- 500-yard swim: 12:30 minimum, 9:00 optimum
- 1.5 mile run: 10:30 minimum, 9:30 optimum
And in two minutes or less:
- Push-ups: 50 minimum, 90 optimum
- Curl-ups: 50 minimum, 85 optimum
- Pull-ups: 10 minimum, 18 optimum
- 500-yard swim: 13:00 minimum, 9:30 optimum
- 1.5 mile run: 12:00 minimum, 10:30 optimum
And in two minutes or less:
- Push-ups: 50 minimum, 80 optimum
- Curl-ups: 50 minimum, 75 optimum
- Pull-ups: 6 minimum, 15 optimum
Still, meeting these standards are they are not a guarantee of entry.
In fiscal year 2014, the average in-fleet SEAL or SWCC candidate who was selected
did more than 22 pullups in his PST, said NSW recruiting directorate commanding officer Capt. Duncan Smith
told Navy Times
last year, .
"In other words, the requirement of 10 pullups doesn’t even get you looked at," Smith said.
Despite the bare minimum requirements, applicants in each monthly pool compete against each other for a limited number of spots, so the selection ends up with a curve. Of hundreds of thousands who contact NSW recruiting every year, maybe 10,000 work with a recruiter to prepare, and less than 700 will end up cleared for training, Smith said.
Basic Underwater Demolition/SEAL Training is known as one of the toughest schools in the U.S. military, but there are also several steps leading up to it.
To start SEAL prep school, candidates must complete:
- 1000-meter swim, with fins, in 22 minutes or less
- At least 70 push-ups in two minutes
- At least 10 pullups in two minutes
- At least 60 curl-ups in two minutes
- Four-mile run, with shoes and pants, in under 31 minutes
Many enlisted SEALs are already in the pipeline when they sign their contracts. Then there are those who select during boot camp and join the contractees at a five-to-nine week course with the Naval Special Warfare Preparatory School at Great Lakes.
There they are joined by SEAL officer candidates, who have gone through their own rigorous screening, a year of physical and mental training as well as mentoring in Coronado, California, at NSW's headquarters.
"Most of our sailors who go through those programs, even before they go to military training, they start that on their own time," said Fleet Master Chief (SW/AW) April Beldo, Moran's senior enlisted adviser, of the path to NSW.
It will take time to get women into that cycle, Moran said.
"We are less interested in headlines and a lot more interested in success," he added. "Success may take a lot more time than people want to write a headline about."
NSW is grueling enough for men, Moran said.
"With 25 percent staying after the first three, four weeks at BUD/S, you've got to be prepared mentally and physically for that."
Meghann Myers is the Pentagon bureau chief at Military Times. She covers operations, policy, personnel, leadership and other issues affecting service members.