Blood, Sweat and CQCB

By: Tprs LS Cowen and RT Stone, Recce Sqn

On May 8th, 2017, soldiers from the Regiment, supplemented by infanteers from 1 PPCLI, came together to begin Close Quarters Combat – Basic (CQCB) training. Led by Close Quarters Combat Instructors from Recce Sqn, as well as MCpl Godin from 1 PPCLI, CQCB is a course light on PowerPoint and heavy on fitness, physicality and bodily endurance.

The course began by immediately teaching candidates about the application of lethality in a close-quarters environment, up to and including deadly force. Candidates learned about the fatigue and physical effects of fighting, as well as how aerobic and anaerobic systems affect the body both while fighting and training. Lessons on the continuum of force reminded the candidates that they must always be aware of their obligation to use the techniques taught only in appropriate situations.

Within the first week of the course it had already proven to be as tough on the body as promised. Every day began with PT designed to test the body and mind which was then immediately followed by learning various techniques such as strikes, throws, breakfalls and chokes. The afternoons began again with another PT session before moving back to practical classes for the rest of the day.

The training culminated at the CQC Cell in Wainwright the following week where soldiers would put their skills and bodies to the test. Though the first day was short due to the time it took to travel to Wainwright, the course was able to learn techniques for bayonet fighting and still found time for PT. Day two saw the candidates face the highly anticipated Kill House. One by one the candidates were ushered into a series of rooms in which they participated in scenarios that spanned the entire continuum of force. It was here that the skills and fighting mentality taught on the course were put to the test. For those who made it through the Kill House, the next day was devoted to three bayonet ranges increasing in difficulty before concluding with pugil fighting between candidates.