What It Takes To Be A Marine – U.S. Marine Sergeant Denny Velasquez, left, an artilleryman with Battalion Landing Group 3/1, 13th Marine Expeditionary Unit (MEU), and Sgt. Austin Mealey, a platoon communicator with the 13th MEU command element, practices Marine Corps Martial Arts Program techniques aboard the San Antonio-class amphibious transport dock USS Anchorage (LPD 23). (Sgt Victoria Decker/US Marine Corps)
The Marine Corps is a strong brotherhood with a deep history made up of men and women like you. But none of them woke up one day and became a Marine.
What It Takes To Be A Marine
If you decide to become a Marine, you need to prepare for the tough times ahead. Train hard not only physically, but also mentally.
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You must score at least 31 on the ASVAB to join the force (although you can get a waiver if your recruiter can find an option). However, there is no reason to score low in the test as you can prepare easily.
Many bookstores sell ASVAB test preparation books, and if you can’t find one, order one online. These books tell you what’s on the test, give you tips on how to take this type of test, and provide practice versions.
Take three to five practice tests, study your mistakes, and study to improve before taking the next test.
Whether you want to be a grunt or a translator, study hard – not just because you’re proud to be a sailor, but because it’s always better to keep your options open.
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You should already be running, doing pull-ups, push-ups and sit-ups. There are many articles on how to prepare for the Physical Fitness Test (PFT) that go into more detail. What you need to know now is the minimum and what your goal should be, but you should always aim for the perfect result. Train with the goal of doing 20 pull-ups, 100 sit-ups, and three miles in 18 minutes. After all, you are joining the Navy.
Starting in 2017, Marines are allowed to do push-ups instead of pull-ups. For more information on PFT requirements, see the scoring charts. Push-ups and crunches are a two-minute timed exercise.
For most Marines, PFT was never the hardest part of boot camp. It’s either “drilling” in a sand pit (seemingly endless push-ups, jumping jacks, and more) or staying in constant running or marching.
You may feel comfortable with the idea of PFT, but remember to train for the actual boot camp and the rigors that come with it.
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You must meet certain height and weight requirements upon entering boot camp and throughout your time in the Corps. Check the USMC weight charts to see if you make the cut.
What does it mean if you’re on the heavier side? Fix PT and eating small portions often in boot camp. They won’t even let overweight marines eat chicken skin, so be prepared.
Some people wonder if they should prepare for Marine Corps Martial Arts Program (MCMAP) training. The answer is yes. You should be as fully prepared as possible for each branch of the Marine Corps.
Jiu-jitsu and kickboxing would be your best bets because these two martial arts have the most similarities.
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But don’t think you have to go to Brazil to learn jiu-jitsu with the greats or go to Thailand to kickbox, because most of the MCMAP form is corps specific.
The basics below should be enough to get you in the ring for wrestling or boxing.
This is especially true if you are coming from high school. Imagine going to classes and working or studying every day, occasionally spending an hour or two playing video games with your friends, yelling all day and not having time to get in shape and make new friends.
Even if you hook up with your best friend, don’t be surprised if you lose track of each other during boot camp.
Joining The Marine Corps: What You Need To Know
Boot camp is for being a Marine and that’s all you have time for. It’s a big match.
Sift through all the information and decide for yourself if joining the force is the right path for you.
Ask other Marines about their experiences. Read opinion articles and go to forums where people are discussing service time. The Marine Corps has many books on how to prepare for boot camp or what it’s like to be a Marine, so read on and find out what you’re getting yourself into.
We can connect you with recruiters in various branches. Learn more about the benefits of serving your country, paying for school, career opportunities and more: Register now and ask a recruiter near you.
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American Marines are serious. Although the Corps originated in 1775, their place in the American psyche was cemented thanks to the brutal island hopping campaigns against the Japanese Empire during World War II. In the Pacific, the Marines defined themselves as America’s elite force, an ethos that persists today.
Simply put, Marines think they are the best. Because of this belief, Marines have traditionally shied away from the concept of special forces: if all Marines are elite, what’s the point of calling some Marines more elite than others? However, the best composition of the Marine Corps is a reconnaissance, special operations capability force with an operational profile comparable to that of the Green Berets or the Navy SEALs.
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The intelligence selection and training course is extremely rigorous. Due to the amphibious nature of the Marine Corps, many electives include swimming and underwater training in addition to timed marches and other physical fitness tests. The attrition rate is high, with more than 50 percent of candidates who attempt Recon dropping out. Half of those who do not take the elective fail for medical reasons. The other half, about a quarter of all candidates, choose to opt out voluntarily or “drop on demand.”
The high attrition rate is a testament to how difficult the physical and mental aspect of Recon selection is. But it’s also frustrating and costly for the Marine Corps. The Marine Corps wants to maximize the number of Marines who pass through the selection without compromising their fitness standards or making the track too easy. If they can predict who is likely to fail or pass before choosing Recon, the training will be more effective. One researcher decided to try to answer the question, what separates the successful from the unsuccessful?
Leslie Saxon, professor of clinical medicine at the Keck School of Medicine, conducted a study to determine why so many Marine candidates drop out. His study sought to quantify the “mental and continuous
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