How to Prepare for Navy Recruit Training

All Navy recruits must complete boot camp training at the Great Lakes Naval Training Center. More than 54,000 recruits complete training at this facility every year. Instead of going in fresh, it makes sense to prepare for Navy recruit training several weeks before heading towards Great Lakes, Illinois. That way, you will get a head start on your training and you will know what to expect.

Want to join the Navy? Start by filling out this form for additional, no obligation information.

Memorize the Navy’s Rates

Most branches of the military refer to a person’s status and authority as rank. In the Navy, though, you should refer to it as a person’s rate. Memorize these rates before going to training. It could save you a lot of embarrassment, not to mention extra training used as punishment for misidentifying a superior officer.

There are three basic ratings within the Navy:

  • Enlisted personnel
  • Warrant officers
  • Commissioned officers

While there are several grades within these categories, it’s most important to remember that commissioned officers have more authority than warrant officers and enlisted personnel. Warrant officers, however, are above enlisted personnel. If a recruit has just reached training, he or she is most likely at the very bottom of the hierarchy. That makes it important to give everyone proper respect.

Get in Better Shape

Navy recruit training will push you to your physical and mental limits. You can make this period less torturous by getting in better shape now.

Luckily, the Navy has a Personal Training Plan booklet that will help you prepare. It provides information about cardiovascular fitness, stretching, muscular strength, and developing aerobic endurance through a number of activities.

Best of all, you can benefit from the booklet’s training plan no matter what your current physical condition is. The Navy built the plan around its FITT concept. This program encourages:

  • Frequency – exercise three to five times every week
  • Intensity – hit your target heart rate
  • Time – get 20 to 60 minutes of aerobic activity
  • Type of Activity – choose an activity that you will enjoy

It doesn’t matter whether you start off running 10 miles a day or just walking around the block for 20 minutes. What matters is that you start where you are so that you can improve your physical fitness and prepare for Navy recruit training.

Learn Drill Basics

No one expects you to immediately know every aspect of Navy drill exercises, but you can make your life a lot easier by learning the basics before recruit training. When you hear “about face,” do you know what to do? Essentially, it means to turn around, but there is a specific way to do it that involves proper foot placement.

Other terms and movements you should know include:

  • Rest positions
  • Mark time
  • Present arms
  • Half step
  • Forward march

You might think you already know what these commands mean, but there are often details that civilians don’t realize.

Navy recruit training will transform your body and mind, but that doesn’t mean you can’t get ready before training really starts. The more work you do now, the easier it will be once your reach Great Lakes.

Ready to get started? Fill out this form for more information about joining the Navy and starting your Navy recruit training.


9 Responses to "How to Prepare for Navy Recruit Training"

  1. Libert Stephen  October 21, 2012 at 5:42 pm

    I’ve heard so much about the navy i hope it does change me

  2. Robert Grantham  October 22, 2012 at 12:22 pm

    This is for my son he is 20 years old dropped out of high school which he was in iep classes had a hard time in school so he went to job corp. in Reno Nv for welding and to get an education should graduate Feduary 2013.He is a slow learner not book smart but common sense smart, really can fix almost anything good machanical skills,he good kid trying to do the the wright thing he would like a career in the navy as a welder.he took the writen test and scored really low is there any help for him to pass the test.

    Thanks Robert

  3. seth abu wunpini  October 30, 2012 at 3:35 am

    dear sir. i won you to enploy me as a us navy i has a power strenf to bee a a ghanaian living in ghana thank you .

  4. NDAMBOU MENDY  November 14, 2012 at 2:34 am


    I will like to join the Navy but am not in the US is there any possibly way that you can help me join.


  5. Charles Robert Imeh  March 5, 2013 at 1:00 am

    I want to join the Navy

  6. Charles Robert Imeh  March 5, 2013 at 1:06 am

    Please, I am in Nigeria, I want to join the the US Navy. Thank you.

  7. Adeola Tayo  November 16, 2013 at 12:21 pm

    am a nigerian,actually have been thirsty to join us navy even after l graduated from higher institution.l love this job with all my heart and my body,l really need help.Thank you and God bless us navy.

  8. Omaru kaba marah  November 23, 2013 at 3:51 pm

    I would like to be part of the U.S. NAVY please accept me.

  9. Justice Addai  August 17, 2014 at 8:23 am

    Hi, I’m not a US citizen but want to join the US
    Please may I know if there is any possible means
    to join. I’m a Ghanaian.
    Thank you!

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