Intimidation is defined as being frightened into submission; inducing fear or a sense of inferiority into another where all spirit is broken and courage is lost. Standing in front of a 30-foot high, plywood and steel beam monster, with “rock like” texture, most men would be intimidated. But Marines learn to adapt and overcome in every climb and place. Recruiters from Recruiting Station Lansing gave poolees and their guests a firsthand look at how Marines adapt and overcame one very high climb recently at the Finch Fieldhouse in Central Michigan University.
Twenty-two poolees and their guests from RS Lansing’s central region gathered for a day of physical fitness, boot camp knowledge and climbing.
“It’s a good opportunity for the poolees and their guests to come out, have some fun and learn a little more about the Marine Corps,” said Staff Sgt. Matt Rumfelt, Recruiting Substation Central Michigan recruiter. “The poolees and their guests all are pretty excited about the wall climbing.”
The day began with an Initial Strength Test that included pullups, crunches and a one-and-a-half-mile run.
According to Staff Sgt. Torrey McClure, RSS Central Michigan SNCOIC, the recruiters run an IST for every poolee thirty days from signing and every ninety days thereafter.
“We have to ensure that every poolee that we send to boot camp is physically fit and ready for the challenges that recruit training will throw at them,” said McClure. “They have to be able to do a minimum of three pull ups, 44 crunches and run one and a half miles in under 13 minutes and 30 seconds.”
Following the IST and weigh-in, the poolees began their wall-climbing exercise.
According to Tony Buckland, a poolee from RSS Central Michigan, the wall-climbing and class about the Marine Corps was a great experience.
“When I decided to join the Marines, I knew that it would be challenging,” said Buckland. “But the way that the recruiters are teaching us how to work together and show support for each other while we climb the wall, I know that the Marine Corps will change my life forever. I always wanted to be a Marine.”
Besides the thrill of scaling 30 feet of wall with only a rope to protect you, climbing is designed to give an enormous sense of self-satisfaction, instill self-confidence and teach teamwork and self-reliance. It is also excellent exercise for the whole body and mind, requiring mental problem-solving to work out the correct combination of moves to make it to the top.
According to Rumfelt, having the poolees working together in pairs to overcome the wall was designed to prepare them for working as a team during the Crucible in boot camp and other recruit training activities.
Throughout the day, recruiters taught poolees boot camp knowledge during the breaks.
“Now, when I give you the command, ‘dress right dress,’ you will turn your head to the right and your left arm will go straight out,” said Staff Sgt. Derrick Sims, RS Central Michigan recruiter, while overseeing various drill movements.
“This has been a pretty successful event,” said McClure. “Bringing the guests along and incorporating a little fun in the events hopefully will result in more referrals. We had six guests (from RSS Central Michigan) attend and we got two referrals from it.”