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BUDS Warning Order

stew smith


This Warning Order is a course description of BUD/S, Basic Underwater Demolition/SEAL Training. There is some very valuable information in this Warning Order on subjects such as a course description on all three phases of BUD/S, workouts to get you prepared for the physical stresses of BUD/S, and helpful hints on nutrition. The BUD/S Warning Order is designed to prepare any highly motivated individual, regardless of athletic history, for the toughest military training in the world.

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Sea-Air-Land (SEAL) Teams trace their history back to the first group of volunteers selected from the Naval Construction Battalions in the Spring of 1943. Their mission was clearing obstacles from beaches chosen for amphibious landings, Thus, the first formal training of the Naval Combat Demolition Units (NCDUs) began. The NCDUs distinguished themselves at Utah and Omaha beaches in Normandy and in Southern France.

In the Pacific, the NCDUs were consolidated into Underwater Demolition Teams (UDTs). The newly formed UDTs saw action in every corner of the Pacific during World War II. In September 1950, the UDTs participated in the Korean War at Inchon, Wonsan, Iwon, and Chinnampo. The redeployment of the United Nations Forces featured the UDTs conducting delaying operations using guerrilla warfare.

In January 1962, the first SEAL Teams were commissioned to conduct unconventional warfare, counter- guerrilla warfare, and clandestine operations in maritime and riverine environments. These Teams were SEAL Team ONE on the West coast and SEAL Team TWO on the East coast. During Vietnam, the SEALs compiled an impressive record of combat success. Since the close of the Vietnam conflict, the ever-changing world situation and increased operational tasking have prompted the expansion of SEAL Teams in number, size, and capabilities. To effectively respond to this evolutionary process, Underwater Demolition Teams have been redesignated SEAL or SEAL Delivery Vehicle Teams. Thus, the newly designated SEAL Teams acquired the SEAL mission and retained the amphibious support mission inherited from their UDT forefathers.

SEAL and SEAL Delivery Vehicle (SDV) Teams and Special Boat Units comprise the elite combat units of Naval Special warfare. These units are organized, trained, and equipped to conduct special operations, unconventional warfare, foreign internal defense, and clandestine operations in maritime and riverine environments. These highly trained specialists are deployed worldwide in support of fleet and national operations. The wide range of tasks performed by Naval Special warfare and their outstanding combat records have earned an enduring and highly respected reputation.

Naval Special warfare extends a personal challenge to those interested individuals like yourself. This program will push you to your physical and mental limits, again and again, until you are hard and strong, both physically and mentally, and ready for the adventure of a lifetime in the SEAL Teams. Freefall parachuting at 10,000 feet into the ocean at night, traveling by small rubber boat for 100 miles, conducting a mission, then traveling 30 miles out to sea to rendezvous with a submarine is a typical mission for the SEALS and is an adventure most people can experience only by reading a book. So, if you are ready for both a challenge and an adventure, the navy has just the training to test your mettle. BE SOMEONE SPECIAL!

As a BUD/S student, you will participate in challenging training and encounter opportunities to develop and test your stamina and leadership. BUD/S training is extremely thorough both physically and mentally; but through adequate preparation and a positive attitude, you can meet its challenges with confidence. The workout schedules in this booklet are designed to prepare you physically for BUD/S. You are the one who has to prepare to give all you have every day. At BUD/S it is essential to live, eat, and sleep BUD/S. 110% is required of you every day. BUD/S is a challenge, but if you meet it head-on with determination not to fail or quit, it will be the most rewarding time of your life. Good Luck!


First Phase (Basic Conditioning)

First Phase is nine weeks in length. Continued physical conditioning in the areas of running swimming, and calisthenics grow harder and harder as the weeks progress. Students will participate in weekly four mile timed runs in boots, timed obstacle courses, swim distances up to two miles wearing fins in the ocean, and learn small boat seamanship.

The first three weeks of First Phase prepare you for the fourth week, better known as "Hell Week." During this week, students participate in five and one half days of continuous training, with a maximum of four hours of sleep. This week is designed as the ultimate test of one's physical and mental motivation while in First Phase. Hell Week proves to those who make it that the human body can do ten times the amount of work the average man thinks possible. During Hell Week, you will learn the value of cool-headedness, perseverance, and above all, TEAMWORK. The remaining three weeks are devoted to teaching various methods of conducting hydrographic surveys and how to conduct a hydrographic chart.

Second Phase (Diving)

After completing the First Phase, you have proven to the instructor staff that you are motivated to continue more in-depth training. The diving Phase is seven weeks in length. During this period, physical training continues, but the times are lowered for the four mile runs, two mile swims, and obstacle course. Second Phase concentrates on combat SCUBA (Self Contained Underwater Breathing Apparatus). Students are taught two types of SCUBA: open circuit (compressed air) and closed circuit (100% oxygen). Emphasis is placed on long distance underwater dives with the goal of training students to become basic combat divers, using swimming and diving techniques as a means of transportation from their launch point to their combat objective. This is a skill that separates SEALS from all other Special Operations forces.

Third Phase (Land Warfare)

Surviving BUD/S
The demolitions, reconnaissance, and land warfare phase is nine weeks in length. Physical training continues to become more strenuous as the run distances increase and the minimum passing times are lowered for the runs, swims, and obstacle course. Third Phase concentrates on teaching land navigation, small-unit tactics, patrolling techniques, rappelling, infantry tactics, and military explosives. The final five weeks of Third Phase are spent on San Clemente Island, where students apply techniques acquired throughout training in a practical environment.

Post-BUD/S Schools

BUD/S graduates receive three weeks basic parachute training at the Army Airborne School, Fort Benning, Georgia, prior to reporting to their first Naval Special Warfare Command. Navy corpsmen who complete BUD/S and Basic Airborne Training also attend two weeks of Special Operations Technician Training at the Naval Special Warfare Center, Coronado. During this course, they participate in an intense course of instruction in diving medicine and medical skills called 18-D (Special Operations Medical Sergeant Course) . It is a 30-week course where students receive training in burns, gunshot wounds, and trauma.

After assignment to a Team and successfully completing a six-month probationary period, qualified personnel are awarded a SEAL Naval Enlisted Classification (NEC) Code and the Naval Special Warfare Insignia. New combat swimmers serve the remainder of their first enlistment (2 1/2 - 3 years) in either an SDV or SEAL Team. Upon reenlistment, members may be ordered to additional training and another SDV or SEAL Command, where they will complete the remainder of a five- year sea tour. Advanced courses include SDV training, Diving Supervisor, language training, and NAVSPECWAR communications. Shore duty opportunities are available in research and development, instructor duty, and overseas assignments. In addition to normal pay allowances, Naval Special Warfare personnel currently receive $175/month dive pay and $110/month hazardous duty pay.


First Phase

50 meter underwater swim PASS/FAIL

Drownproofing test PASS/FAIL

Basic lifesaving test PASS/FAIL

1/2 mile pool swim w/o fins Completion

3/4 mile pool swim w/o fins Completion

1 mile pool swim w/o fins 60 min

1 mile bay swim w/o fins 70 min

1 mile bay swim with fins 50 min

1 1/2 mile ocean swim with fins 75 min

2 mile ocean swim with fins 95 min

4 mile timed run 32 min

Obstacle Course 15 min

Second Phase

2 mile ocean swim with fins 75 min

4 mile timed run 29:20 min

Obstacle Course 11 min

5 1/2 mile ocean swim with fins Completion

Third Phase

Obstacle Course 10:30 min

4 mile timed run 28 min

14 mile run Completion

2 mile ocean swim with fins 70 min

Academic standards required on written tests before graduation

from BUD/S are:

80% or above for officers 70% or above for enlisted


The following workouts are designed for two categories of people: Category I are those future BUD/S students that have never or have not recently been on a routine PT program. Category II is designed for high school and college athletes that have had a routine PT program. Usually athletes in sports that require a high level of cardiovascular activity are in Category II. Swimming, running, and wrestling are good examples of such sports. More ideas at Navy SEAL Articles / Books


RUNNING: The majority of the physical activities you will be required to perform during your six months of training at BUD/S will involve running. The intense amount of running can lead to overstress injuries of the lower extremities in trainees who arrive not physically prepared to handle the activities. Swimming, bicycling, and lifting weights will prepare you for some of the activities at BUD/S, but ONLY running can prepare your lower extremities for the majority of the activities, You should also run in boots to prepare your legs for the everyday running in boots at BUD/S.

The goal of the category I student is to work up to 16 miles per week of running, After you have achieved that goal, then and only then should you continue on to the category II goal of 30 miles per week. Let me remind you that category I is a nine week buildup program. Follow the workout as best you can and you will be amazed at the progress you will make.


WEEKS #1, 2: 2 miles/day, 8:30 pace, M/W/F (6 miles/week)

WEEK #3: No running. High risk of stress fractures.

WEEK #4: 3 miles/day, M/W/F (9 miles/wk)

WEEKS #5, 6: 2/3/4/2 miles, M/Tu/Th/F (11 miles/wk)

WEEKS #7, 8: 3/4/5/2 miles, M/Tu/Th/F (16 miles/wk)

WEEK #9: same as #7, 8 (16 miles/wk)




WEEK #1: 4 X15 PUSHUPS WEEKS #5& 6: 6 X 25 PUSHUPS



WEEK #2: 5 X 20 PUSHUPS WEEKS #7&8: 6 X 30 PUSHUPS



WEEK #3,&4: 5 X 25 PUSHUPS WEEK #9: 6 X 30 PUSHUPS



* Note: For best results, alternate exercises. Do a set of pushups, then a set of situps, followed by a set of pullups, immediately with no rest.


(sidestroke with no fins 4-5 days a week)

WEEKS #1, 2: Swim continuously for 15 min.

WEEKS #3, 4: Swim continuously for 20 min.

WEEKS #5, 6: Swim continuously for 25 min.

WEEKS #7, 8: Swim continuously for 30 min.

WEEK #9: Swim continuously for 35 min.

* Note: If you have access to a pool, swim every day available. Four to five days a week and 200 meters in one session is your initial workup goal. Also, you want to develop your sidestroke on both the left and the right side. Try to swim 50 meters in one minute or less.


Category II is a more intense workout designed for those who have been involved with a routine PT schedule or those who have completed the requirements of category I. DO NOT ATTEMPT THIS WORKOUT SCHEDULE UNLESS YOU CAN COMPLETE THE WEEK #9 LEVEL OF CATEGORY I WORKOUTS.


(M/Tu/Th/F/Sa) TOTAL

WEEKS #1, 2: (3/5/4/5/2) miles 19 miles/week

WEEKS #3, 4: (4/5/6/4/3) miles 22 miles/week

WEEK #5: (5/5/6/4/4) miles 24 miles/week

WEEK #6: (5/6/6/6/4) miles 27 miles/week

WEEK #7: (6/6/6/6/6) miles 30 miles/week

*Note: For weeks #8-9 and beyond, it is not necessary to increase the distance of the runs; work on the speed of your.6-mile runs and try to get them down to 7:30 per mile or lower. If you wish to increase the distance of your runs, do it gradually: no more than one mile per day increase for every week beyond week #9.




WEEK #1, 2 : 6 X 30 PUSHUPS



3 X 20 DIPS

WEEK #3, 4 : 10 X 20 PUSHUPS

10 X 25 SITUPS


10 X 15 DIPS

WEEK #5: 15 X 20 PUSHUPS

15 X 25 SITUPS


15 X 15 DIPS

WEEK #6: 20 X 20 PUSHUPS

25 X 25 SITUPS


20 X 15 DIPS

These workouts are designed for long-distance muscle endurance. Muscle fatigue will gradually take a longer and longer time to develop doing high repetition workouts. For best results, alternate exercises each set, in order to rest that muscle group for a short time. The above exercises can get a bit boring after a while. Here are some more workouts you can use to break up the monotony.


You can do this with any exercise. The object is to slowly build up to a goal, then build back down to the beginning of the workout. For instance, pullups, situps, pushups and dips can be alternated as in the above workouts, but this time choose a number to be your goal and build up to that number. Each number counts as a set. Work your way up and down the pyramid. For example, say your goal is "5".


PULLUPS: 1,2,3,4,5,4,3,2,1

PUSHUPS: 2,4,6,8,10,8,6,4,2 (2x #pullups)

SITUPS: 3,6,9,12,15,12,9,6,3 (3x #pullups)

DIPS: same as pushups


(4-5 days/week)

WEEKS #1, 2: Swim continuously for 35 min.

WEEKS #3, 4: Swim continuously for 45 min. with fins.

WEEKS #5: Swim continuously for 60 min. with fins.

WEEKS #6: Swim continuously for 75 min. with fins.

*Note: At first, to reduce initial stress on your foot muscles when starting with fins, alternate swimming 1000 meters with fins and 1000 meters without them. Your goal should be to swim 50 meters in 45 seconds or less.


Since Mon/Wed/Fri are devoted to PT. it is wise to devote at least 20 minutes on Tue/Thu/Sat to stretching. You should always stretch for at least 15 minutes before any workout; however, just stretching the previously worked muscles will make you more flexible and less likely to get injured. A good way to start stretching is to start at the top and go to the bottom. Stretch to tightness, not to pain; hold for 10-15 seconds. DO NOT BOUNCE. Stretch every muscle in your body from the neck to the calves, concentrating on your thighs, hamstrings, chest, back and shoulders.


Proper nutrition is extremely important now and especially when you arrive at BUD/S. You must make sure you receive the necessary nutrients to obtain maximum performance output during exercise and to promote muscle/tissue growth and repair. The proper diet provides all the nutrients for the body's needs and supplies energy for exercise. It also promote growth and repair of tissue and regulates the body processes. The best source of energy for the BUD/S student is carbohydrates. The best source of complex carbohydrates are potatoes, pasta, rice, fruits, and vegetables. These types of foods are your best sources of energy.

Carbohydrates, protein, and fat are the three energy nutrients. All three can provide energy, but carbohydrate is the preferred source of energy for physical activity. It takes at least 20 hours after exhaustive exercise to completely restore muscle energy, provided 600 grams of carbohydrates are consumed per day. During successive days of heavy training, like you will experience at BUD/s, energy stores prior to each training session become progressively lower. This is a situation in which a high carbohydrate diet can help maintain your energy.

The majority of carbohydrates should come from complex carbohydrate foods that include bread, crackers, cereal, beans, peas, starchy vegetables, and other whole grain or enriched grain products. Fruits are also loaded with carbohydrates. During training, more than four servings of these food groups should be consumed daily.

Water is the most important nutrient you can put in your body. You should be consuming up to four quarts of water daily. It is very easy to become dehydrated at BUD/S, so it is extremely important to hydrate yourself. Drink water before you get thirsty!!! Substances such as alcohol, caffeine, and tobacco increase your body's need for water, so, if you are going to drink, do so in moderation! Too much of these substances will definitely harm your body and hinder your performance. Supplemental intake of vitamins, as well, has not been proven to be beneficial. If you are eating a well balanced diet, there is no need to take vitamins.



Carbohydrates 50-70% of calories

Protein 10-15% of calories

Fats 20-30% of calories

You want to reduce cholesterol intake, found in animal fats and even fish. You need at least 3500-4000 calories per day.


Requirements and procedures for BUD/S training application.

Package Requirements:

1. Put in a "Special Request Chit" through your chain of command requesting BUD/S training.

2. Submit a "Personal Action Request" (Form 1306/7) to SPECWAR/Diver assignment.

Submit the following with your request: a. A certified copy of your ASVAB test scores b. Your physical screening test results c. Pressure and oxygen tolerance test results (if completed) d. Your completed diving physical (Form SF88-SF93) e. Certified copy of your latest performance evaluation report

Mail your package to:

SPECWAR/Diver Assignment


Department of the Navy

Washington D.C. 20379


DSN 224-1091/92



1. Pass a diving physical exam

2. Eye sight cannot be worse than 20/40 in one eye and 20/70 in the other eye and must be correctable to 20/20 with no color blindness

3. Minimum ASVAB score: VE+AR=104, MC=50

4. Must be 28 years old or less

5. Only men are eligible. (Demi Moore need not apply)

You Must Be Able To Pass This Physical Screening Test:

1. 500 yard swim using breast and/or side stroke in 12:30

Ten minute rest

2. Perform minimum of 42 pushups in 2 minutes

Two minute rest

3. Perform minimum of 50 situps in 2 minutes

Two minute rest

4. Perform at least 6 pullups, no time limit

No time limit

5. Run 1.5 miles wearing boots and pants in 11:30

*As a reminder, there are no maximums on these physical tests. Prospective trainee should provide the best scores possible, i.e., give his best effort

How to Go Spec Ops

Do you think you have what is takes to become a member of Naval Special Warfare or Special Operations? You have several choices now! As of October 2006, the Navy changed the way SEAL Teams, SEAL recruits, and all the branches of Naval Special Warfare/Operations do business. Now, SEAL enlisted personnel no longer have to select Source ratings (i.e. BM, RM, GM etc) and learn a job that they will not practice as SEAL operators. Now, the Special Warfare and Special Operations communities have their own rating source codes. To be a member of Naval Special Warfare/Operations community, you have four choices:

1) Navy Special Warfare (see this link for more details)
2) SEAL Sea Air Land (Phone - 888USN-SEAL for SEAL Recruiter)
3) SWCC Special Warfare Combatant Crewman
4) Naval Special Operations:

EOD (Navy Diving and Explosives Ordinance Disposal)
Navy Diver Deep Sea Diving and Salvage Operations

This change in structure not only affects the way SEALs operate but also Navy Divers, EOD, and SWCC as well. In fact, many times if a member gets injured at SEAL Training or decides SEALs is not for him, he can be transferred into one of the other special warfare or special operations professions. If the student has the desire and meets the standards of the other communities in SpecWar/SpecOps, he can attend one of those schools. All the SpecWar/Spec Ops communities are seeking to expand their size by up to 20% by 2010. A student can also choose another career path within the Navy. Below are the four steps required to becoming a member of the Navy Special Warfare/Operations communities:

Step 1: Choose A Spec Ops/Spec War Source Rating

Now competition for rank advancement occurs within the Special Warfare community as opposed to competing Navy-wide for advancement to the next pay grade. All Naval Special Warfare/Naval Special Operations careers have individual source ratings. A recruit will attend boot camp with one of these designations, and as long as he can pass the Physical Screening Test at boot camp, he can attend the next phase of training.

Diver: (ND)
Step 2: Training (for SEAL Candidates only as an example)

No longer do boot camp graduates have to go to a variety of A-schools. Now, all of the above members of the Special Warfare / Operations Communities use their own Pre-BUDS training as their A-school. For instance, a SEAL/SWCC recruit will spends several more week at Great Lakes training for BUD/S or SWCC training. After 6-8 weeks they will move to BUDS Basic Underwater Demolition / SEAL training or a SWCC recruit will go to SWCC training to learn their job / rating. Here is the SEAL recruit training pipeline:

BUD/S Indoctrination: (5 weeks Coronado, CA)
Pre-BUD/S: Special Operator A School - Physical Conditioning (6-8 weeks Great Lakes)**
BUD/S Indoctrination - Physical Conditioning (4-6 weeks Coronado CA)
BUD/S Phase I: Physical conditioning (2 months Coronado, CA)
BUD/S Phase II: Diving (2 months Coronado, CA)
BUD/S Phase III: Weapons, demolitions and small unit tactics (2 months Coronado, CA)
Parachute Jump School:
SQT - SEAL Qualification Training - Advanced Sea, Air and Land Training: (5 months Coronado, CA)

Physical Requirements: PRE_BUDS before departing for BUDS: **
1000-meter swim - with fins (22 minutes or under)
Push-ups: at least 70 (Two-minute time limit)
Pull-ups: at least 10 (Two-minute time limit)
Curl-ups: at least 60 (Two-minute time limit)
Four-mile run - with shoes + pants (31 minutes or under)
Step 3: Advanced Training/Placement (SEAL Community)

Upon graduation, the new SEAL will Receive Naval Special Warfare Classification and further opportunities for Advanced Training. The new recruit will report to a SEAL Team or SEAL Delivery Vehicle (SDV) Team in Virginia Beach, VA, Pearl Harbor, HI or Coronado, CA. For the first few months or more, the new SEAL will have an opportunity to continue Individual Specialty Training (up to 6 months) or join a SEAL platoon/SDV Task Unit and continue work-up training to prepare for future deployments.

Step 4: Deployment And Combat Operations

After an intense workup with your SEAL/SDV Platoons, you will be deployable for international operations. Typically, SEALs will deploy with their team to an area of operations around the world and then conduct a variety small unit missions.

How To Prepare For Naval Special Warfare/Operations Training:

Due to the Naval Special Warfare mission of increasing the size of the Naval Special Warfare / Operations up to 20% by 2010, the Navy has hired former Navy SEAL, Divers, and EOD members to help recruiters in every recruiting district screen, recruit, and prepare young recruits both mentally and physically for the various SpecWar/SpecOps schools.
Ask your local recruiter about the Navy Special Warfare / Special Operations Mentor in your area. The mentors duties are to help you prepare for training by giving regularly scheduled PST Physical Screening Tests and other workouts that consist of:

Swim 500 yds using sidestroke, breaststroke, or combat swimmer stroke
Pushups max reps in 2:00
Sit-ups max reps in 2:00
Pull-ups max reps in 2:00
1.5 mile timed run PT gear / running shoes SEALs wear Boots / Cammies

There are basic minimum scoring standards for this Physical “entrance exam” but if you strive for the minimums you have a six percent (6%) chance of graduating. Strive for above averages scores and be in top shape before reporting. This will require months – maybe even a year or two to get into “SpecWar / SpecOps Shape.” See related articles below for more details.

Naval Special Warfare Is Looking For The Mentally Tough

Some say that SEAL training is 10% physical and 90% mental. What does that actually mean? It does not mean that you will be studying more than PT, running and swimming. It does mean that you will be pushed physically past your point of exhaustion, then you have to dig deep within yourself and let your body perform even though you have nothing left in you. This is where 90% mental comes into play. You have to mentally will yourself past this point of exhaustion so you finish the mission at hand. It truly is a test of mind over matter.

To properly prepare for BUDS, you do not need to lift heavy weights in the gym, do martial arts for hours a day, soak your body in freezing water, or sleep in the back yard in the winter. All you need to do to prepare for the rigors of high repetition PT, miles of running, swimming with fins, and obstacles courses is climb rope, run, swim, PT and take your showers or baths in water that is 60-70 degrees Fahrenheit. No need to soak in ice. Water in Southern California ranges about 50-70 degrees year round.

Becoming SCUBA qualified prior to BUDS/ EOD/DIVER is not a bad idea. Using a regulator for the first time during diving phase can be a bit intimidating. You will have to learn dive physics and dive medicine, so an understanding of math and the science of diving will be beneficial to any SPECWAR/SPECOPS recruit. See a PADI or NAUI Scuba School near you, though it is not a necessity.

If you think you have what it takes, see a local recruiter and they will link you up to a Specwar / SpecOps mentor to prepare you for a very challenging career.

Related Articles from my Sitemap

Combat Swimmer Stroke
Top Ten Things You Should Know Before BUDS
SWCC Article

If you need assistance with training plans, check out the Navy SEAL, SWCC and other branches training guide at the Fitness eBook Store.

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