News: Company H recruits prepare for new heights
Story by Lance Cpl. Crystal Druery
SAN DIEGO - When recruits step on the yellow foot prints, they’re not sure of what challenges they’ll face. Recruit training requires them to overcome various mental and physical obstacles with fellow comrades.
Week three aboard Marine Corps Recruit Depot San Diego, Company H recruits took on low obstacles during the Confidence Course, April 23. This course can be both a psychological and physical challenge for some recruits.
The 12 obstacles during this course are meant to help recruits in various ways. While it gives confidence to recruits that have a fear of heights, it also builds up their physical endurance.
“Doing the lower obstacles on the Confidence Course makes them realize they can get through things they never thought they could,” said Sgt. Lorenzo Hernandez, senior drill instructor, Platoon 2169, Company H, 2nd Recruit Training Battalion.
Many recruits that come to the depot haven’t trained as often or as hard as they do while at recruit training, which pushes them out of their comfort zone.
“I was a little nervous because I was unsure of what task would be at hand,” said Recruit Paul Patino, Plt. 2174, Company H, 2nd RTBn.
While Patino isn’t afraid of heights, he was nervous when taking on the tower, a wooden three-stories-high obstacle that requires recruits to pull themselves up to each story using their upper-body strength.
“I’m vertically challenged, making it more difficult to get from one level to the next,” said Patino. “I had to jump to grab each level then pull my weight up so I could swing my leg up.”
While the recruits took on these challenges, drill instructors supervised and motivated recruits to finish each obstacle.
“Our motivation is the drill instructors demanding recruits to get over their fears so they can complete the Confidence Course,” said Hernandez. “The higher obstacles on this course are the ones we have to push the recruits the most on.”
This push from the drill instructors forces recruits to gain confidence in themselves, something they will use throughout their entire Marine Corps career.
The following week, Company H will complete the entire Confidence Course, which is made up of three additional obstacles that require recruits to use their new gained confidence from the week prior, to take on these much higher challenges.
“There are always new obstacles to get over,” said Patino, “In recruit training and once we become Marines.”