Hitting the rucking trails again lately and figured that it was a good time to revisit the proper boot fit and foot care that we’ve harped on incessantly in our Selection PT posts. And for those heading to or thinking about volunteering for Selection, having the proper boots and taking care of your feet should be two of your primary considerations.
Your feet along with your brain are the two most indispensable parts of your body in Special Operations Forces. Your feet are your lifeline in Special Operations. We all love seeing those cool pics of guys fast-roping from Chinooks or tooling around in Little Birds but the bottom line is once you get off the birds, you’re going to be on your feet until exfil. That is why Selection courses in all of the services revolve around rucking. You can have biceps the size of Texas and be able to do 100 pull-ups but if you can’t ruck to the standard and better than that in reality, then you’ll make the duffel bag drag down the road.
Take care of your feet and they’ll take care of you. Having spent many years in the Special Forces Regiment, care for your feet became second nature and will be a very necessary function. For those young guys who are attempting Selection, seek out the NCOs or officers that have been either in a light infantry/airborne/Ranger units. They can help with tips of the trade and be good sounding boards for your preparation.
Boots, Boots, Boots: That just gave me a SERE flashback….ah I digress. The Army is a bit more permissive in terms of boots than the other services so this may change due to which Selection course you attend. So all of the high-speed boots will be a no-no in Selection, and you’ll have to wait until you graduate and go operational to wear those.The Army says boots approved according to AR 670-1, there are many to choose from, and it depends on what works for you. But some of the boots that have been popular and work for many candidates are the Garmont NFS, the Nike boot, and the SOPC Special, which will work only if you are in the Ft. Bragg area or will visit it before you attend the Selection course. I also own a pair of the Belleville’s and they are comfortable and have a good sole for that type of walking.