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How Many Men Are In A Military Brigade?

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When most people hear the term "brigade," images of historic battles and regiments of soldiers marching in coordinated precision may come to mind. But a brigade's composition goes beyond just an assemblage of troops; it's an essential building block of military strategy and organization.

Understanding how many men are in a brigade provides insights not only into military structuring but also into how nations prepare for defense and conflicts. In today's article, we dive deep into the anatomy of a military brigade, its significance, and its operational capacity.

Defining a Military Brigade

In military terms, a brigade is a sizable unit that blends various battalions under one command. Typically, brigades are formed to perform specific operational tasks, and their comprehensive makeup includes all the necessary combat and support elements. Their alignment allows for tactical flexibility, making brigades key operatives in the hierarchy of military organization.

How many men are in a brigade depends on the size of the brigade’s battalions and their corresponding missions. An exact number cannot be provided since they vary in size and composition.

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Structure of a Military Brigade

At its core, a brigade consists of several battalion-sized elements and command, support, and service units. These battalions are, more often than not, combined arms units, including infantry, artillery, and even cavalry units, depending on the nature and requirements of the mission. The brigade commander, usually a colonel, oversees these units.

How many men are in a brigade who are infantry also depends on a variety of factors. Infantry battalions serve as the primary combat force within a brigade.

How many men are in a brigade who are artillerymen is also fluid. Artillery units provide fire support to the infantry and other land forces.

How many men are in a brigade who are in the cavalry similarly cannot be pinned down to a specific number. Cavalry units primarily provide reconnaissance.

How many men are in a brigade who are in support units like medical, logistical, and engineering teams is, much like the aforementioned branches, also hard to determine. Each unit plays a different role—infantry execute combat operations, artillery supports them with indirect fire, and cavalry scouts ahead. Support units ensure that the fighting force can sustain its operations effectively.

Size of a Military Brigade

How many men are in a brigade is greatly due to multiple factors, such as the specific branch of service (Army, Marine Corps), the nation's military structure and doctrine, and the brigade's designated mission. Generally speaking, a standard brigade can consist anywhere from 1,500 to 5,000 soldiers. However, it's important to note that these numbers are flexible and subject to change based on operational needs.

According to the U.S. Army, a brigade consists of a few battalions and anywhere from 3,000 to 5,000 soldiers. As mentioned before, a colonel is generally in command. For historical reasons, armor and Ranger units of brigade size are called regiments, and the equivalent Special Forces units are called groups. In 2016, the Army reorganized its brigades into brigade combat teams, which are autonomous modular brigades that most commonly include one combat arms brigade and its assigned support and fire units.

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As of September 2018, the U.S. Army consisted of 31 brigade combat teams (BCTs); 14 infantry brigade combat teams (including airborne brigades), 11 armored brigade combat teams, and six Stryker brigade combat teams.

The Army National Guard consists of 27 BCTs; 20 infantry brigade combat teams, five armored brigade combat teams, and two Stryker brigade combat teams.

Examples of Military Brigades

Detailed descriptions of several known military brigades can illustrate the variability in the size and composition of these units. It can also help answer the question, how many men are in a brigade?

U.S. Army Brigade Combat Teams (BCTs) exemplify the modern brigade structures, and they are sized at around 4,500 soldiers. In comparison, British Army Infantry Brigades are smaller in contrast to their American counterparts, typically comprising about 3,000 soldiers.

A Historical and Modern Perspective

Historically, brigades have seen numerous formations and have been pivotal in countless conflicts. For instance, during the Napoleonic Wars, French brigades were composed of several thousand men. In contrast, World War II saw U.S. Army brigades reaching up to 7,000 personnel in some cases. Modern times have demanded adaptability, resulting in more tailored brigade sizes to fit specific mission profiles and technological advancements.

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The brigade remains a vital and adaptable component of military structure, facilitating the strategic management of personnel across various military operations. While the question how many men are in a brigade is a hard question to answer, a brigade's capability is not just about manpower but also the synergy of its combined arms and support structures. To appreciate the strategic importance of military brigades is to understand the nuance of warfare and defense.

Continue to explore military topics with us and stay informed on the fascinating dynamics of military strength and organization. Whether you're a history buff, military enthusiast, or simply curious, understanding the role and scale of a brigade is a glimpse into the broader workings of armed forces around the world.

Remember: While this article provides a general overview of how many men are in a brigade, military formations are complex and dynamic, reflecting the evolving nature of modern warfare and defense strategies.

If you’d like to take a stab and try to answer the question, how many men are in a brigade, share your thoughts and further questions below, and let's engage in a discussion about the mechanisms that safeguard nations. For more in-depth discussions, make sure to follow our content.

US Special Forces: Everything You Need To Know

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The U.S. Army Special Forces, colloquially known as the "Green Berets" or simply "Special Ops," have long captured the imagination and admiration of the public. They are a group shrouded in mystique and respect, called upon to handle the toughest, most complex missions that the United States faces around the world.

But what exactly distinguishes these elite units from conventional forces? This post unpacks the unique role and capabilities of U.S. Special Forces, providing insights into their training, missions, equipment, and the extraordinary individuals who serve within their ranks.


The importance and role of U.S. Special Forces cannot be overstated. These soldiers operate in the shadows, accomplishing high-risk tasks deemed critical for national security. Their operations range from counterterrorism to humanitarian assistance, showcasing adaptability that's unparalleled in the military domain.

Since their inception in the 1950s, they have participated in all U.S. wars and significant military operations. Their motto is "De Oppresso Liber," which means "To free the oppressed."

Overview of U.S. Special Forces

U.S. Special Forces are the U.S. military's premier unconventional warfare assets. They specialize in various covert and overt missions where conventional forces are not suited or where discretion is paramount.

U.S. Special Forces Vietnam

U.S. Special Forces Training and Selection Process

Selection into any U.S. Special Forces unit involves an arduous process designed to sift the exceptional from the merely outstanding. The attributes sought after include physical fitness, mental toughness, and cognitive flexibility.

Candidates often undergo psychological screening, aptitude tests, and a series of grueling physical challenges. For those who make the cut, the training is intense and exhaustive, lasting from a few months to over a year depending on the unit. For instance, U.S. Special Forces candidates attend the infamous “Q Course,” where they are trained in weapons, tactics, survival, and language skills.

The Q Course is 53-weeks long.

U.S. Special Forces Mission Types

The missions of U.S. Special Forces are varied and complex, often requiring a high degree of secrecy. U.S. Special Forces are organized into Operational Detachment Alphas (ODAs) which are elite teams consisting of mature, intense, highly-trained operators. Special Forces operators receive specialized training in advanced weapons, language, demolitions, combat medicine, military free-fall, and advanced combat tactics. Today's quiet professional operates in autonomous environments as the most trusted force in America's Army.

The missions of U.S. Special Forces are Unconventional Warfare, Foreign Internal Defense, Security Force Assistance, Special Reconnaissance, Direct Action, Counter-Terrorism, Counter-Proliferation, Psychological Operations, and Information Operations. However, we will cover the more popular SF missions below.

U.S. Special Forces Counterterrorism Operations

These operations target terrorist networks and aim to prevent attacks against the United States and its interests. Needless to say, after 9/11 U.S. Special Forces teams were busy and they were the first elements of the U.S. military inserted into Afghanistan to bring the fight to the terrorists responsible for the attacks of 2001 and to take on any parties that were giving the bad guys safe harbor.

U.S. Special Forces Special Reconnaissance

When you think of these missions, think about the Special Forces operator in the Black Hawk Down movie who at the beginning of the movie is immersed in a Somalian town and he is collecting intelligence without detection. These missions are often conducted behind enemy lines using stealthy observation and data collection on enemy activities or environments.

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Direct Action Missions

Since it paints a good picture, when you think of direct-action missions, think of the fictional U.S. Special Forces team in the film, Clear and Present Danger. In this film a small team is inserted into the jungles of South America to conduct several direct-action missions which include the destruction of a drug lab and target acquisition for a jet fighter to launch an air-to-ground strike.

These short-duration strikes and other small-scale offensive actions are conducted in hostile, denied, or politically sensitive environments.

Unconventional Warfare

U.S. Special Forces support or lead guerrilla warfare and indigenous resistance movements against hostile regimes or occupying powers. Special Forces teams have been in Africa for quite sometime (and not long ago experienced intense combat where several SF soldiers died) and they are helping local forces combat the spread of terror groups in that region.

U.S. Special Forces Equipment and Gear

To execute their specialized tasks, U.S. Special Forces are equipped with some of the most advanced technology in the military. This includes custom firearms, night-vision devices, drones, and cutting-edge communication systems.

The gear is designed for survivability, mobility, and efficiency—often tailored to the unique demands of their covert missions.


The shadowed world of the U.S. Special Forces is a place where few people can operate. It takes a special kind of person to be able to manage the complexity of the missions and the physical and emotional stress that comes with these mission sets.

Hopefully this blog post has allowed you to step back with a newfound understanding and gratitude for these warriors. Their bravery, skill, and tactical prowess represent the pinnacle of military capability. Under the cover of secrecy, they stand vigilant, protecting national interests and global stability, their actions echoed only in the safe confines we continue to enjoy.

U.S. Special Forces vehicles

The complexity of their missions, the depth of their training, and the breadth of their dedication represent a commitment to service that goes beyond the call of conventional duty. It is this unrivaled commitment that secures their place not only in the annals of military history but in the eternal gratitude of the nation they serve. Let's remember and appreciate the courage, skill, and dedication of the U.S. Special Forces personnel, both past and present.

As we close this informative journey, remember, the next time you read about a successful mission executed in a distant land under the cloak of night, it might just be the handiwork of these silent professionals. In appreciation and respect, we say thank you to the U.S. Special Forces.

5 Veteran T-Shirt Designs to Show Your Pride

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Are you a proud veteran or do you have a loved one who has served in the military? If so, then this blog post is for you. As a way to show our appreciation and support for our veterans, we have gathered five unique and eye-catching t-shirt designs that will let you proudly display your service pride or pride you have in someone else’s service. From classic military emblems to more humorous designs, there's something here for everyone.

Why Wearing Veteran T-shirts is Important

When you wear veteran t-shirts, people notice. They come up to you and ask about it, and that's when you get the chance to share your gratitude for those who have served our country. It's a small but very meaningful gesture that shows our appreciation for all the sacrifices they've made.

Veteran t-shirts are also great items to wear if you are a veteran because it identifies you as a veteran and it can serve as an icebreaker for other veterans to approach you and talk to you. Supporters of the military community might also approach you and be inquisitive about your service.

One of us here at USAMM once was wearing a USAMM veteran t-shirt and they were approached by a local civic service club to be a guest speaker for a Veterans Day lunch, so it can also serve as a way to expand your network.

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Humorous Veteran T-shirts

We have a huge selection of laugh out loud veteran t-shirts that are sure to get a smile from passersby. Our lightweight, tri-blend shirts are comfortable, come in a variety of sizes, and they are all made in the U.S.A. right here in the great state of Texas.

Our humorous veteran t-shirts include former presidents dressed up and armed like special operators, Texas-centric critters locked and loaded for a mission, and some quotes that will make others blush when they read them.

We’ve got a large selection of sizes and all of our veteran t-shirts are affordable.

Service Specific Veteran T-shirts

As a veteran-owned business that serves the military, clearly, we’re biased towards veterans. And because of that we carry a wide array of veteran t-shirts for each branch of service.

One of our most popular veteran t-shirts is our fully customizable Navy ship t-shirt. This veteran t-shirt is perfect for the Navy veteran in your life. If you’re a Navy veteran, then you will love getting your favorite ship on this t-shirt and rocking it at patriotic events.

These veteran t-shirts are also great for ship reunions or for intramural sports teams, so they are not just reserved for special patriotic of military events. You can wear them for a lot of different occasions or just for running around town.

These also come in a variety of sizes and they are 100 percent, lightweight pre-shrunk cotton. Best part, we carry active ships and decommissioned ships, so if you served in the Navy long ago, we can likely print you a shirt with your old ship on it.

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Veteran T-shirts for Military Operations

Did you or someone you know serve in a war or military operation? We have t-shirts for Operation Iraqi FreedomOperation Enduring Freedom, Desert Storm and just about every military operation in the past 75 years.

These shirts come in assorted sizes and they are offered in two colors. These veteran t-shirts are combed and 30-single ring spun. And as we’ve mentioned, they are printed right here next to Fort Cavazos in Killeen, Texas.

Are you heading to a unit reunion to see your battle buddies? These shirts are great for those events or for just enjoying a cold one at the veterans’ barbeque.

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Patriotic Veteran T-shirts

Let’s face it. Just about every veteran out there has a patriotic streak in them. Some might be a little patriotic, and some might be over the top, but rest assured, if you’ve served, then you appreciate what this nation has to offer everyone.

Our patriotic veteran t-shirts are a great way to show your patriotism. You can wear these shirts for patriotic events like the Fourth of July, Memorial Day, Veterans Day and Flag Day, but you can also wear them to show your national pride whenever the mood stirs you.

Like some of our other shirts, these veteran t-shirts come in two colors and they are crew neck shirts.

Veteran T-shirts

Of course, if none of the aforementioned veteran t-shirts are appealing, we offer veteran t-shirts that simply show that you served without all of the hoopla. Like our other shirts, these veteran t-shirts are lightweight, made in the U.S.A., and come in assorted colors and styles.

Like the previously mentioned t-shirts, these items are great for just about any occasion and we just released a batch of new designs that should make it hard to find one that you love because you will likely love them all.


There are a multitude of ways you can show your service pride. You can fly an American flag at home, donate to veteran charities, and support military personnel who are deployed. But one of the easiest ways to show your pride is to wear veteran t-shirts. This affordable, simple way to show support for our troops can be worn any day, at any time.

And to recap, USAMM offers humorous, service-specific, military operations, patriotic and veteran t-shirts that will make others laugh, smile, or be proud with you. With Memorial Day, service birthdays, Fourth of July, and Veterans Day approaching in the coming months, visit USAMM and check out our inventory.

Our veteran t-shirts make great gifts for the veteran or service member in your life, or reward yourself with one of our awesome tees. Shop now.

The Best Patriotic Shirts to Show Your Patriotism

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As Americans, we have a deep love and pride for our country. From the majestic mountains to the shining seas, there's no denying that the United States is a beautiful and diverse nation unlike any other.

And what better way to show your patriotism than by wearing it proudly on your chest? Whether it's for Independence Day, Memorial Day, or just because you want to showcase your American spirit, patriotic shirts are a fun and fashionable way to express your love for this great land.

However, with so many options out there, it can be overwhelming trying to find the perfect one. That's where we come in! In this blog post, we'll share with you some of our best patriotic shirts so you can confidently rock your red, white, and blue all year round.

The Importance of Showing Patriotism

Hey there, fellow patriots! Let's talk about the importance of showing off our love of country through our clothing choices. Sure, some people might think it's cheesy or unnecessary, but we believe that wearing the red, white, and blue with pride is a small but impactful way of showing our support for America. And let's be real, who doesn't love a good graphic tee or tank top with an American design? Whether you're attending a Fourth of July barbecue or just feeling extra patriotic on a regular day, having a few of the best patriotic shirts in your wardrobe is a must.

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Versatility of Patriotic Shirts

If you're a fan of showing off your patriotic spirit, then you need to get yourself one of the best patriotic shirts out there. And the best part? These versatile shirts can be worn for any occasion - not just on the 4th of July.

Whether you're headed to the beach, out for a casual lunch, or just running errands, a patriotic shirt can be dressed up or down to suit the occasion. With so many styles to choose from, you can pick one that fits your personality and show off your love for the country all year round.

Different Types of Patriotic Shirts

If you're looking for a way to show off your love for your country, there are plenty of options out there for patriotic shirts. Whether you prefer graphic tees with bold designs, vintage-inspired looks, or even sports team logos in patriotic colors, there's a shirt out there that's perfect for you.

Some of the best patriotic shirts out there feature iconic symbols like the American flag or bald eagle, while others incorporate unique patterns and colors that still make a statement. Whatever your style, you can be sure there's a patriotic shirt out there that will help you show off your love for your country in style.

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Budget-friendly Options

If you're looking for ways to show off your patriotic pride without breaking the bank, look no further! There are plenty of budget-friendly options out there for those on a tight budget. Whether you're looking for something subtle or bold, there are plenty of styles to choose from that won't hurt your wallet.

Remember, retailers often have sales for various reasons and some, like USAMM, offer great discounts to commemorate special American days, like Presidents Day or Veterans Day. In addition, you can sometimes get discounts for signing up for newsletters and surfing around the product inventory might reveal deeply discounted items as well.

Supporting Small and Veteran-owned Businesses

Are you tired of spending money on cheaply made clothing that doesn't last? Do you want to show your love for your country while also supporting small American businesses owned by veterans?

Well, have no fear because USAMM has you covered with the best patriotic shirts out there. Made by proud American workers in Killeen, Texas, these shirts are not only high quality but also stylish and perfect for any occasion. By purchasing these shirts, not only will you look great, but you'll also be supporting the backbone of our economy: small businesses.

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USAMM is a proud neighbor of Fort Cavazos and we routinely support veteran causes and charities. We are a proud Texas company that creates some of the best patriotic shirts out there.


If you're looking for a way to showcase your love for your country, then look no further than your wardrobe. One of the most exciting ways to show patriotism is by wearing the best patriotic shirts out there.

Sporting patriotic shirts not only allows you to express your love for your country, but also encourages others to connect with their own patriotic spirit. Whether you're attending a parade or celebrating a national holiday, such fashion choices can make a powerful statement. So next time you're getting dressed to hit the town or even just running errands, consider throwing on your best patriotic shirts to display your undying pride for the land of the free!

In conclusion, it's clear that showing patriotism through clothing is not only a trendy fashion statement, but also a powerful way to express one's love for their country and support for important causes. Whether it's sporting an awesome graphic tee on the 4th of July or incorporating a patriotic element into your everyday look, there are endless ways to rock this style.

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And with budget-friendly options and the opportunity to support small businesses and American-made products, there's no reason not to add some patriotic pieces to your wardrobe. Americans should wear our patriotism proudly. Show your support for your country and its values, and embrace the power of wearing a message through your clothing - because who says fashion can't make a difference?

The best patriotic shirts speak loudly without the wearer ever having to say a word. If you’re interested in checking out some off the best patriotic shirts out there, visit USAMM’s website and start browsing.

Army PFC Rank: Everything You Need to Know

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Welcome to our blog post about the Army PFC rank. Whether you are a military enthusiast, a loved one of someone serving in the U.S. Army, or considering enlisting yourself, we have gathered all the important information about this rank and compiled it for you.

Introduction to the Army PFC Rank

When it comes to the U.S. Army's ranks, Private First Class (PFC) plays a vital role. This rank is the third-lowest enlisted rank in the U.S. Army, and it plays a crucial role in ensuring the success of the military's missions because they are the soldiers who execute orders.

PFCs are expected to be proficient in their technical skills, and possess a strong work ethic. They are also required to work alongside other soldiers and maintain a high level of professionalism at all times. By upholding these standards, soldiers who have earned the Army PFC rank contribute to the overall success of the military and the safety of the nation.

What does PFC mean?

In the U.S. Army, PFC is a rank that stands for Private First Class. This rank falls between Private and Specialist/Corporal, and is attained normally after four months as a Private and 12 months in service. PFCs are eligible for promotion after six months’ time in grade and 24 months’ time in service.

Most soldiers start in the E-1 pay grade with no rank. This rank is abbreviated as PV1, or Private. After six months of service as a Private, soldiers are eligible for promotion to the E-2 paygrade which is the PV2 (Private) rank. PV1s and PV2s are primarily responsible for carrying out orders issued to them by their leadership.

Eligibility requirements for the Army PFC Rank

Promotion in the U.S. Army is a reflection of an individual's skills and potential to take on more responsibility. Being promoted to Private First Class requires soldiers to complete certain eligibility requirements, such as earning a specific amount of service time and meeting certain performance expectations. Soldiers can also earn accelerated promotion to PFC if they enter service with college credit or with experience in programs like Junior Reserve Officer Training Corps.

Eligibility also includes passing required evaluation tests to demonstrate proficiency in their chosen field as well as good conduct during the service period. Once the requirements have been met, soldiers are eligible for promotion to the Army PFC rank.

Duties and Responsibilities of the Army PFC Rank

The Army PFC rank comes with duties and responsibilities that are commensurate with the soldier’s rank. Although a PFC is the third lowest rank in the U.S. Army, their contributions are no less important.

One of their primary responsibilities of soldiers holding the Army PFC rank is to follow orders from their superiors and perform tasks assigned to them promptly and properly. They must also maintain and upkeep their equipment and supplies to ensure they are always prepared.

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Additionally, PFCs are expected to show respect to their superiors, work well with others in their unit, and try to lead at any opportunity they can by doing things like keeping their peers motivated and on task.

Tips for Excelling as a PFC

If you hold the Army PFC rank, excelling in your role requires dedication and discipline. Three key areas to focus on are maintaining physical fitness, seeking proficiency in your military occupation, and following the chain of command. Staying in good physical condition is essential to performing well in both training and combat situations. This means practicing healthy habits like regular exercise and a balanced diet.

Additionally, working hard to understand your job and how it fits into the larger unit and more broadly, the U.S. Army, will help you refine and hone your skills. Lastly, understanding and respecting the chain of command is crucial to maintaining order and accomplishing tasks efficiently.

Importance of Leadership Skills

Leadership skills are crucial for anyone who aspires to climb the ranks, especially in the military. This is particularly true if you're a soldier with the Army PFC rank. As a Private First Class, you'll be expected to follow orders and carry out tasks effectively, but it is important to understand that the best leaders are great followers. When you learn how to follow by watching your leaders in action this will pave the path for you to develop strong leadership skills that can set you on a path towards promotion.


The Army PFC rank holds immense importance because these soldiers are where the rubber meets the road, so to speak. Missions cannot happen without those who execute orders. As a PFC, soldiers undergo rigorous training and have numerous responsibilities, including being a team player, following orders, and ensuring the safety and success of their unit. PFCs form the backbone of the Army, supporting officers and contributing to the success of missions.

In conclusion, the Army PFC rank may seem like a lowly rank in the military, but it holds a great significance and impact on the individuals who hold this position. From its origins as a junior enlisted rank to its current role as a valuable member of the team, the PFC rank continues to be a vital stepping stone for soldiers looking to advance in their careers.

Excelling in this role requires determination, discipline, and strong leadership skills. How can a soldier in the low ranks of the Army be a leader? By taking care of his or herself and also looking out for their battle buddy. The little things matter like ensuring your uniforms and that of your battle buddy are squared away, or working with your sergeants to ensure that you are proficient in certain tasks.

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So, if you are considering joining the Army remember that reaching out to your local recruiters is the first step towards achieving your goals and making a difference in our nation's defense. The Army PFC rank is more than just a designation; it is an opportunity for growth, development, and service that will leave a lasting impact on both your personal and professional life.

How to Become an Officer in the Army

How to Become an Officer in the Army

How to Become an Officer in the Army Intro

Have you ever dreamed of a career in the U.S. military, serving your country, and leading others? Becoming an officer in the U.S. Army is not only a noble and rewarding path, but also one that requires hard work, dedication, and determination.

As a highly respected position within the armed forces, being a commissioned officer comes with great responsibility and opportunities for growth both personally and professionally. In this blog post, we will dive into how to become an officer in the Army.

Whether you are starting fresh or considering transitioning from another branch of the military, this guide will provide you with valuable insights on how to achieve your goal of becoming an Army officer.

Different Types of Officers

Commissioned officers are responsible for leading soldiers in a variety of situations, from peacekeeping operations to combat missions, and must possess the leadership skills necessary to inspire and motivate their troops. In the U.S. military, there are three types of officers that lead and guide soldiers to achieve mission objectives.

First, commissioned officers are granted a commission by the U.S. Congress and they serve at the pleasure of the president of the United States for an indefinite period of time. Non-commissioned officers have a contractual obligation between them, and the U.S. government, and they earn their officer status through training, time in grade, time in service, and experience. Lastly, warrant officers are awarded a warrant issued by the secretary of the Army. They mostly serve as technical experts within a given discipline like aviation or information technology.

How to Become an Officer in the Army ROTC Cadet

How to Become an Officer in the Army through ROTC

If you're interested in serving your country as a commissioned officer in the Army, there are multiple paths you can take to achieve this. One option is through Reserve Officer Training Corps (ROTC), which allows students to attend college while also participating in Army training that prepares them for an officer role.

Students can join an ROTC program and they attend courses that cover military history, leadership, resource management and many other topics. Cadets also participate in physical training and other ROTC events and some ROTC cadets are allowed to attend special training like airborne and air assault training.

Upon completion of their bachelor’s degree, cadets are commissioned as second lieutenants. ROTC has two- and four-year programs, but a bachelor’s degree is required to become a commissioned officer, in most cases.

How to Become an Officer in the Army through West Point

Another path is attending the U.S. Military Academy known as West Point. This prestigious institution offers a four-year undergraduate program that prepares individuals for careers in leadership and military service.

Upon completion of their bachelor’s degree, cadets are commissioned as second lieutenants. Like ROTC, cadets at the academy have opportunities to attend special training schools. In most cases, attendance at West Point is a four-year commitment just to attend the school, followed by a multi-year service requirement.

How to Become an Officer in the Army through Officer Candidate School (OCS)

Officer Candidate School (OCS) is designed to give individuals who have already earned their college degree the skills and knowledge needed to become an Army officer. The training is a few months long and conducted at Fort Moore.

In addition, the National Guard, which is located in every state and U.S. territory, has state OCS programs where candidates who have full-time civilian careers can attend OCS on a one weekend per month basis for 12 months. Cadets are required to attend a two-week session at the beginning, and a two-week session at the end of their OCS program, in most cases.

How to Become an Officer in the Army JAG

How to Become an Officer in the Army via Direct Appointment

If you hold a professional degree like a juris doctor, medical doctor, nurse, chaplain, etc., or you are in a high-demand field like cyber you are eligible to enter the U.S. Army via direct appointment. That means you do not have to attend a commissioning program because you are being given professional military credit and the Army is recruiting you because you have a sought after and professional skill.

The Army has commissioned officers with direct appointments (outside of the medical and legal professionals), however, that normally happens in the National Guard or U.S. Army Reserve. In most direct commissioning cases, the candidate being granted a direct officer appointment has prior military service and theoretically does not require basic military training that officers receive in other commissioning programs because they have prior military experience, so they are granted a direct appointment. These commissions are very rare, but they do happen. All prior enlisted officers, regardless of their commissioning source are unofficially known as “Mustangs.”

Remember, each of the aforementioned options has its own set of requirements and benefits, so it's important to thoroughly research and determine which path is the best fit for you if you aspire to become an Army officer.

How to become an officer in the Army is a question that can be answered with a little diligence. As noted above, there are multiple paths to becoming an officer in the Army. The key is selecting the right path for you, but understand that in most cases, the needs of the Army come first. But with a little homework and persistence, you can join the ranks of the best Army in human history.

How to Become an Officer in the Army generals

Explore your options on how to become an officer in the Army. Once you determine the route you want to take, reach out to program recruiters to determine if you are eligible. Knowledge, patience and resiliency will help you along the way, but it will inevitably lead to the most rewarding career a person can possibly have.

If you have additional information or tips to share, please share them by commenting below.

Commemorate Service with Custom Military Ribbons

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Military ribbons are eye-catching symbols of dedication, exceptional performance, and valor. They have been a longstanding tradition in the armed forces for hundreds of years and they tell the story of what a service member has done during his or her military service.

These days, military men and women, as well as veterans or the families of veterans, have the ability to create a ribbon rack online, something that was unimaginable years ago. Whether you're commemorating your own honorable service or recognizing someone else's service, ordering custom military ribbons is a great way to honor the sacrifices made by those who serve our country.

Introduction to Military Ribbons

Military ribbons represent different military achievements and are given out as a way to recognize the hard work and dedication of our service members. There are various individual decorations for conduct, achievement, commendation, and meritorious service, but there are also service awards that reflect service during a specific campaign or during a specific period of time.

The services also award ribbons for completion of training, participation in overseas assignments and for other distinct and unique instances and accomplishments. When you see someone with a rack full of colorful ribbons on their chest, each one tells a different story. A ribbon rack is in many ways like a

résumé worn on a service member’s chest.

But did you know that custom military ribbons can also be created to honor specific individuals or events? These personalized ribbons can show appreciation for someone's service or commemorate a special occasion like promotion, retirement, or a new or special assignment. For veterans, it can help commemorate service in a war, or just recognize military service in general. All in all, military ribbons are a way to honor and recognize the incredible sacrifices made by our troops.

History of Military Ribbons

Did you know that military ribbons have a history that dates back to World War I? Soldiers used to earn these things and wear them on their uniforms to show off their achievements during their time on the battlefield. But others credit Napoleon for creating the concept of ribbons worn on the military uniform to decorate it and to show military achievement.custom military ribbons AAM

Military ribbons weren't always standardized. Sometimes different units or branches of the military had their own custom military ribbons. It wasn't until the mid-twentieth century that the U.S. military came up with a uniform system for awarding and displaying ribbons. Nowadays, if you take a good look at any uniform in the U.S. military, you'll see these colorful little pieces of cloth adorning the chest of any service member. In fact, most military services award a ribbon simply for completing an entry level training course like officer candidate school or basic training.

Different Types of Military Ribbons

Have you ever wondered what all those ribbons on a soldier's uniform represent? There are a ton of different types of military ribbons out there, each indicating something unique and important. For example, there's the Silver Star ribbon for those who have shown extraordinary valor in combat, the National Defense Service Medal ribbon for those who served during a time of conflict, and the Good Conduct Medal ribbon for those who have displayed exceptional behavior and dedication.

Some ribbons represent medals, as mentioned above, and others represent completion of training or other accomplishments. The ribbons, as they are earned, are placed on a ribbon rack and worn on the uniform in order of precedence. For example, using the above medals to illustrate, the Silver Star would be the top ribbon on the rack, followed by the Good Conduct Medal and then lastly, the National Defense Medal. Personal decorations have a higher value than service medals and ribbons.

custom military ribbons ARCOM

Importance of Custom Military Ribbons

Back in the day, service members could buy ribbons or get them from supply or the first sergeant. Then they would have to buy the ribbon rack and assemble it, sometimes leading to frayed ribbons or devices that aren’t perfectly centered or mounted. Not to mention, sometimes the ribbons were placed in wrong order, making the wearer a target for correction.

Enter USAMM’s EZ Rack Builder. Custom military ribbons crank up the professionalism and help service members and veterans look their best. Custom military ribbons showcase a veteran’s military service, but also show that the wearer truly cares about his or her military bearing and appearance.

Custom military ribbons aren't just standard ribbons you can pick up at any military supply store. Instead, they're customized specifically for the person receiving them, capturing their unique accomplishments and standing as a testament to their service. They are assembled by professionals who are dedicated to creating a professional product that is second to none. If you have a promotion board coming up, a military ball, a new assignment or you are just ready to invest in your professional appearance, custom military ribbons is the way to go.

Benefits of Ordering Custom Military Ribbons Online

Thanks to the convenience of online ordering, getting custom military ribbons has never been easier. With just a few clicks, you can choose from a wide range of ribbons and customization options to create a truly unique ribbon rack.

But convenience isn't the only benefit of ordering custom military ribbons online. Ordering online takes just minutes compared to driving around and then assembling the custom ribbon rack yourself. And custom ribbon racks are a lot more affordable than you think. It is an investment into your appearance.

custom military ribbons rack and medals

Conclusion on the value of custom military ribbons

Custom military ribbons are more than just a piece of fabric. They are a symbols of honor and dedication that are given to those who serve our nation. These ribbons not only serve as a commemoration of a job well done, but they also help to build camaraderie within the military community. Custom military ribbons are a testament to the hard work, sacrifice, and bravery that our military represents.

If you're looking for a way to show your appreciation for a loved one or just want to jazz up your own uniform, consider ordering custom military ribbons. Visit the EZ Rack Builder to get started and your custom military ribbons will be assembled and shipped directly to your house in no time.

How to Pack a Rucksack in the Military: A Guide

how to pack a rucksack snow

As a military member or veteran, you know all too well the importance of packing efficiently for any mission or deployment. A properly packed rucksack can mean the difference between success and failure in the field. But with so many items and limited space, it can be overwhelming to pack everything you need while still keeping your ruck at a manageable weight.

An old adage says, “Travel light, freeze at night.” But there is no need to be uncomfortable in the field and you can avoid freezing or other discomfort with a little planning. In this guide, we'll share some tried and true tips on how to pack a rucksack like a pro, drawing from our own experiences in the military. So, grab your trusty ruck and let's dive into the ultimate guide on efficient packing for any military endeavor.

Do We Really Need a Guide on How to Pack a Rucksack

Short answer is, yes. So, let's talk about how to pack a rucksack in the military. Now, you might be thinking, "Just throw everything in there and call it a day." But there's definitely a method to the madness. As every seasoned soldier knows, a properly packed rucksack can make all the difference in the world when you're out in the field.

It can mean the difference between being comfortable and being miserable, between being prepared for anything and getting caught with your pants down, so to speak. The best thing to start with is a packing list. Sure, every deployment to the field will vary (i.e. you won’t bring cold weather gear to the field in the summer), but if you develop a core packing list, and then a seasonal add on list, it will take some pressure off and you won’t have to remember everything you will need. First things first; make a list.

how to pack a rucksack best warrior

How to Pack a Rucksack with Essentials

Alright, so you're heading to the field and you've got your trusty rucksack ready to go. But what should you pack? Make sure you've got a sturdy water bottle or a hydration bladder along with plenty of pogey bait (snacks) to keep you fueled up. You'll also want a good first aid kit just in case. A reliable headlamp or flashlight is also a must have.

Your sleep system, parachute cord, e-tool, and 100 mph tape are all great things to pack too.

How to Pack a Rucksack with Clothing

First up, we've got uniforms. How many uniforms you bring depends on how long you will be out in the field. For a short field exercise of two weeks or less, some people bring just two uniforms, one for each week. Most will say three uniforms is a good rule. For longer excursions think about how much you will need.

Of course, think about whether or not you will need under garments and cold or wet weather gear. Many soldiers prefer to leave the underwear at home during time in the field and that saves a little bit of space in the ruck. But do not skimp on socks and spare boots, especially if you’re going to be some place very wet.

How to Pack a Rucksack with Hygiene items

You don’t need to overdo it when packing hygiene items. Sure, it is important to bring along soap, toothpaste, toothbrush, deodorant, shaving kit, feminine products, and other items you might need, but don’t get carried away packing things like conditioner, blow dryers, and other comfort items that might not have a place in the field.

A critical component of any hygiene list are baby wipes. These are fantastic for quick clean-ups or if you might not have access to showers. And of course, don't forget any medications or first aid supplies you may need. Consider bringing sunscreen, lip balm and bug spray if your location requires it.

These items are great to pack in pockets so they are readily available (along with snacks and water).

how to pack a rucksack ALICE pack

How to Pack a Rucksack by Maximizing Space

Rolling your clothes instead of folding them saves space. Even better, consider investing in compression sacks. These little wonders allow you to squeeze out all the air from your clothes and keep your pack compact. They can also keep clean clothes dry.

Put clothes and things you will need at the top of your ruck that way they are easily accessed when they are needed. Also, consider packing soft clothing items along the spine of your pack so hard items aren’t digging into your back. When placing the rolled clothes in your rucksack ensure you fill any gaps with smaller items like socks or t-shirts. Remember to distribute the weight evenly for a comfortable carry.

Tricks for Carrying Heavier Items

If you're carrying heavier items into the field, it can be tough to fit everything in without your rucksack becoming too heavy or uncomfortable to carry. Luckily, there are a few tricks you can use to make sure you can carry those heavier items without any issues.

One trick is to pack your heaviest items closest to your back, which can help distribute the weight evenly. How to pack a rucksack with the weight distributed doesn’t have to be hard and the last thing you want is for your pack to be lopsided and throwing off your balance.

That's why it's important to know how to pack a rucksack with weight distribution in mind. Start by placing the heaviest items at the bottom of your pack and closer to your back. This will help keep your center of gravity stable. Then, fill in empty spaces with lighter items and make sure to distribute weight evenly between the left and right sides.

how to pack a rucksack rucking

Adjusting Straps for Comfort

Before you head out, make sure those shoulder straps are adjusted for maximum comfort and balance. A poorly adjusted rucksack can lead to some serious discomfort and even back pain, even long-term injuries.

Remember to adjust the shoulder straps so they fit snugly and comfortably, but not so tight that they're cutting off circulation. Next, adjust the waist and chest straps to evenly distribute the weight of the pack across your body. And don't forget to adjust the load lifters, those little straps on the top of the shoulder straps, to lift the weight off your back and onto your shoulders.


Hopefully you’re still not asking how to pack a rucksack in the military. As discussed in this blog post, there are key essentials that should always be included, and while it may seem overwhelming at first, hopefully these tips and tricks that can help you maximize space and organize your rucksack for optimal efficiency. Of course, if you have other tips or suggestions on packing a rucksack in the military, please share them in the comments below.

VBSS in the Navy: Boarding Enemy Ships

VBSS Navy 2009

Operating in the vast and unpredictable expanse of the ocean is no easy feat, especially when facing potential threats from various hostile forces. That’s where the Navy's VBSS (Visit, Board, Search, and Seizure) team comes into play. The highly trained men and women who make up these teams are an essential component in ensuring maritime security for our country.

They undertake the critical mission of intercepting, boarding, and securing enemy vessels at sea – a job that requires immense physical strength, tactical proficiency, and precise execution. In this blog post, we’ll dive deep into VBSS Navy operations to understand their role in protecting our naval assets and maintaining peace on international waters.

Introduction to VBSS Navy

VBSS, short for Visit, Board, Search, and Seizure, is an important part of the Navy's operations against security threats. Simply put, VBSS is the process of searching and boarding ships, vehicles or planes suspected of carrying unlawful items and persons. The need to perform a VBSS mission might arise when a ship is suspected of carrying illegal weapons, drugs, or even terrorists.

During such operations, the Navy team responsible for VBSS must be well-trained, equipped, and ready to take on the mission successfully. VBSS is a critical operation that requires an impeccable coordination between all parties involved in order to guarantee a safe and successful operation. The implementation of VBSS Navy has been a crucial step towards controlling illegal activities at sea.

VBSS Navy crossing

VBSS Navy History and Evolution

The origins of VBSS can be traced back to the early 1980s when the need for a specialized team to board and search ships became apparent. Over the years, VBSS Navy teams have evolved to become highly trained units that perform a wide range of tasks, from maritime interdiction to humanitarian aid and disaster response.

Along with modern technological advancements, VBSS has adapted to an ever-changing naval environment, making it an essential part of the Navy's operations today. A well-executed VBSS operation can mean the difference between success and failure in preserving national security and protecting American interests. Despite the risks, VBSS Navy personnel continue to carry out these challenging and important missions with professionalism, skill, and bravery.

Intelligence Gathering in VBSS Navy Missions

Intelligence gathering is a crucial element in the VBSS Navy mission and can provide critical information about potential threats, the nature of cargo on board, and the behavior of the crew. With this information, Navy personnel can determine the appropriate course of action and make informed decisions that ultimately lead to successful outcomes. Intelligence gathering in VBSS missions cannot be overstated as it helps identify and mitigate risks.

Targets of VBSS Navy Operations

VBSS Navy teams play a vital role in intercepting vessels that pose a threat to national security. VBSS operations can be conducted on a variety of targets, including cargo ships, fishing vessels, and pleasure crafts.

These different types of vessels pose unique challenges during VBSS operations. For example, cargo ships can be large and have multiple decks, requiring thorough searches to ensure that all cargo is accounted for and that no illicit materials are brought onboard.

In contrast, fishing vessels are typically smaller and more agile, making them harder to board and search. And pleasure crafts may be more difficult to target, as they often move quickly and can dock in a variety of locations. VBSS Navy teams are trained to adapt to these different challenges, ensuring that every operation is conducted safely and efficiently.


VBSS Navy Methods

VBSS involves several steps that must be executed carefully and efficiently to ensure the safety and security of all involved parties. The first step is approaching the vessel, which requires careful planning and communication to avoid any misunderstandings.

Once the vessel is approached, the boarding team carefully boards the vessel to prevent any potential escape. The search phase is then conducted to seek out any contraband and gather intelligence. Finally, if any illicit activities or materials are found, the seizure phase commences, which involves detaining the crew and bringing them back to the Navy vessel for further processing.

Challenges of VBSS Navy Action

VBSS Navy teams are an essential component of the Navy's mission to maintain law and order on the high seas. However, these teams face a number of challenges that can make their missions more difficult and dangerous.

One of the primary challenges is the weather. Navy personnel know that the ocean can be a fickle mistress, with weather conditions that can change rapidly and unpredictably. This can make boarding operations more difficult and increase the risk of accidents or injuries.

Additionally, hostile forces pose a significant threat to VBSS teams. Pirates, smugglers, and other criminals will often take extreme measures to avoid capture, including using violence against Navy personnel. As a result, VBSS teams must be highly trained and prepared to deal with a wide range of dangerous situations.

Real-life VBSS Navy Operations

The VBSS operations are crucial to ensuring national security, especially for countries like the United States that rely heavily on maritime trade. In recent years, the U.S. Navy has conducted several successful VBSS operations that have had a significant impact on national security.

For instance, in 2018, the USS Laboon conducted a VBSS operation in the Gulf of Aden and seized more than 1,000 AK-47 rifles. This operation not only prevented potential terrorist attacks but also disrupted their funding. Similarly, the USS Kidd conducted a VBSS operation near Somalia, seizing narcotics worth more than $7 million.

VBSS Navy training


The success of maritime security operations largely depends on the training and expertise of VBSS teams. These highly trained professionals play a crucial role in ensuring that vessels entering territorial waters are compliant with international regulations, and preventing illicit activities such as terrorism, human trafficking and piracy.

For the Navy, VBSS training is an essential component of maintaining the security of seaways, ports and coastal regions. The teams must be proficient in tactics, weapons, communication and awareness, and have a thorough understanding of the maritime environment. By investing in VBSS training, the Navy can increase its ability to detect and respond to security threats, and protect the interests of nations and their people.

3 Military Workouts to Keep You in Tip Top Shape

military workouts pushup

As a member of the military, staying physically fit is not just a matter of looking good or keeping up with the latest fitness trends. It's crucial for your job performance and overall well-being and in many cases, especially if you serve in combat arms branches, your life and the lives of others depends on your fitness level.

With intense training and demanding duties, it can be challenging to find time for traditional gym workouts while also trying to maintain a social life and take care of personal responsibilities. That's why we've put together this list of three military workouts that are specifically designed to keep you in tip-top shape while fitting into your busy schedule. These workouts will not only keep you physically strong but mentally prepared for any challenges that come your way on duty.

Benefits of military workouts

The key to military workouts is the focus on functional movements that mimic those required in real-life combat situations. This means you are not only burning calories but also building strength and endurance that can translate into everyday activities. Military workouts incorporate a mixture of high-intensity interval training, bodyweight exercises, and traditional weight training to create a comprehensive fitness program.

Mental toughness and discipline are essential qualities that are highly valued in various fields, including the military. To develop and maintain these qualities, military workouts are designed to push soldiers to their limits physically and mentally. These routines are challenging and intense, and often require extreme focus, determination, and perseverance to complete.

Aside from the physical benefits of military workouts, soldiers also gain mental fortitude and discipline, enabling them to handle stress, adapt to changing situations, and make quick decisions in high-pressure scenarios. The discipline and mental toughness developed through military workouts can also be applied to other aspects of life, ultimately leading to increased resilience and success.

Warm-up and stretching

Proper warm-up and stretching are crucial components of any workout, especially military workouts where physical fitness is essential. By activating your muscles beforehand, you increase blood flow throughout your body, providing more oxygen, and nutrients to your muscles. This helps prepare your body for the upcoming workout and reduces the risk of injury.

A good warm-up also gets your mind in the right headspace, helping you focus on the task at hand. Remember, stretching cold muscles can cause more harm than good, so make sure you build sufficient time into your workout routine for a proper warm-up and stretching session.

Workout 1: Basic Training Circuit

Military workouts have long been known for their intensity and effectiveness, and the Basic Training Circuit is no exception. Consisting of a series of exercises including push-ups, squats, lunges, and sit-ups, this circuit can be modified to suit any fitness level.

Push-ups work the chest, triceps, and shoulders while also engaging the core and lower back muscles. Sit-ups target the abs and obliques, strengthening the core and improving posture. Squats, on the other hand, focus on the lower body, working the quads, hamstrings, and glutes. By incorporating these exercises into their training regimen, military personnel build strength, endurance, and overall fitness.

military workouts running

When it comes to military workouts, reps and sets are crucial components of an effective fitness routine. It's important to approach these exercises with a plan in mind, aiming for the right number of reps and sets for your desired results. Generally, it's recommended to perform 3-4 sets of each exercise with 8-12 reps per set.

Military workouts are only as good as their execution. It's important to have a clear understanding of your goals and tailor your workout accordingly. This can involve creating a specific routine that targets areas you'd like to improve. Additionally, maintaining consistency is key to achieving your desired results. Consistency not only helps you build endurance but also helps build muscle memory, allowing your body to adapt and perform at a higher level. Finally, make sure to fuel your body with proper nutrition and rest to aid in recovery and overall performance.

Workout 2: The Ruck March

One of the best military workouts to build strength, endurance, and mental toughness is the Ruck March. This workout involves carrying a weighted backpack for an extended period of time while moving quickly over varying terrain. Not only does the ruck march help build physical fitness, but it also replicates the demands of carrying heavy gear during military operations. Not in the infantry? No problem, you don’t have to be. This workout brings out the best physical you without regard for profession.

Pushing through the discomfort and fatigue is essential to building resilience and mental toughness. Incorporating the ruck march into your fitness routine is a great way to challenge yourself and prepare for any physical demands that come your way.

Carrying weight during these military workouts is an essential aspect of military training. Not only does carrying weight challenge and strengthen your muscles, it can also help you burn more calories and build bone density.

It's important to track your distance and time in order to progress and reach your fitness goals. For beginners, it's recommended to start with shorter distances and gradually increase over time. Aim for at least 30 minutes of moderate activity each day, and gradually increase to 60 minutes based on your fitness level. As you become more advanced, you can push yourself with higher intensity workouts that challenge your endurance and speed. Remember, consistency is key when it comes to any fitness routine.

Workout 3: The Sandbag Challenge

This military workout involves using a sandbag to perform a variety of exercises that will challenge your strength and endurance. The sandbag allows for a unique and versatile workout that targets multiple muscle groups, making it an efficient and effective workout.

Sandbags have long been incorporated into military workouts for their ability to simulate real-life physical demands. Unlike traditional weights, sandbags shift as you move, creating an unstable and challenging load for your muscles. This engages more muscle fibers and can promote a greater overall muscle response.

Military workouts demand physical strength and endurance to support service members in battle and tough terrain. Incorporating exercises like shoulder press, lunges, and carries can significantly impact a soldier's physical fitness.

The shoulder press is an effective way to strengthen the upper body and enhance the shoulder muscles' stability. Meanwhile, lunges focus on the lower body, improving muscle balance and stability. Carries, on the other hand, help develop grip strength, which is vital for soldiers carrying heavy loads and equipment.

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Incorporating military workouts into your fitness routine can be a challenging and rewarding experience. By following a regimented workout plan inspired by military training, you can push yourself to new limits and achieve physical milestones you never thought possible. However, it's important to approach these workouts with caution and prioritize proper form and technique over sheer intensity.

While military workouts can be a great addition to your fitness routine, they may not be suitable for everyone and it's very important to consult with a trainer or physician before embarking on this type of training.