Britain’s Royal Marine recruits show they have what it takes to become part of the elite fighting forces through grueling Mud Run’s
The notorious run is part of a grueling 32-week Royal Marine training course that ‘turns civilians into Commandos’
It’s held in the foul-smelling mud of the River Exe estuary on the doorstep of the Royal Marines Commando Training Centre, Lympstone Devon.
It is designed to turn the merely tough into the super-tough.
A run, with strength sapping circuits thrown in, is designed to improve recruits’ stamina, strength, and team-spirit, and to weed out those who just aren’t up to it. The Royal Marines’ mud run is used as part of the 32-week training course said to turn ‘civilians into Royal Marine Commandos’, and looking at these astonishing photographs, you can see why even the strongest recruits dread it.
Exhausted, demoralised, and covered in foul-smelling sludge from head to toe, these Royal Marine recruits hope one day to wear the coveted Green Beret marking them out as the elite of Britain’s fighting forces.
As these pictures, (taken on Wednesday 1st May 2013) show, the men need to call upon reserves – both mental and physical – that they didn’t know they had, simply to get through the grueling ordeal.
Captain Ben Chappell RM, who oversees physical training at the Royal Marines Commando Training Centre in Lympstone, Devon, said: “The Mud Run is about instilling a Royal Marines state of mind”. The recruits spend up to 45 minutes in the mud that is so thick they can barely run, doing exercises and ‘games’. Towards the end of the session individual effort is not enough to complete the tasks given, cohesion is required using the buddy-buddy system, getting through it really builds team spirit”.
“We are not just looking for physical strength but mental resilience as well, and the team cohesian that comes from getting through the hardship together – this strength and bonding forms part of the Royal Marines’ DNA.”
He also mentioned that the recruits would not necessarily know when the run was coming up, saying: “It’s all about dislocation of expectation”.
Their uniforms offer little protection from the stinking slime as their superiors bawl at them as they commit to circuit training, and crawl on hands and knees through the mire left by the receding tide in the River Exe estuary, beside their training base. Nowhere else in Britain is there a military base right at the gaping mouth of a river, and the training team instructors take full advantage of the noxious mire left by the River Exe for some hardcore ‘obedience’ training.
A dreaded rite of passage, the infamous mud runs aren’t a regular fixture, but occur as and when training teams deem them necessary. If a recruit Troop work and bond together and give 100%, then generally they are held towards the end of the training course, as part of the Commando Training Tests. Just before the recruits are awarded their coveted Green Berets.
Sometimes they take place sooner than that, and sometimes more than once. It is one part of the Marines’ tough training course, which is designed to weed out those unable to cope, and create a bond amongst those strong enough to survive.
“There are two key aims we’re trying to achieve”, explained Captain Tom Limb, Troop Commander for 164 Recruit Troop, who are in their fourth week of training.
“Firstly, instilling the ethos of team work and the Commando qualities of courage, determination and cheerfulness. This troop are still early on in their training and they’ve not yet started to gel as a single unit, which is important”.
“The second is discipline – they understand what is expected of them but their discipline levels aren’t where they’re supposed to be at this stage”.
“Eventually, after training and passing out as Royal Marines they will be deployed with a Commando unit elsewhere, ready to take on operational duties – so any discipline issues, to do with the very basics like shaving correctly, cleaning weapons, or maintaining equipment, needs to be ironed out early and swiftly. Hopefully the run will have achieved its aim”
Other wise its back into the mud for another session!
Plagiarized and ‘amended’ form an article written by Harriet Arkell of the Daily Mail.
Royal Marines Commando…. It’s a state of mind.