Gergő Siklósi - Basic Military Training 

01 Nov 2020

The sports squad was established in 2017 with the aim of recruiting athletes who uphold the values of the Hungarian Defence Forces. 

Gergő Siklósi

The sports squad was established in 2017 with the aim of recruiting athletes who uphold the values of the Hungarian Defence Forces. 

This is how I’ve got into the squad, too. But as our main focus has been sports, we simply couldn’t squeeze the basic training into the competition calendar. Due to the coronavirus pandemic, however, months have gone by without a competition. This gave us an opportunity to complete the training and become full-fledged soldiers, ready to be deployed to the border or into disaster areas. So on June 8 we started basic training in Szentendre.

Siklósi Gergő

In the first week, we learned a lot about the inner workings of the military, including the chain of command, salutation and discipline in barracks. In the military, there are strict rules for everything. Then again, it’s the same in sports, so it wasn’t very hard for us to adjust. We had to get up at 5:40 a.m. each morning and report at the barracks at 7 a.m., fresh-shaven and dressed neatly in our uniforms. We took part in various combat training, mostly shooting, but also had law sessions and learned about nuclear, biological and chemical weapons. We also practiced drill commands until we had them down to a tee. “Right face!” and “Left face!” were the easiest to master, of course. 

Based on the feedback we got from our trainers, we learned faster than regular trainees which we thought was thanks to regular exercise. They were satisfied with our progress throughout the training, although during week three we did make a mistake. We talked in formation, which is absolutely forbidden, just like moving. So we had to run up the shooting range and back, in 30 degrees Celsius, while wearing our uniforms, plus our tactical vests. It was no joke. But we did it. 

Week four was the worst. We had to walk back from the shooting range in almost full combat gear, which meant 20 kilos of extra weight on our backs, a rifle on our shoulders, plus our uniforms, boots, combat trousers, t-shirt, jacket and all. I don’t know how much we walked exactly but I’d say 9-10 kilometers. In the end, my fingers swelled up because the weight on my back didn’t let enough blood flow through my shoulders. It was also a forced march which is no Sunday stroll by any means. 

Siklósi Gergő

We spent the last week in Csobánka, where we had to take an exam and complete a combat practice. I had 117 blind bullets but ran out of them quite quickly. We used smoke and had even thrown grenades the week before. We pretty much got all the basics covered.

During marches, marching songs were a must, and I still remember them fondly. Especially because my friend was the one who had to start the song each time. Strictly on command, of course. 

The last two days we were preparing for taking our oath, which we did at the end of week five. 
I’ve grown a lot during the basic training, both in terms of perseverance and working hard. Some parts were definitely more difficult than others but even those are great to look back on now. I take pride in my achievement. I think I will be able to put what I’ve learned to good use in fencing. I don’t mean that I plan to shoot my opponents but disarm them in a more peaceful way, if you will. 


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