Last Updated: June 29th, 2024By

Before the sun was up on the morning of June 28, 2024, Cadets with 4th Regiment, Advanced Camp partook in a six-mile battle march and shoot. Cadets go on a six-mile ruck march followed by a training exercise challenging Cadets to shoot under stressful conditions. However, that is not the conclusion of their training day. Under the heat of the Kentucky sun, Cadets then continue their training by taking on the Hand Grenade Assault Course.

The course has seven different stations where Cadets practice how to throw a mock M67 fragmentation grenade from different positions. Six stations challenge Cadets to practice throwing with the last station being an identification test naming different types of explosive weapons and their intended purpose.

The grenade course is not something every Cadet is used to. Many Cadets need several practice rounds to understand the correct throwing maneuver to get an adequate distance to engage with the target ahead.

“I focus on a few different things while throwing, with one being shifting my weight and using my body, so I am not just using my arms, and shifting my weight from by back foot to my front foot,” said Cadet Rebekah Rudd from Allegheny College in Pennsylvania. “I also focus on the follow through and how the power will come from your guide arm and ensuring that you pull it back as fast as possible.”

Cadets go through a series of practice throws both on and off the course. The goal is to hit a target from distances between 25 to 30 meters. The practice throws before the official qualification course allows Cadets to become more familiar with handling this specific type of grenade while also instilling confidence in themselves proving they can throw to that specific distance.

This course is just as much a physical challenge as it is a mental challenge. While throwing the grenade, Cadets must shout a series of commands fast and effectively. These commands could be the difference between safely deploying an explosive and injuring a fellow Soldier.

“I learned that it is best to not overcomplicate anything that we are doing here and just focus on our practice, our instruction and the task at hand,” said Cadet Charlie Schultz from the University of Southern California.

The hand grenade course shows Cadets that even if they are unable to throw a full 30 meters, they now have the ability to teach and lead others on the correct form and execution.

“This is one of the basic Solider skills, so the troops that we are leading will be able to be taught effectively when we may have to lead and instruct these lanes in the future.” Rudd said.

In this training and the remainder of CST, these Cadets will prove that they can embark on and complete challenging tasks even if they are several meters away.

About the Author: Morgan Edwards