Longhorns Prepare for LDAC
Longhorn Cadets Train Outside their Comfort Zone
Posted: June 24, 2010
Cadet Diamond performing an L-sit pull up
Each summer, following a cadet’s junior year, they must travel to Fort Lewis, Washington for the Leadership Development and Assessment Course(LDAC). At LDAC, they undergo a grueling 28 days of being evaluated by cadre from other schools, their peer’s scrutiny, and arduous work in a field environment where they must test their land navigation skills and conduct tactical missions.
To ensure that they remain in a high state of readiness, the cadets practice briefing OPORDs, receive an inspection on their equipment, and analyze terrain on the map. As for their physical training, they go beyond doing simple push ups, sit ups, and run. The cadets’ undergo CrossFit for their physical training.
CrossFit is the principal strength and conditioning program for many police academies and tactical operations teams, military special operations units, champion martial artists, and hundreds of other elite and professional athletes worldwide. The program delivers a fitness that is, by design, broad, general, and inclusive. The specialty is not specializing.
With this training philosophy, cadets of The Longhorn Battalion are able to do more than just prepare for their Physical Fitness Test, they prepare for combat. In combat the soldier must be able to shoot, move, and communicate with sometimes over 50lbs worth of equipment. In addition to the weight of the gear they must fight with, if a comrade falls, they must be able to carry him or her out of the fire fight as well adding another 120+ pounds to the load the soldier must bear.
Therefore instead of doing push ups, sit ups, and running for a work out, the Longhorn Cadets must train outside of their comfort zone and pushed to the limit. They train outside in the Texas heat, which can reach well over 97 degrees, pulling tractor tires, dead lifting almost twice their body weight, and running up flights of stairs with weights on their back. By exercising in this nontraditional fashion, the Longhorn Cadets not only attain a higher level of fitness beyond the minimum requirements of a PT test, they are also more prepared for the unpredictable demands of combat.