SWCC Selection & Training Advice.

Arf

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@Arf What would you say is a good goal to strive for for treading? An hour? With hands or without?

Building the Endurance to Run Fast after Swimming?

I’ve been getting a lot of questions regarding treading from not only SWCC hopefuls, but SEAL / MARSOC Raider / Recon / ParaRescue PJ / Combat Controller CTT / Special Reconnaissance SR / Special Operations Weather Technician SOWT / Navy EOD / Diver / Special Amphibious Reconnaissance Corpsman SARC / Combat Diver hopefuls. (Intentionally obnoxious for keyword search function.) Let me know if I forgot other Combat Swimmers so I can add it to the list.

Egg beater Treading is a difficult skill to learn, but it’s all about muscle memory. Once you get the movement down you need to keep practicing until you can do it without thinking about it. If you are holding a weight, you will revert to whatever you practice the most, because I promise you, it will be sheer terror and panic.
If you can’t get in the pool, I firmly believe laying on your back and going through the motions, or even sitting on the edge of a chair is a good way to practice. Similar to dry firing a gun. You have to practice it enough for it to be second nature.

As I said before, this skill takes a long time to
learn, but keep practicing and I promise you it gets better with time. When I first started playing waterpolo, I couldn’t tread water for longer than 60 seconds. Now I can tread water with both hands out of the water for literally hours.

You might feel initially more comfortable trying to do the breaststroke kick to tread just because both legs move simultaneously, but I promise you it is not nearly as efficient, and when you are treading with weight, you will drown.
Learn the egg beater tread, guys. There is a reason all water polo players tread with the egg beater. I promise you there is no better way.

Once you get this down, a decent workout that I still like to do is 20 seconds hands out of the water, then 20 seconds lock your arms straight up above your head and keep the water at your arm pits (at the very least your elbows out of the water). Do this for 5 minutes back to back without putting your hands in the water. If you can do this and keep your clavicle at the water line the whole time you will do alright at the tread tests.




Here is another thread that links to various swimming questions I have answered.

.*** Looking for advice (swimming and tattoos)
 
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Arf

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I watched this in it’s entirety today, and this is the best up to date interview I have ever heard. He covers training starting at Basic Crewman Selection (BCS), preparation and lifestyle.

I considered adding it to this thread

.*** SWCC Lifestyle Questions

But I feel like this is more centered around preparation.


Also, I’m extremely pleased to see that www.sealswcc.com is finally updated. I think the best portion may actually be the “faq” section where they answer a lot of questions that I receive here from hopefuls.

The only thing I saw that I think needs to be edited is the claim that SEAL’s hell week is 5.5 days. It’s actually 4.5 days. It starts on Sunday around 9pm and completes on Friday around 10am.

Also, when I went through Basic Crewman Training (BCT) it was mostly small arms and heavy weapons training on land with combat medicine, engineering and land mobility training. We didn’t do anything on boats in the water during BCT. That could have changed recently though.
 
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Redtom

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HI, SWCC hopeful here.
From Intro (Not so breif). Moving the few questions to a more appropriate place. Looks like this thread should do the trick.


"My recruiter and Navy SO mentor told me that I should pick a placeholder rate that I want as I will be sent back to this rate in the event of failure. This is in direct opposition to what I’ve read. Should I just pick one with the longest DEP window?

Should I incorporate rucking into my training? I'm currently not. Where do I need to be?

How much emphasis should I put on hypoxic training? (not necessarily talking about underwater swims) In the pool?(freestyle breath holding pyramids) I'd say i'm relatively comfortable in the water, but I still fear underwater evolutions. Hearing Arf talk about folks passing out makes me feel a little squeamish, I definitely want to be on the right side of the statistics curve on that one. "
Thanks
 

Arf

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My recruiter and Navy SO mentor told me that I should pick a placeholder rate that I want as I will be sent back to this rate in the event of failure.


You won’t be sent back to that rate. When you earn a SWCC contract, the arbitrary rate will completely cease to exist. If you fail during the pipeline you will have to pick a completely new rate that is available due to the needs of the Navy. I think they are saying this to you in case you fail your PST forever.
I highly suggest picking a rate according to whatever provides you with the farthest possible ship out date to give you the most time possible to earn a SWCC contract.
I just spoke with my old recruiter this morning and he confirmed this.


Should I incorporate rucking into my training? I'm currently not. Where do I need to be?

You will be rucking a lot but in the SWCC pipeline it is not a pass/fail evolution. I would focus on running. Focus on your 1.5 mile until you get it around 9 minutes, then shift focus to a 3 mile. Those are the timed runs.
You will be rucking and running many many many miles, but the only thing that will get you dropped is failing a 1.5 or 3 mile.

How much emphasis should I put on hypoxic training? (not necessarily talking about underwater swims) In the pool?(freestyle breath holding pyramids) I'd say i'm relatively comfortable in the water, but I still fear underwater evolutions. Hearing Arf talk about folks passing out makes me feel a little squeamish, I definitely want to be on the right side of the statistics curve on that one.

You can do freestyle sets in the pool where you breathe every 5 Strokes. That will help in general. The best thing to do is honestly lay in bed at night and practice your breath holding there. I do not want you practicing extreme breath holding by yourself in the water. You may not think you’ll pass out but if you do, no one will be there to pull you out and bring you back.

Lay in bed, hold your breath. Get a piece of line/rope and practice tying the BOWLINE, SQUARE KNOT, BECKET’S BEND, CLOVE HITCH, and DOUBLE ANGLE knots while you hold your breath. You can flutter kick your legs in bed to help burn more oxygen. Do not, DO NOT practice breath holds in the pool.
 

AWP

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Lay in bed, hold your breath. Get a piece of line/rope and practice tying the BOWLINE, SQUARE KNOT, BECKET’S BEND, CLOVE HITCH, and DOUBLE ANGLE knots while you hold your breath. You can flutter kick your legs in bed to help burn more oxygen. Do not, DO NOT practice breath holds in the pool.

You mean there are safe ways to train? Man, that doesn't sound cool, it should be Xtreme. Like, knot tying, flutter kicks, being waterboarded by drunken frat boys Xtreme. That's how you forge a MAN capable of passing selection courses.
 

DasBoot

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You mean there are safe ways to train? Man, that doesn't sound cool, it should be Xtreme. Like, knot tying, flutter kicks, being waterboarded by drunken frat boys Xtreme. That's how you forge a MAN capable of passing selection courses.
Listen to what Goggins says to do... then do the opposite.
 

Rayven

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I want you to memorize this stuff. This will make you look REALLY good.


Maritime Institute "Mariner's Guide to Rules of the Road" Navigational Study Aid - Training Resources Maritime Institute


This isn’t the exact copy we are given but from what I can tell it is 99% the same.

Also practice this formula.

(60)(Distance)/(Speed)(Time)
I’ll try and find a link that explains this “60 D Street”. It’s easy but there are tricks that we use to make the math easier to do in your head.

Moderators, forgive me if I’m breaking any rules as a non-verified, new guy. I have no intention to mislead, so please take my comments with an unverified grain of salt.

With that said, I hope potential SWCC candidates heed @Arf advice.

Obviously, the primary focus is on PT, but brush up on basic math skills: long division, multiplication, decimals, etc. On paper, not a calculator. Learn “6 D Street.” It may save you some sleep during BCT (My source: long nights on Facetime with my son teaching me so he could better understand.) Also, no harm is learning "Rules of the Road."

My son’s close friend was rolled at Camp Pendleton, and later dropped from CQT for failing the final navigation test where you calculate and give waypoints to a boat captain. I’m sure @Arf can confirm getting dropped that late in the pipeline is a heart breaker.

Again, I’m an unverified nobody, but nothing wrong with keeping your math skills strong for any job you choose in life.
 

Arf

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Moderators, forgive me if I’m breaking any rules as a non-verified, new guy. I have no intention to mislead, so please take my comments with an unverified grain of salt.

With that said, I hope potential SWCC candidates heed @Arf advice.

Obviously, the primary focus is on PT, but brush up on basic math skills: long division, multiplication, decimals, etc. On paper, not a calculator. Learn “6 D Street.” It may save you some sleep during BCT (My source: long nights on Facetime with my son teaching me so he could better understand.) Also, no harm is learning "Rules of the Road."

My son’s close friend was rolled at Camp Pendleton, and later dropped from CQT for failing the final navigation test where you calculate and give waypoints to a boat captain. I’m sure @Arf can confirm getting dropped that late in the pipeline is a heart breaker.

Again, I’m an unverified nobody, but nothing wrong with keeping your math skills strong for any job you choose in life.

Good word.

Although In my experience we didn’t have any Maritime Navigation in Second Phase Basic Crewman Training (BCT). We only had it in First Phase Basic Crewman Selection (BCS - the most physical portion) and Final phase Crewman Qualification Training (CQT). I do see on the sealswcc.com website that the schedule reflects what you say, so I’m assuming the schoolhouse changed things up since I graduated.
 

t3456

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Hey @Arf,
Figured this would be a good question for general public on this forum. Recently took the ASVAB and with your recommendation of the KAPLAN study guide qualified for SO and SB. Took my first PST mid November with a retired SEAL Cheif and I did extremely average. While I was training on my own I was not as strict with form as I should of been with push ups and it showed during my PST. Lesson learned and not going to let that happen again. What did your training look like while you were prepping for the PST and then did you switch up any methods once you were contracted getting ready for the 800 division and the BCS/BCT pipeline?

Much Respect as always.
 

Arf

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I think that the training guides in SEALSWCC.com are actually really good. I personally didn’t use them but I wish I did.

My personal training plan:

M/W/F Swim, upper body calisthenics.

T/TH/Sat Run and lower body calisthenics.
Use your best judgement where to put abs. I mostly hit abs on run days.

I do the most important things first. Stuff that is vital to your PST(Physical Screening Test)
Start with the run or swim.
PRIORITIZE lots of pushups, pull-ups and sit-ups. The PST is NOT the last time you will be tested on all of this.

What I recommend working on other than the essentials:

TREADING WATER. This is a big one. I saw a lot of men give up because of their inability to egg beater tread. Get good at this.

Chest carry. Get a heavy sand bag, somewhere around 60 pounds, and carry that thing in both of your arms under hand and just walk around. Do it for as long as you can. It won’t be long enough.

Overhead press, both up and down, and holding lots of weight for long periods of time.

Dead hangs and farmer carries. You will be hanging from the obstacle course and carrying boats for long periods of time. You will need a lot of hand strength for everything you do. People commonly get dropped for lack of hand strength.

Lunges. Weighted and body weight. Lunge a lot.

Squats. Same as above.

Bear crawls. For insanely long periods of time.

Burpees. Hundreds.

I’m going to tell you that boats on heads is something terrible that I could never prepare you for. I don’t want to tell you to practice this because I don’t want you to destroy your neck and spine. You probably will destroy your neck and spine if you practice this. When you get out of BUD/S prep and into Selection, boats on heads will claim a lot of quitters. It’s the most painful thing I have ever experienced. Suck it up. You eventually learn how to tolerate it.

DO NOT PRACTICE BREATH HOLDING IN THE POOL. Lay in bed before you go to sleep and hold your breath. If you pass out in bed, you will just go to sleep.

While I was training on my own I was not as strict with form as I should of been with push ups and it showed during my PST. Lesson learned and not going to let that happen again. What did your training look like while you were prepping for the PST and then did you switch up any methods once you were contracted getting ready for the 800 division and the BCS/BCT pipeline?

Maximize PST standards. That is the priority. If you only have time for minimum workouts, focus on he PST stuff.
Add the other stuff after working on your PST requirements.

Once you can hit a 9 minute 1.5 Mile time, focus on getting your 4 mile time as fast as possible. (The test is 3 miles but you will be required to run 4 to exit BUD/S prep with your SEAL candidate classmates.)

I spelled it out pretty heavily in the above quote. If you have additional questions, throw them at me.
 
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