Author Topic: The Modern Warrior’s Combat Load  (Read 17285 times)

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Offline daftandbarmy

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The Modern Warrior’s Combat Load
« on: March 12, 2012, 20:08:06 »
The Modern Warrior’s Combat Load

http://thedonovan.com/archives/modernwarriorload/ModernWarriorsCombatLoadReport.pdf

Interesting. Too bad they never include fitenss levels as a success factor in any of these studies. Young, strong, fit people can always carry more stuff and slay more bad guys than people like me  ;D

I guess it's the negative influence of the PC police.
"The most important qualification of a soldier is fortitude under fatigue and privation. Courage is only second; hardship, poverty and want are the best school for a soldier." Napoleon

Online Jim Seggie

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Re: The Modern Warrior’s Combat Load
« Reply #1 on: March 12, 2012, 21:31:22 »
I will read this......looks interesting.
Freedom Isn't Free   "Never Shall I Fail My Brothers"

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Offline MedCorps

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Re: The Modern Warrior’s Combat Load
« Reply #2 on: March 12, 2012, 21:50:11 »
Also worth reading on this topic:

Another US publication: Load Carriage in Military Operations: A Review of Historical, Physiological, Biomechanical, and Medical Aspects (2010)

http://www.bordeninstitute.army.mil/other_pub/LoadCarriagePDF.pdf

Enjoy,

MC


Online Jim Seggie

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Re: The Modern Warrior’s Combat Load
« Reply #3 on: March 12, 2012, 22:15:17 »
The amazing thing - the body armour and helmet are already how heavy? That is BEFORE you take into account ammo, water, rats......
Freedom Isn't Free   "Never Shall I Fail My Brothers"

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Offline PPCLI Guy

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Re: The Modern Warrior’s Combat Load
« Reply #4 on: March 12, 2012, 22:58:32 »
The amazing thing - the body armour and helmet are already how heavy? That is BEFORE you take into account ammo, water, rats......

And the empty weight of the new rucksack....
"The higher the rank, the more necessary it is that boldness should be accompanied by a reflective mind....for with increase in rank it becomes always a matter less of self-sacrifice and more a matter of the preservation of others, and the good of the whole."

Karl von Clausewitz

Online Jim Seggie

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Re: The Modern Warrior’s Combat Load
« Reply #5 on: March 12, 2012, 23:04:45 »
And the empty weight of the new rucksack....


I think the average load a soldier can comfortably carry is about 1/3 of body weight or so I have read somewhere. Yet we insist on having soldiers pack a house on their backs,,,,,,
Freedom Isn't Free   "Never Shall I Fail My Brothers"

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Offline PPCLI Guy

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Re: The Modern Warrior’s Combat Load
« Reply #6 on: March 12, 2012, 23:17:48 »
My carrying capacity is therefore increasing every year...
"The higher the rank, the more necessary it is that boldness should be accompanied by a reflective mind....for with increase in rank it becomes always a matter less of self-sacrifice and more a matter of the preservation of others, and the good of the whole."

Karl von Clausewitz

Offline Infanteer

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Re: The Modern Warrior’s Combat Load
« Reply #7 on: March 12, 2012, 23:19:05 »
I think the average load a soldier can comfortably carry is about 1/3 of body weight or so I have read somewhere. Yet we insist on having soldiers pack a house on their backs,,,,,,

That's actually a number I've seen in a scientific study of load bearing that I read in the Marine Corps Gazette.

In my opinion, the killer is the PPE; I actually didn't wear much in Afghanistan.  My LBE (webbing style) and a daybag; carrying rucks is (or should) generally be considered an admin movement unless one is deliberately avoiding contact (e.g. LRP).  It was the body armour that was the killer, accounting for most of the weight.  Following closely behind was the water one had to carry.  Radio weight (generally batteries) and ammo was a close third).
"Overall it appears that much of the apparent complexity of modern war stems in practice from the self-imposed complexity of modern HQs" LCol J.P. Storr

Offline infant

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Re: The Modern Warrior’s Combat Load
« Reply #8 on: March 13, 2012, 00:13:42 »

I think the average load a soldier can comfortably carry is about 1/3 of body weight or so I have read somewhere. Yet we insist on having soldiers pack a house on their backs,,,,,,

Maybe you read it here:
www.army.forces.gc.ca/caj/documents/vol.../CAJ_Vol12.1_08_e.pdfSimilar
page 62:
Quote
The Canadian infantry manual (volume 3) specifi es that a soldier can carry 35% of
his or her own body weight and still maintain a high percentage of agility, stamina and
mobility.13 When the load exceeds 45% of body weight, functional ability drops rapidly. For
an average soldier (i.e. 80 kg) these limits correspond to 28 kg and 36 kg respectively. The
British Army’s APRE (Army Personnel Research Establishment) has conducted trials that
concluded that the economical load for a fi t soldier is approximately 30% of his or her body
weight and that the maximum marching load is approximately 45%

Online MJP

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Re: The Modern Warrior’s Combat Load
« Reply #9 on: March 13, 2012, 00:26:45 »
Yet we insist on having soldiers pack a house on their backs,,,,,,

We also as leaders sometimes are not ruthless enough in ensuring our guys aren't carrying useless crap either.  I agree with Infanteer that PPE is the largest burden though. 
« Last Edit: March 13, 2012, 00:52:52 by MJP »
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Offline daftandbarmy

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Re: The Modern Warrior’s Combat Load
« Reply #10 on: March 13, 2012, 00:44:44 »
I sent this article to a guy I know with (unlike me) lots and lots of combat experience. Good reply!:

"Lots of lists. Which is typical. Ninety pages to work out the average grunt has sixty to seventy pounds on his back as a minimum. Now there's a surprise.
 
And frankly why each guy has to have night vision and a cleaning kit is a unquestioned mystery. (Especially considering how only one man at a time should be cleaning his weapon.) Plus all that gadgetry they drape on the rifle. And as to knee and elbow pads, Oakleys, ear plugs, two MREs (for one day out)...
 
(Why the medic is also carrying a BP cuff and stethoscope is a mystery. If you can't recognize shock without these things he shouldn't be a medic. He's also carrying 2 liters of  normal saline vs one liter of Hetastarch, which is actually out there now. But never mind.)
 
They even admit towards the end that a quarter to a third of the weight always carried is armor and helmet. And how it's largely the weight and unbreathability of this stuff that leads to the ridiculous amount of water that has to be brought along.
 
And despite acknowledging this, there's absolutely no discussion of the possibility of just not wearing this crap. None. But they do think robot mules are a good idea.
 
Sigh. We're doomed."
"The most important qualification of a soldier is fortitude under fatigue and privation. Courage is only second; hardship, poverty and want are the best school for a soldier." Napoleon

Offline Robert0288

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Re: The Modern Warrior’s Combat Load
« Reply #11 on: March 13, 2012, 08:47:41 »
Until the robot breaks, then you have to carry all of its stuff + the robot.  And the additional 40 lbs of batteries which the soldier will have to carry to keep the robot moving.

Online Jim Seggie

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Re: The Modern Warrior’s Combat Load
« Reply #12 on: March 13, 2012, 08:51:56 »
We also as leaders sometimes are not ruthless enough in ensuring our guys aren't carrying useless crap either.  I agree with Infanteer that PPE is the largest burden though.

That is correct as well. Priority of loads should be ammo, water, rations then pers kit.

I love kit lists put out by pers too high up in the chain, especially when we are expected to drag toboggans half way across the trg area.

Freedom Isn't Free   "Never Shall I Fail My Brothers"

“Do everything that is necessary and nothing that is not".

Offline Thucydides

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Re: The Modern Warrior’s Combat Load
« Reply #13 on: March 14, 2012, 10:34:00 »
Just to put this in some sort of perspective, soldiers have been carrying 30-35 kg of "kit" for thousands of years. Greek Hoplites had tht amount of bronze armour, shield and weapons (and generally a slave to help them carry it and put it all on prior to battle). The Roman milites carried a similar amount, including chain mail or segmented armour, pioneer tools, rations and water canteen. Knights and men at arms in the middle ages had similar loads (and men at arms generally had no horses and fought on foot).

The only exceptional period seems to be the 500 years between the large scale adoption of gunpowder weapons and WWI, where PPE essentially vanished from the battlefield. By WWI, soldiers were again carrying huge amounts of "kit"; we have all read about British soldiers going "over the top" with up to 80 lbs of equipment, ammunition, rations etc.

Perhaps the introduction of superstrong synthetic materials and highly capable mini computers/communication devices rivalling the size and shape of an iPhone will reverse the trend (but then again we could be in the situation where I started: When I was a private I carried 100lbs of really heavy stuff. Now with modern technology I carry 100 lbs of reallylight stuff....)
Dagny, this is not a battle over material goods. It's a moral crisis, the greatest the world has ever faced and the last. Our age is the climax of centuries of evil. We must put an end to it, once and for all, or perish - we, the men of the mind. It was our own guilt. We produced the wealth of the world - but we let our enemies write its moral code.

Offline daftandbarmy

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Re: The Modern Warrior’s Combat Load
« Reply #14 on: March 15, 2012, 23:52:50 »
When I was a private I carried 100lbs of really heavy stuff. Now with modern technology I carry 100 lbs of reallylight stuff....)

Fantastic  :rofl:
"The most important qualification of a soldier is fortitude under fatigue and privation. Courage is only second; hardship, poverty and want are the best school for a soldier." Napoleon

Offline Farmboy

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Re: The Modern Warrior’s Combat Load
« Reply #15 on: March 17, 2012, 11:18:21 »
 Hense why you now see a shift from manufacturers from double layered 1000 weight cordura to new materials for pouches, rigs, packs etc.

Cut down ounces on each pouch, each item carried and suddenly you start cutting large amounts of weight on the entire soldier.

Offline PuckChaser

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Re: The Modern Warrior’s Combat Load
« Reply #16 on: March 17, 2012, 12:00:37 »
Hense why you now see a shift from manufacturers from double layered 1000 weight cordura to new materials for pouches, rigs, packs etc.

Are the new materials just as durable in your experience? I'd hate to save a few ounces only to have a pouch rip off in combat.

Offline Farmboy

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Re: The Modern Warrior’s Combat Load
« Reply #17 on: March 17, 2012, 13:16:09 »
Quote
Are the new materials just as durable in your experience?

Yes.

Offline Rider Pride

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Re: The Modern Warrior’s Combat Load
« Reply #18 on: March 17, 2012, 19:13:37 »
Reduce the weight even further by not allowing everyone to wear 4-8 different morale patches all over their body
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Offline JaY_III

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Re: The Modern Warrior’s Combat Load
« Reply #19 on: March 28, 2012, 22:41:06 »
Reduce the weight even further by not allowing everyone to wear 4-8 different morale patches all over their body

The stupid thing is some times you are made to take them off even at a FOB.
I had a BC Flag on the center of my Armour on the lower Velcro I had to remove.
It was always covered under my rig when we went out, so i don't get why it had to be moved.

I can get the Major League Gun Fighter ones and such that are on the outside as they are not professional.

Offline HollywoodCowboy

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Re: The Modern Warrior’s Combat Load
« Reply #20 on: March 29, 2012, 08:56:51 »
Old school  - 100 pounds of "old" $hit
New school - 100 pounds of "light weight" $hit

That's about it in a nut shell…
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Online Jim Seggie

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Re: The Modern Warrior’s Combat Load
« Reply #21 on: March 29, 2012, 09:09:18 »
The stupid thing is some times you are made to take them off even at a FOB.
I had a BC Flag on the center of my Armour on the lower Velcro I had to remove.
It was always covered under my rig when we went out, so i don't get why it had to be moved.

I can get the Major League Gun Fighter ones and such that are on the outside as they are not professional.
Jay - they pay people like me to enforce dress regs. You swore an oath to Canada, not British Columbia, which is part of Canada. Whoever told you to take it off was right.
Old school  - 100 pounds of "old" $hit
New school - 100 pounds of "light weight" $hit

That's about it in a nut shell…

LOL too true!!!
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Offline JaY_III

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Re: The Modern Warrior’s Combat Load
« Reply #22 on: March 29, 2012, 09:54:03 »
Jay - they pay people like me to enforce dress regs. You swore an oath to Canada, not British Columbia, which is part of Canada. Whoever told you to take it off was right.

And like I said, every time i was outside the wire it was covered up with only the Canadian flag showing.
I don't see how it hurt.

Offline Infanteer

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Re: The Modern Warrior’s Combat Load
« Reply #23 on: March 29, 2012, 12:03:52 »
And like I said, every time i was outside the wire it was covered up with only the Canadian flag showing.
I don't see how it hurt.

Because the guy beside you thinks it is cool and puts his "Infidel" patch on, and the next guy puts his naked lady one on, and then the guy in the other section puts all 17 of morale patches on and looks like a Christmas tree.

Gotta draw the line somewhere.
"Overall it appears that much of the apparent complexity of modern war stems in practice from the self-imposed complexity of modern HQs" LCol J.P. Storr

Offline ObedientiaZelum

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Re: The Modern Warrior’s Combat Load
« Reply #24 on: March 29, 2012, 12:13:09 »
Morale patches were illegal on my tour, which is why only the higher ups in those strange command groups in KAF were allowed to wear them.
Theirs were mystically sanctioned by "someone?", we were told if we got caught wearing them we'd be sent home- love O-group threats.

This thread is a really interesting thread and interesting link (ModernWarriorsCombatLoad), thanks!.   It was interesting comparing that list with my own (got some good ideas too)

Any reason why one might think it's a bad idea that every soldier carry's a set of NVGs?

Our body armor isn't that heavy, it's only 3 pounds more than our (empty) rucksack..
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