'The Four Commando Tests'

At the end of Royal Marines training recruits need to pass four Commando tests in the space of a week. All tests are completed carrying 21 lbs of equipment and a rifle.

The Commando Tests include an Endurance Course, a 9 mile speed march, a Tarzan Assault course and a 30 mile speed march across Dartmoor.

On the Saturday they complete a six-mile endurance course which is a series of tunnels including a short-water tunnel followed by a four-mile run back to Commando Training Centre Royal Marines. A version of this test without equipment is done annually by thousands of civilians for charity during the Commando Challenge.

On Monday morning the recruits do a nine mile speed march in 90 minutes. Speed marching is a combination of running and marching.

On Tuesday morning the recruits do the Tarzan Assault course. They have already passed the Assault course in five minutes in week 20 of training.  The Tarzan course is a high obstacle confidence course which recruits have five minutes to pass. This third test requires them to combine the Tarzan and Assault courses and they have 13 minutes to complete it which means they have to go flat out the whole way round.

After this they only have one more test to pass – a simple 30 mile march across Dartmoor. The 30 mile speed march starts at the north end of Dartmoor and finishes near Plymouth. Recruits have eight hours to complete this test and will carry about 40 lbs of equipment.

If they have passed all the tests they are presented with their Green Berets at the end of the speed march.

Source and details valid as at December 2013: Royal Navy / MOD

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