You hook up your static line. You check your parachute equipment. You move toward the door of the aircraft – and then it’s your turn. The cold air hits you in the face and, suddenly one step later, the only thing between you and the ground is 1,300 feet of air. And, of course, three weeks of intense training that have thoroughly prepared you for this moment. Talk about a rush! Having successfully survived jump school, Soldiers graduate and are given their Airborne wings. Wings are a mark of courage, daring and skill. But jump school is more than an airborne academy. It’s a confidence school, a leadership school. Soldiers who complete the course leave with greater self-respect and self confidence. That’s something they have for the rest of their lives. Do you have what it takes?
Ground Training (Week 1)
During ground training week, you begin an intensive program of instruction building individual skills designed to prepare you to make a parachute jump and land safely. The equipment your platoon will train on are the mock door, the 34 foot tower, and the lateral drift apparatus (LDA). You must qualify on the 34 foot tower, the LDA, properly perform the PLF and pass all Physical Training (PT) requirements to go on to tower training week.
Tower Training (Week 2)
The individual skills learned during week one will be refined during tower week and a team effort or “mass exit” concept is added to the training. The apparatus used during this week are the swing landing trainer (SLT) and the suspended harness (SH). Week two completes the individual skill training and builds team effort skills. You must qualify on the mass exit procedures, the SLT, and pass all PT requirements to go forward to jump training week.
Jump Training (Week 3)
This is it! The previous weeks of training have prepared you for this week. If you are not ready to jump, you will not enter this phase. Week three is devoted to your five qualifying jumps. Before you make your first jump you will receive a review of malfunctions and aircraft orientation and be organized and manifested for the jump. Unless restricted by the lack of jump aircraft or weather, graduation is normally conducted on Friday of week three at the Airborne Walk. Guests are welcome to observe jumps at Fryar Drop Zone, watch graduation, and participate in awarding the wings. On Friday morning your company will out-process and following graduation you should be allowed to depart.
The U.S. Army Airborne school is located at Fort Benning, Georgia. This school is available to eligible Cadets during the winter and summer breaks.
Air Assault School
PHASE 1: COMBAT AIR ASSAULT OPERATIONS
During this phase you will conduct various training evolutions such as the famous (infamous for some) obstacle course followed by a two mile run. You will be tested with written and practical exams. The practical examination will be on aircraft hand and arm signals. The written examination will cover material such as Army helicopter characteristics and capabilities, and medical evacuation procedures. You will also conduct PT, a four mile road march, and a combat air assault operation.
PHASE 2: SLING LOAD OPERATIONS
Phase two is the most difficult phase of Air Assault. You will be tested on practical rigging and inspection of sling loads for utility and cargo helicopters. Written tests will also follow in phase two. Written examinations will be on Pathfinder operations. Practical examinations will be on inspections of various sling loads. You will have two minutes to find a minimum of three of the four discrepancies placed in various sling loads. You will participate in a live sling load operation during this phase.
PHASE 3: RAPPELLING
During the rappelling phase you will be tested on tying the swiss seat (90 seconds is the standard), ramp, tower, skid rappelling, and fast-rope techniques. Before you know it you will find yourself going out of an actual helicopter. The final test for Air Assault is the 12 mile road march with full combat gear. When you complete this test and march onto the parade field, you will be a member of the elite team of . . . AIR ASSAULT!!!
Northern Warfare School
The Northern Warfare Training Center is located in Ft. Greely, Alaska. The course is three weeks long with emphasis on mobility in mountainous terrain, glaciers, and inland waterways. Mountain phase includes climbing, rappelling, and medical evacuation. The River phase covers boat operations, stream crossing, and river charting, reading and navigation. The Glacier phase covers crevasse rescue, step cutting and anchors, belaying, and party climbing.