While many people dream of achieving the level of physical fitness that would enable them to roundhouse kick the world into an era of peace, most of us never experience the kind of grueling training programs that many of the actual peacekeepers endure. These law enforcement officials, soldiers, and secret agents go through training that makes Rocky Balboa look like a slacker.
These are the 5 toughest training programs in the world.
1. Navy SEALs
The Navy SEALs are renowned for their daring courage and physical fitness. This is a truly elite military force, consisting of only around 2,000 members at any given time. Twenty-one weeks of basic training are devoted to conditioning, combat diving, and land warfare. Those that make it through go on to parachute training and then SEAL Qualification. The latter lasts for twenty-six weeks and includes extreme weather training in Alaska. Graduating from this grants one the SEAL rank and then, guess what, even more training.
If James Bond was a real person, he would be employed by MI-6. This is Britain’s intelligence agency and is responsible for counter-terrorism, security and gathering top-secret information. Agents for this elite unit are given comprehensive training in hand-to-hand combat, and improvised weaponry. In addition to combat training, recruits learn those classic spy skills like undercover surveillance, evasive driving and explosives handling.
Spetsnaz, which includes a variety of Russia’s security and special forces units, roughly translates to “special purpose forces.” Members of these units are expected to be in top physical condition and ready to engage in combat at any moment. These may also be placed as bodyguards for high-ranking government officials. For this reason, they are often trained in extremely uncomfortable and even painful circumstances. Spetsnaz willingly endure torture and punishment to become accustomed to pain and thus less likely to crack under aggressive interrogations.
The Los Angeles Police Department has one of the most challenging tasks of any police force in the world. They must maintain order in a large, active, densely populated, and often dangerous city that is spread out over a very wide area. This necessitates that LA police training be more rigorous than some police training programs and includes extensive training in defensive navigation of an urban setting, riot management, firearms, and high-speed driving.
5. Shayetet 13
This is Israel’s most elite counter-terrorist forces. They specialize in hostage rescue, which puts them in extremely high risk situations. They train in the brutal martial art of Krav Maga to develop hand-to-hand combat skills. Since they live in one of the world’s most dangerous regions, members of Shayetet 13 must be prepared to use their deadly skills at a moment’s notice.
There are many elite police and military forces around the world, each with its own training program. While it’s hard to say which is the toughest, it’s safe to say that all of the above forces demand the utmost from their members. Anyone seeking to reach the peak of physical fitness could learn a lot by studying their methods.