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Prepare For Basic Training | Names & Locations List 2023

The US military basic training is the initial training that new military recruits and personnel must go through; it entails physical fitness training, military drills, weapons training, and any other basic military skills.

I get a lot of questions about how to best prepare for basic training when joining the military. These questions come from young men and women who aspire to serve in the Coast Guard, the Marines, the Air Force, the Army, and the Navy.

Military Basic Training Names

Military BranchName for Basic Training
ArmyBasic Combat Training (BCT)
NavyRecruit Training (Boot Camp)
Marine CorpsRecruit Training (Boot Camp)
Air ForceBasic Military Training (BMT)
Coast GuardBasic Training (Boot Camp)
Space ForceAir Force Basic Military Training

What is the Military Basic Training Locations List for 2023?

Below is a list of the basic training locations for each branch of the military.

Military BranchBasic Training Locations
Army1. Fort Benning, Georgia 
2. Fort Jackson, South Carolina 
3. Fort Leonard Wood, Missouri 
4. Fort Sill, Oklahoma
NavyRecruit Training Command, Great Lakes, Illinois
Marine Corps1. Marine Corps Recruit Depot, Parris Island, South Carolina 
2. Marine Corps Recruit Depot, San Diego, California
Air ForceLackland Air Force Base, Texas
Coast GuardCoast Guard Training Center, Cape May, New Jersey
Space ForceLackland Air Force Base, Texas
Military Basic Training Locations

Purpose of Basic Training 

Let’s start out by discussing the purpose of basic training.

  • The purpose of basic training is not to make you suffer. The purpose is to teach you how to become a contributing team member in the military.

The Transition from Civilian to Military 

Because most basic training recruits are young, with an average age of 18 years old, the drill sergeants need to delete the recruits’ selfish and lazy civilian tendencies and mindsets. They will then reprogram or reboot the recruit with a military mindset.

  • You have to be taught a completely new way of life. The military has its own language, paperwork, uniforms, and hierarchy. They value time management, honesty, order, and teamwork. All of this is very foreign to most recruits.

The Military Framework 

Some people say that the military breaks you down so that they can rebuild you in their image.

  • I don’t agree with this. The military doesn’t want to break you down.
Military ViewAction
They want to make you stronger and more capable. They want to reboot your framework of selfishness.
Teach you that it’s not all about you.Teach you to support the team.
Rank, responsibilities, and freedoms will come as you develop and demonstrate capability and competence.
Prepare for Basic Training

The Mental and Physical Stress of Basic Training 

Preparing for Basic training is more mental than physical. However, the drill sergeants will use the physical stress of basic training to exacerbate the mental stress of getting you over your selfish tendencies and becoming a better marine, airman, sailor, or soldier.

  • Rather than spending all night on YouTube and Netflix, you will clean the barracks and your weapon, exercise, and prepare for the next day’s training.
  • Rather than sleeping in and hitting the snooze button, you will wake up at 4 a.m., perfectly make your bed, and go for Physical Training (PT).
  • Rather than wearing your favorite hoodie, you will properly wear your uniforms.
  • Rather than eating junk food and drinking Red Bull, you will eat what you are told to eat, and you will eat when you are told to eat.
  • Rather than lollygagging or strolling, you will march in formation.
  • And when you don’t get something right, you will not be told, “Oh, that’s okay. Maybe you can do it better next time.” You will be harassed and punished with push-ups until you learn to do it correctly.

The Role of Intelligence and Strength in Basic Training 

If you are dumb, this will be very stressful. But if you are smart and can see the big picture, it will still be stressful, but it will be less stressful. If you are weak, it will be stressful. 

But if you are strong, it will still be stressful, but it will be less stressful. And this is why I recommend that you arrive at basic training in great shape.

The Physical Challenges of Basic Training 

You will face several different physical challenges in basic training.

  • Let’s start with morning PT. Although you are harassed 24 hours a day, seven days a week, until graduation, a major physical challenge is going to be morning PT. This will include stretching, calisthenics, and running every day. 
  • You will exercise in a very large group. This means that you will not go to the gym or use fancy equipment. You will do push-ups, pull-ups, sit-ups, body squats, and lunges as a staple for your morning exercises.

How to Prepare for Basic Training 

You can graduate from basic training if you’ve never worked out a day in your life, but you are going to suffer more. It is best to be prepared for basic training by arriving already able to do these exercises, especially pull-ups, and push-ups.

  • Depending on what branch and service you join, your basic training will involve walking with your rucksack or duffel bag to and from various training events.
  • But if you join the Marines or the Army Infantry, you will do a lot of extra ruck marching.
  • You should arrive at basic training already able to walk several hours straight and carry a 30- to 40-pound backpack.

Hand-to-Hand Combat Training Preparation

All basic training involves some variation of hand-to-hand combat training.

  • This is physically demanding and exhausting. I recommend that you arrive at basic training very proficient at your basic jabs, punches, hooks, and kicks.
  • In basic training, you will do a lot of strength-building. As you file into line to enter the dining facility, you will likely do a set of pull-ups before every meal. This is going to make you stronger.

The Obstacle Courses Preparation

You will negotiate obstacle courses. These obstacle courses are designed to test and build strength and confidence.

  • Some of these obstacle courses you will do as an individual and some of them you’ll do as a team.
  • Any time and every time you do something wrong, and this will happen a lot, you will be punished with push-ups. When your battle buddy forgets something or a squad member makes a mistake, you will be punished with push-ups. 
  • The push-up is the single most important exercise in basic training. You will do countless pushups before you graduate. 
  • I recommend that you get good at push-ups before you arrive at basic training.

Physical Exhaustion Basic Training Preparation

I feel compelled to address the subject of physical exhaustion. You will be pushed to and past the point of physical exhaustion every single day.

  • If you can only do 5 push-ups, you will be asked to do 10. If you can do 30, then you will be told to do 40. And if you can do 50 push-ups, you will be made to do 70. 
  • Either way, everyone is pushed beyond their limit to the point of exhaustion. 
  • The key is to keep trying. The goal is to never quit. Always give one hundred and ten percent.
  • Always giving a hundred and ten percent will earn you the respect of your drill sergeants and your peers and will help make you a more trusted member of the team.

What is the length of Military basic training?

Below is a list of how long basic training takes for each branch of the military.

Certainly, here is the table with the names of the basic training for each branch included:

Military BranchBasic Training NameBasic Training Duration
ArmyBasic Combat Training (BCT)10 weeks
NavyRecruit Training/Boot Camp7-9 weeks
Marine CorpsRecruit Training/Boot Camp13 weeks
Air ForceBasic Military Training (BMT)8 weeks
Coast GuardBasic Training/Boot Camp8 weeks
Space ForceAir Force Basic Military Training8 weeks
Military Basic Training Length

Summary of Basic Training Challenges 

Let’s make a quick summary of what we’ve already discussed.

  • One of the basic training challenges is that you have to get over your individual selfishness, and this is why I recommend that you practice being a great team member. You can do this at the office, at school, or on a sports team.
  • Mental stress comes through the physical stress of basic training, and this is why I recommend that you accept and accomplish physical challenges. 
  • These challenges will build strength and endurance. They will build confidence, and they will help prepare you for the physical rigors of basic training.

Prepare for Basic Training List 2023

The smart suffer less than the dumb, and this is why I recommend that you learn as much as you can before you go to boot camp.

  • Talk with a recent graduate. Talk with somebody who is also in your military occupational specialty.
  • The strong suffer less than the weak, and this is why I recommend that you arrive in great shape.
  • The drill sergeants will make you give a hundred and ten percent, and this is why I recommend that you get accustomed to always giving a hundred and ten percent to everything you do.

Military Basic Training Pay List 2023

The base pay for members of the military in basic training is the same across all branches. The pay scale is set by the Department of Defense, and this pay scale is determined by military rank and years of service.

As of 2023, the military basic training pay across all the branches of the military is $1,773; this is the pay for new recruits (pay grade E-1) with less than four months of service.

Here’s a sample table with the base pay for an E-1 recruit with less than 4 months of service across all branches:

Branch of the militaryBasic Training NameBasic Training Pay
ArmyBasic Combat Training (BCT)$1,773/month
NavyRecruit Training/Boot Camp$1,773/month
Marine CorpsRecruit Training/Boot Camp$1,773/month
Air ForceBasic Military Training (BMT)$1,773/month
Coast GuardBasic Training/Boot Camp$1,773/month
Space ForceAir Force Basic Military Training$1,773/month
Military Basic Training Pay

Final Thoughts on How to Prepare for Basic Training

For many of you, basic training will be the hardest thing that you have ever done up to that point.

  • I assure you that after basic training, the real challenges begin. But if you do your research, arrive physically and mentally strong, and give 110 percent toward the well-being of the team, then you are destined for success. Welcome to the team, and good luck!

Thanks for reading. 

George N.