What Should You Expect at Basic Training at Fort Benning?

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The training experience for recruits assigned to Fort Benning varies depending upon the assigned job. Infantry and armor troops continue on at this location with their advanced training, but all recruits assigned to Fort Benning have to complete the standard 10-week basic combat training course.

Basic combat training, also referred to as “boot camp,” is mandatory for all Army enlistees. New arrivals to Fort Benning first pass through the reception battalion where they are given a haircut, medical examination and inoculations if needed. Recruits must also pass a physical fitness test before leaving, which requires the completion of 13 push-ups and 17 sit-ups in one minute, as of 2014. A one-mile run is also conducted, and men must complete it in 8.5 minutes, while women must complete it in 10.5 minutes.

In basic combat training, recruits can initially expect to be constantly monitored and corrected by their drill sergeants. The first phase of training requires recruits to learn basic teamwork, drill, marching, Army core values, unarmed combat, navigation and first aid. An obstacle course must also be completed, and recruits must briefly breathe in tear gas to become familiar with its effect. In the second phase, recruits move on to marksmanship and explosives training with real weapons. The third and final phase begins with a final physical fitness test. Recruits that pass all this move on to field, camping and leadership training.