Now you are convinced that you have to join the Canadian Army. You understand the several ways to join, have the basic minimum required to ensure you can join, and have proceeded to apply. Let us also presume you have qualified and are about to begin joining the Canadian Armed Forces. You now want to understand the basic training you will undergo, both inside and outside a classroom. This article discusses in detail, what you will be doing when training, both in class and outside of the class. Remember these are the basics, meaning for advanced courses within the Army, you will be required to train for them as well.
Mianairforce and you need First, understand that the course takes 10 weeks. In these ten weeks, you will spend 62% of your time in class, 25% in the field, and 13% of it undergoing physical training. Also know, for all full-time regular force candidates, basic training takes place at the Canadian Forces Leadership and Recruit School in Saint-Jean-sur-Richelieu, Quebec. Part-timers joining their local Primary Reserve unit will undergo similar basic training objectives. Reserve units will conduct their Basic Training either at the local reserve unit location or at a Canadian Armed Forces training center. Locations vary depending on units. Talk to a Primary Reserve unit recruiter for more information on their Basic Training program. Here are some other things you need to know:
- Daily routine: your day begins at 5 am, and ends at 10 pm. Each training day consists of physical training, marching, classes and practical sessions on a variety of military subjects. You will spend your evenings maintaining personal equipment and living quarters and prepare for the next day’s activities.
- Field exercises: field exercises focus on practical military skills such as weapons firing, map and compass use, and marches of various lengths in full combat gear. You will also learn how to set up personnel or communal austere living arrangements and non-conventional cooking techniques.
- Confidence courses: these are military training exercises that involve physical tasks like scaling two- and four-metre walls, climbing a four-metre net, and crossing a four-metre ditch while hanging from a set of monkey bars.
- Swimming: the military swim standard is a key element of basic training. This test involves jumping into a pool wearing a life jacket and swimming 50 metres. You must also somersault into the water without a life jacket, tread water for two minutes and then swim 20 metres.
- Physical training: regular physical training sessions will prepare you for field exercises, 13-kilometre marches in full combat gear, and meeting the Canadian Armed Forces’ minimum physical fitness standard.
- Physical fitness evaluation: during the first week of basic training, you will take the FORCE Evaluation fitness test to assess your level of physical fitness. The physical fitness evaluation includes four components: sandbag lift, intermittent loaded shuttles, sandbag drag, and 20-metre rushes. You must pass this test to continue with basic training. If you do not meet all four of the fitness test objectives but can meet one or more, you may be able to take additional training as part of the Program to Return to Training at the Canadian Forces Leadership and Recruit School. You will have a maximum of 90 days to meet all three of the test objectives. If you are unsuccessful in meeting the four FORCE Evaluation fitness test objectives at the end of the 90 days, you will be released from the CAF. You may re-start the application process three to five years after your release date (depending on the circumstances of your release) by submitting a new application online.
The Fitness Profile assesses overall physical fitness levels among Canadian Armed Forces (CAF) members. It combines two measures: operational fitness, which is assessed via the FORCE Evaluation; and health-related fitness which is based on an estimation of cardiorespiratory fitness (derived from FORCE Evaluation results) and on a measure of waist circumference. The FORCE Evaluation fitness tests mentioned above are discussed below:
- Sandbag lift: you do 30 consecutive lifts of a 20 kg sandbag from the floor above a height of 1.0 m. The member alternates between left and right sandbags separated by 1.25 m. They are to be completed in 3 minutes and 30 seconds.
- Intermittent loaded shuttles: here, you do 10 consecutive shuttles (1 shuttle is 20m there, 20m back), alternating between loaded shuttles with a 20 kg sandbag and unloaded shuttles, totalling 400m. They are to be completed in 5 minutes and 21 seconds.
- Sandbag drag: you carry one 20kg sandbag and pull a minimum of four on the floor over 20m without stopping. A number of sandbags being dragged depends on the type of floor.
- 20-metre rushes: starting from the prone position, complete two shuttle sprints (1 shuttle is 20m there, 20m back) dropping to the prone position every 10m for a total of 80m. You need to complete these in 51 seconds or less.
To sum up, these basic training exercises are meant to teach you the core skills and knowledge to succeed in a military environment. They may or may not be the most demanding experience you have ever had and requires hard work and perseverance. The courses emphasize basic military skills, weapons handling, first aid, and ethical values. Since physical fitness is an important part of military service, a large part of the course is spent on fitness training.
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