Effects of a training program for special operations battalion on soldiers' fitness characteristics

J Strength Cond Res. 2012 Oct;26(10):2872-82. doi: 10.1519/JSC.0b013e318242966c.


The aim of this study was to investigate the effects of special operations battalion (SOB) training program on soldiers' fitness parameters. The research was conducted on a sample of 25 members (mean ± SD: age 27.93 ± 5.12 years, height 178.64 ± 6.91 cm, body mass 81.42 ± 9.18 kg) of the Croatian Armed Forces for SOB, divided into control and experimental groups. Total duration of the SOB basic training was 62 days. The sample of variables consists of 12 tests for the assessment of fitness characteristics, 2 tests for functional capacity, and 18 morphological measures. Morphological parameters were measured according to the instructions of the International Biological Program. Fitness characteristics were measured with the following tests: 1-kg medicine ball throw from a seated position, standing broad jump (SBJ), relative sergeant test, 20-m sprint, the maximum thrust from the bench, push-ups in 2 minutes (PU(2minutes)), sit-ups in 2 minutes (SU(2minutes)), pull-ups (PU), thrust from the bench with 70% of body weight (BP(70%)), crawling and jumping, agility test 93639 with turn (A9-3-6-3-9), and sit and reach. Functional abilities were evaluated with 2 tests: 3,200 m running (SK3200) and 300 yards running (MBI3Y). There was a statistically significant difference in a set of fitness characteristics variables analyzed between the 2 groups in initial and final measurements in the multivariate level. Analyzing the results of t-test, differences of variables, it was evident that the difference after the SOB program occurred in 7 variables in the experimental group: SBJ, PU2minutes, SU2minutes, PU, BP70%, MBI3Y, and SK3200. Basic training for SOB during 8 weeks has produced significant burnout of the body for the participants who have completed their training. This led to a reduction in fitness performance manifested through the tested variables.

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Body Weight / physiology
  • Croatia
  • Exercise Test
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Male
  • Military Personnel*
  • Muscle Strength / physiology
  • Physical Endurance / physiology
  • Physical Fitness / physiology*
  • Running / physiology
  • Young Adult