ROTA NAVAL STATION, Spain — Marines might have to get used to new ways of
Combat Conditioning was taught last week to members of the Marine Corps
Security Forces Europe in Rota. The techniques are supposed to simulate
marching, hand-to-hand combat and other job skills.
The Marines at Rota have been ordered to employ Combat Conditioning in their
daily workouts. The rest of the corps might be next.
"It's better [physical training]," said Lance Cpl. Trinity Dupre of Jackson,
Miss. "It's more concentrated on the muscles. It's not fast and repetitious but
more of a workout.
"It's designed to have variety. I don't like PT where we're doing the same
thing every day."
The program was taught by Staff Sgt. Phillip Wyman and Sgt. David Gonzales of
the MCSF Training Company in Norfolk, Va. Wyman said he was scheduled to be
sent next to Bahrain, Cuba and the Dominican Republic to teach Marines there
about Combat Conditioning.
The old PT might have had Marines doing some quick stretches, jumping jacks
and squat thrusts. Then they'd head out for a three-mile run, and that would be
PT for the day.
The new method has Marines warming up their muscles before stretching them.
It features exercises such as push-ups with arms in close that simulate a
punch. Exercises require a tucked-in stomach, straight back, and a stance
that's solid and aggressive.
"It's not so much going through the motions," Dupre said. "With this program,
it takes less time and I get a lot better workout."
In Combat Conditioning, the precision of exercises is more important than the
amount, according to Lance Cpl. Garret Ullal of Santa Cruz, Calif.
"This week I feel we did better PT than in the last six months," Ullal said.
The course was taught to the Rota group over five days. The Marines had to
take a 50-question written test at the end of the week, then demonstrate the
new exercises they learned. They received a white binder filled with pages and
a CD to study from.
Thirty of the 230 Marines in MCSF Europe took the course. Fourteen will be
"You now have the power to change your PT program here within your company,"
Wyman told them.
The mission of MCSF Europe is in its name — security. The company is required
to be ready on short notice to deploy and provide security for a ship, a base
or any other asset. Last summer, for example, Marines from Rota were sent to
Monrovia, Liberia, to protect the U.S. Embassy and civilians during unrest in
the western African country.
The Rota Marines have different jobs but are all sentries in one way or
"When we have to stand post for four to eight hours, this will help us with
our discipline," Ullal said. "It will also help us when we're toting gear,
"The bottom line," said Capt. T.R. Crellin, the company's executive officer,
"is it prepares them for combat."
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