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Serving commandos offer a glimpse of what it takes to become a Royal Marine

9 August 2019
Serving Royal Marines have produced a mini film exploring the rigours of the training that goes into becoming an elite commando.

The five-minute video short is narrated by Marine Arri Pike and takes viewers behind the scenes of the Potential Royal Marines Course, which takes place at the Commando Training Centre in Lympstone.

It is one of the first tests potential commandos must overcome in order to progress towards becoming a Royal Marine and earning their coveted green beret.
Mne Pike said: “Becoming a Royal Marines Commando is tough, but not impossible. The Potential Royal Marines Course is one of the first steps towards earning a green beret.

“You know it’s going to be hard, but if it wasn’t it wouldn’t be worth doing. It’s a great feeling to pass and be invited to train to become a Royal Marine.”

The training required to become a Royal Marine is renowned for being physically and mentally demanding to prove that candidates have the attributes, as well as the unique state of mind, required to be a Royal Marines Commando.

Lance Corporal James Clarke, who filmed and edited the video, said: “I was asked to make a film that would explore the realities of what it takes to pass the course.

“We tried to find a balance between the gritty, tough reality of becoming a commando yet still make it look achievable to potential candidates.”

Lieutenant Simon Williams added: "It is important for serving Royal Marines to reflect on the route which saw them earn their green berets.

Becoming a Royal Marines Commando is tough, but not impossible. The Potential Royal Marines Course is one of the first steps towards earning a green beret.

Marine Arri Pike

“I hope this video provides some inspiration to potential Royal Marines Commandos.”

The Potential Royal Marines Course is a four-day course that begins with the issuing of kit and an evening meal. The next morning, the hard work begins with a series of gym tests including a bleep test, press-ups, sit-ups and pull-ups.

This is followed by a 4.8km run in two halves. After the run, you will need to jump off a three-metre diving platform and complete two lengths of breaststroke before picking up a rubber brick from the bottom of the deep end.

If you struggle with any part of the assessment, you will be advised on how to improve ahead of basic training.

The third day is a gruelling all-weather physical and mental examination, beginning with a confidence test and assault course.

Candidates will tackle ladders, ropes, and obstacles up to 30 feet off the ground before running through the bottom field assault course. It’s a series of arduous physical activities designed to test your motivation and determination.

The last physical test is the endurance course, lasting about 90 minutes and covering over 2.5 miles of cross-country ground in Woodbury Common.
Potential commandos tackle tunnels and water obstacles including the sheep dip – a tunnel submerged underwater – before going on a steady run back to the Commando Training Centre.

The candidates finally spend a night under the stars in field conditions, experiencing a side of recruit life that is less about fitness. They work as a team to prepare food and shelter and look after themselves and their equipment.

On the final day, candidates find out whether they have passed the course and depart, ready to tackle the 32-week full basic training package and become a trained Royal Marines Commando.

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