U.S. Army Special Forces Combat Divers School

U.S. Army Special Forces Combat Divers School

By MSG (RET) MadMax Mullen

The U.S. Army Special Forces Combat Divers School, Key West, Florida, is one of the most physical demanding courses in Special Operations outside of Delta and the Special Forces selection courses. This is a school that you just can’t be-bop up into expecting to pass. If that’s the mind set you go to the course with, I’ve got some news for you buddy. You will be doing the duffle bag drag back to your unit with your pride bruised, ego body slammed, and tail dragging between your legs. Outside of the coveted HALO jump wings the infamous Scuba bubble (badge) is one of the most sought after and prestigious skill badges a Ranger or Special Forces operator can flaunt.

I remember my days back in the 75th Ranger Regiment when that rare slot came down for Scuba school. If you were selected to attend you had better be in shape before heading out. The Regiment would set up a pre-scuba school for those attending the course to help increase their chances of successfully completing the course. It is a physically demanding course with high a attrition rate. So if you think you got what it takes, and feel you are a PT stud, try this Pre-Scuba workout regime that one of my Rangers used.

Pre-Scuba – Day 1

1. P.T. Test (Army Age group)

2. Swim Test (25 flutter kicks 1st week before entering pool!!!)

  • 500m swim (side stroke).
  • 25m under water.
  • Tread water w/hands out of water 5 min.
  • Retrieve a 20lb weight from bottom of pool then surface and state name, rank, and ssn. Return the weight to the bottom and repeat exercise 3 more times. Note: Do not drop!

3. Swim counter clock wise side stroke around pool.

4. Eight underwater 25m cross over swims.

5. Chow (Lunch for you civilians).

6. 500m swim with fins.

7. Dawning mask (PE) This involves clearing your mask while under water.

8. Swim 3min with an eight pound weight belt.

9. Eight under water 25 m cross over swim with fins.

[youtube]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Y3fcB8nPlOg&feature=related[/youtube]

Pre-Scuba – Day 2

1)     P.T.

  • 3 mile run 6-min miles
  • 10 wind sprints 50m
  • Exercise:

50 3-count side straddle hop (jumping jacks)
25×2 3-count push ups
50×2 3-count flutter kicks
Stretch cool down

2)     Swim test:

  • 500m swim (side stroke)
  • 25m under water
  • Tread water w/hands out of water 5 min
  • Retrieve 4ea 20ib weights from bottom of pool and resurface and state name, rank, ssn and take weight back to bottom note: Do not drop!

3)     Equipment ditch and dawn: Have LBE (pistol belt with 2ea 1qt canteens(w/water), H-harness, 2ea ammo pouches, field dressing pouch.

4)     1min bobbing

5)     5 min swim with 8-Ib weight belt

6)     10x25m under water swim (come up for air then repeat)

7)     Dawning mask (PE)

8)     1000m Swim in equipment with fins

NOTE: Safety, safety, safety! Workout with a partner, don’t push.

Build yourself up slowly because there is always tomorrow.  And last but not least no sniveling, winning or crying!

Pre-Scuba – Day 3

1)      P.T.

  • 6 mile run 7:30min mile pace
  • Exercise:

50 3-count side straddle hop (jumping jacks)
25×2 3-count push up
50×2 3-count flutter kicks
Stretch cool down

2)      Swim test:

  • 500m swim (side stroke)
  • 25m under water
  • Tread water w/hands out of water 5 min
  • Retrieve 4ea 20ib weights from bottom of pool and resurface and state name, rank, ssn and take weight back to bottom note: Do not drop!

3)      Equipment ditch and dawn: Have LBE (pistol belt with 2ea 1qt canteens(w/water), H-harness, 2ea ammo pouches, field dressing pouch

4)      1min bobbing with tanks (if you have them)

5)      7 min swim with 12-Ib weight belt

6)      25m 6 cross overs

7)      2min tread water hands out of the water

8)      3000m surface swim with BDU’s

Check back for Day-4, Good Luck!

NOTE: Safety, safety, safety! Workout with a partner, don’t push.

Build yourself up slowly because there is always tomorrow.  And last but not least no sniveling, winning or crying!  Have a buddy in a boat when working with tanks.

MSG (ret) Mad Max Mullen

“Failure is not an option!”

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