QUANTICO, Va. - The lieutenant jumps over obstacle after obstacle, quickly maneuvering through them. He reaches the ropes, jumps up and begins to climb, as he reaches the top, he shouts “Marine Corps.” The lieutenant has reached the top, but not the end of this endurance course.
Charlie Company with The Basic School completed their final Endurance Course June 23.
“The purpose of this endurance course is to test the lieutenants mental and physical strength,” said Capt. Jacob Gray, the staff platoon commander for Charlie Company.
The course starts off with an obstacle course, and continues with a five mile run, in full combat gear with individual obstacles along the way.
“The purpose of running with the gear is to simulate a combat mission,” Gray said. “As officers we lead from the front, so we must be physically ready.”
These types of exercises allow the lieutenants to get a feeling of the stressors they will feel in combat, Gray said.
The course is timed, with 60 minutes being a perfect score for males and 70 minutes for females.
Their final score is a part of their military skills grade which is one third of their overall grade in TBS.
This grade is important, because the better your grade is, the better your lineal standing in the company is, Gray said.
“This type of physical training is more practical than your traditional training in the Marine Corps,” said 2nd Robert E. Dzvonick, with 4th platoon, Charlie Company. “If you’re in combat and you lose your vehicle, you still have a mission to complete, which means you’re on foot.”
Any officer who wants to lead Marines needs to learn how to operate in a combat zone when they’re tired, Gray said.
“This is what The Basic School is about,” Gray said. “It’s all about your Marines, and these lieutenants don’t leave here until they are ready to lead them.”
There’s a lot of lessons to be learned here, said 2nd Michael Ribbe, with 3rd platoon, Charlie Company.
“For me it was the importance of hydration and physical training on your own,” Ribbe said. “This course is a perfect example that you need to be ready at all times, and if you’re not in shape or hydrated, then your not doing you’re job.”
Out of all of the lessons learned here today, there is one that should stick with them the most, Gray said.
“The need to learn what their physical limitations are and push past them, because that’s how we train Marines” Gray said.