Posted on Jul 8, 2018
1LT Director
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Anyone who has recently (2-3 years) taught (black hat) or attended Airborne School or the Pathfinder Course with advice or guidance for a 51year old? I have the opportunity to attend both courses after CCC at the beginning of the calendar year. I’ll be 51 but am in good shape, 270-290 APFT for my age group and looking to max it with a goal of 330 on the extended scale by then. I just want to ensure I know what I’m getting myself into. Graduated from both OSUT and IOBC plus other courses of three letter agencies over the past 30 years. Still very physically active. Any advice, insights or running music welcomed.
Edited >1 y ago
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PV2 Rifleman
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Yes sir, I graduated from Airborne school 3 months ago. Honestly it is the easiest course I’ve ever taken. Just stay awake ( don’t even let youre head slump) during the classes and take the training seriously and everything will be fine. Also the training for the jump will wear your body down more than the actual jump, all the running and practice falling, I’m prior law enforcement and just now trying out the military too see what it can offer my family, so I came in a lil bit more beat up than your average 25 year old and all the falling dident help. Just make sure you get a good exit on you’re first jump! Remember feet and knees together!
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SPC Signals Intelligence (Sigint) Analyst
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1LT (Join to see) Personally I did 1-2-2 others in same class did 3-2 it varies and could not jump at all in a day (weather, air Force, etc)
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PV2 Rifleman
PV2 (Join to see)
>1 y
Yes sir you should be just fine. And the big swing was the worst part and I jumped 1-4 so it was pretty wild
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CPT Inactive
CPT (Join to see)
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Don't look down, eyes on the horizon!
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CPT Inactive
CPT (Join to see)
>1 y
1LT (Join to see) - A 7 minute mile MAY be good enough unless everyone else is running a 6 3/4 minute mile!
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SGM Erik Marquez
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Call the school house, do not rely on ATARRs or your unit schools person..CALL and speak to the school house admin folks, confirm if you need any additional paperwork due to age.
In 2013, you would have needed an over 50 physical and a statement on that report from the doc that specifically says you are cleared for the basic airborne course...and NONE of that was in ATTRS at the time
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1LT Director
1LT (Join to see)
>1 y
Sergeant Major Roger that. I’m cleared for Basic Airborne as was needed when I joined the unit as an IMA soldier. My prior life as a civilian was used as a basis to attest to that issue which did a similar mission set as my unit. I’ll follow up to ensure I’m “good to go”. My biggest concern is more of a matter of personal pride than anything. Don’t wanna be “that guy”. Never have been and don’t wanna start now. Thanks again and much respect Sergeant Major!
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SGM Erik Marquez
SGM Erik Marquez
>1 y
1LT (Join to see) - Sir its not an overly physical course (or I did not think so when I went), but marginal physical readiness does distract a trainee from other things that need their attention.. If doing 10 pull-ups on the way in the chow hall is a stresser, your setting your self up for failure.
If running at a shuffle for 4-5 miles is a major emotional event, it may be a distraction to the rest of the day.
If standing, sitting, standing with all gear on is a task requiring 90% of your ability, it may be a distraction.
The better physical shape you are in, the less the physicality of the training will effect you mentally...
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1LT Director
1LT (Join to see)
>1 y
Thanks again Sergeant Major. Makes perfectly good sense. Truly understand where you’re coming from.
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SFC Leon Amer
SFC Leon Amer
9 mo
1LT (Join to see) - I enlisted after getting my bachelor, turned 24 in the middle of Basic, and had "Antiques #1, 2 and 3" as Platoon Guide, Asst. Platoon Guide, and Squad #1 Leader in my Basic platoon, all so-nicknamed by the Drills due to their prior service in 'Nam (my Basic was April - May 1984). By the time I got to Airborne School it was fall of '88, but I had a few senior folks in my class there too, though not as senior age-wise as you, sir. Good luck and check back here with us and let us know how it was! (ps, be prepared to pick sawdust out of places you didn't know you had for a month after graduation LOL)
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CPT(P) Company Commander
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Can’t speak to Airborne, but I graduated Pathfinder in March. It is incredibly academically challenging. Expect to do nothing but go to class and study for three straight weeks. Also, to prepare, start learning the nomenclature in the benning page (file is available) and the dificiemcies ver batum.

Don’t take that course lightly. It is no joke at all.
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1LT Director
1LT (Join to see)
>1 y
Thanks. I may reach out for some advice and insights. The studying doesn’t scare me just wanna make sure I nail it as I don’t wanna be “that guy”! Especially being assigned as an IMA Reserve soldier to SOCOM.
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CPT(P) Company Commander
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Any time. I’ll let you know the best things to learn now and the ones to wait on.
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