By: Madison Thompson

FORT KNOX, Ky. – Potential Ranger candidates gathered at Fort Knox, Kentucky on June 4 to complete a voluntary, preliminary Ranger Physical Fitness Test (RPFT) to see not only what they excel at, but also what needs improvement.

There are several tasks that the candidates must complete. Candidates are tested on how many push-ups, sit-ups and pull-ups they could do in two minutes. The candidates also had to complete a five-mile run in less than 40 minutes to qualify.

Ranger Physical Fitness Test
(Photo by Nicholas Bafia)

“What we’re doing here to day is giving them a shot at trying it out, seeing how it goes and seeing how they do prior to actually showing up at Fort Benning and doing it for real,” said Ranger David Scott, a primary instructor for the supervisors in the first phase of Ranger School.

After their testing, the Ranger candidates reflected on what Ranger School is and what makes it important to them. Some candidates believe it will make them better leaders.

“Ranger school is about leadership skills and competencies and your ability to work with other people when you’re not well rested and you didn’t get a good night’s sleep,” said 2nd Lt. Christopher Larson, a Cadre for Cadet Summer Training (CST) 2017. “I realize Ranger School is a really great way to prepare you for being able to be in leadership positions. I know that if you treat any training like it’s real, it’s going to prepare you for deployment and make sure you’re ready. So, I figure Ranger School is one of the best ways to be ready to deploy as a platoon leader.”

Ranger Physical Fitness Test
(Photo by Nicholas Bafia)

Other candidates look introspectively and at their past for their commitment to Ranger School.

“I want to go to Ranger School because, when I joined the Army my freshman year of ROTC, I told myself that if you’re going to do something, you need to give 110%. Being an infantry officer means that you go above and beyond the standard. So, to me, this is 110%,” said 2nd Lt. Christopher Williams, an executive officer, OPFOR for Advanced Camp tactics.

The Rangers present know what Ranger School is and what is in store should the Ranger candidates decide to continue.

“Ranger School is a leadership school and it, among other things, tests students on their ability to lead people in a combat simulated environment who are in probably the worse conditions in their lives and they have to lead them through a combat mission,” said Scott.

Ranger candidates have a short time to prepare before their test at Fort Benning, Georgia.




Cadet Summer Training brings 8,200 Cadets through Basic and Advanced Camp this summer on Fort Knox. These camps are designed to help challenge, grow and improve various skills and leadership qualities within the Cadets. If you think you have what it takes to be a Cadet or if you are interested in a job after college click the following link: