules: Reflective belts, light-colored shoes no longer required PT gear

Jan. 20, 2014 - 06:00AM   |  
Airmen are no longer required to wear reflective belts with their physical training uniforms, under uniform changes effective Friday.
Airmen are no longer required to wear reflective belts with their physical training uniforms, under uniform changes effective Friday. (Air Force)
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Reflective belts are no longer required during physical training, and airmen can wear black socks and any color of athletic shoe with the PT uniform, according to uniform changes that went into effect on Friday.

While the Air Force no longer insists on the reflective belts during PT, commanders still have final say, according to the AFI signed by Brig. Gen. Eden Murrie, director of Air Force Services at the Pentagon.

Air crew also can now wear morale patches on their flight suits on Fridays or during special events, if their wing commanders approve. Small morale tabs can be worn on exposed Velcro on the left sleeve when the pen pocket cover is removed. Squadron commanders will approve a list of acceptable morale patches, according to the AFI.

The instruction also approves special “morale” undershirts to be worn under ABUs and flight suits on Fridays. Commanders can choose a single-color undershirt for their airmen, as long as the shirts are not unit-funded. Wing commanders, however, can approve more than one color “if it builds esprit de corps and facilitates team building.” The shirts can include unit emblems, no larger than 5 inches in diameter, on both the standard undershirt and the morale undershirt, as long as the logo cannot be seen if wearing an ABU shirt.

Additional updates:

■Air Force qualification badges, such as Scuba Badge, Distinguished Pistol Shot Badge, Test Pilot School Patch, are now approved on ABUs, along with other services’ qualification badges, such as Ranger tabs.

According to an Air Force release, Air Force leaders approved this change because the ABU has become an in-garrison uniform, as airmen deployed to Afghanistan have transitioned to the Army’s camouflage uniform.

“The increased wear of the ABU in-garrison, coupled with airmen’s long-term desires to wear the qualification badges and the command insignia they have earned, makes authorized wear on the ABU a logical step,” Lt. Gen. Sam Cox, Air Force deputy chief of staff for manpower, personnel and services, said in the release.

■A cloth version of command insignia pins is now mandatory on ABUs for colonel and below when they become available this summer.

■ There are no longer color restrictions on cell phones and other electronic devices not attached to the uniform or a purse.

■ Airmen must wear the stain-resistant sage green boot in industrial environments. Black boots no longer are allowed.

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