Log drills build unit cohesion, leadership
By Lance Cpl. Bridget M. Keane
| Marine Corps Recruit Depot San Diego | December 21, 2012
San Diego --
Working together to complete a common goal is a lesson learned throughout recruit training and the recruits of Company G, 2nd Recruit Training Battalion, learned exactly that through log drills aboard Marine Corps Recruit Depot San Diego Dec. 18.
Log drills is an event during recruit training that forces recruits to work together while carrying a log approximately 250 pounds.
“It teaches recruits unit cohesion, small unit leadership and how to work together,” said Sgt. Bradley Havenar, drill instructor, Platoon 2153, Co. G, 2nd RTBn. “They push through a painful experience together, which helps build camaraderie.”
Co. G is in their third week of training, where recruits still struggle with individualism while the platoon slowly forms, explained Havenar, a 29-year-old Midwest City, Okla., native.
“The main thing I try to talk to them about is the whole team aspect and leaving each other behind,” said Havenar. “If one recruit does his own thing that only makes him comfortable, the rest will all suffer.”
Recruits are split into groups of eight and are expected to carry a log. Together, the recruits carry the log for a half mile and perform various exercises with it along the way.
As expected, the recruits struggle to work together when carrying the log. This is where recruits learn about small unit leadership, explained Havenar.
“First, they’re all butting heads trying to figure it out,” said Havenar. “But one recruit will take charge, call a cadence and the rest will follow.”
Soon, the recruits realize how much easier it is to work as a team. After they complete the half mile, they return the log back to the ground.
“I really think that log drills stress the importance of teamwork,” said Recruit Seth Logston, Plt. 2153, Co. G, 2nd RTBn. “If one recruit doesn’t carry his weight, everyone else will definitely feel the impact.”
Logston, a 28-year-old Jefferson City, Mo., native, explained that he felt that communication was also a lesson learned during log drills.
“A recruit would take charge and call cadence, which sets the pace for everyone else,” said Logston. “If a recruit didn’t hear (the cadence) and get in step, it would throw everyone off.”
As recruits pushed through the log drills, they soon grasped the concept of teamwork which helped Co. G complete the exercise.
Recruits of Co. G left log drills with a better understanding of how to work as a team, something that they will need to exhibit during the next eight weeks of training when they reach the Crucible, a 54-hour field training, team building exercise.