Marines Commando: Stages and standards

Most people wouldn’t even contemplate putting their body under the strain that joining the Royal Marines requires. Now you’ve decided to become a Royal Marines Commando, you’re here because you want to make sure you make the grade.

You’ll faced with an exacting standards that you’ll need to meet and exceed if you’re to prove you can hack it as a Royal Marines Commando. Most of these tests have a minimum requirement, but it is a key part of the Royal Marines ethos to push to the limit, regardless of what is acceptable.

Pre-joining Fitness Test (PJFT)

You will be expected to push yourself to produce your best effort. If you’re going to excel at the PJFT (and in your initial training), it’s critical that you get in the best possible physical condition.

Swimming requirements

  • Step off a 3m diving board in swimming costume or shorts (without kit)
  • Swim approximately 80m, using the Breast Stroke Technique with no time limit
  • Confidently retrieve a brick from the bottom of the pool at 5 meters then tread water for 2 minutes
  • Climb out of the pool, without using a ladder


During this first mandated summative assessment, no goggles are to be worn unless a recruit has a medical reason. In the BST (Battle Swimming Assessment)  no goggles are to be worn, those with medical reasons are not exempt. 


The test takes place at a Nuffield fitness centre. They’re all over the country, so you’ll be able to find one near you


Typically, we’ll invite you to the PJFT within 28 days of you passing your medical