Army Fort Benning Military Lifestyle

Fort Benning Basic Training – Developing The Future Force

Fort Benning Basic Training is 10 weeks long. Trainees are identified by rank from the very first day at Fort Benning. So welcome to training “Private.”

Where is FB basic training?

Fort Benning is a United States Army post straddling the Alabama–Georgia border next to Columbus, Georgia. Fort Benning supports more than 120,000 active-duty military, family members, reserve component Soldiers, retirees, and civilian employees on a daily basis.

fort benning units

What units are stationed at FB in terms of BT?

Fort Benning is the home of the 198th Infantry Brigade, responsible for training Infantry One Station Unit Training (OSUT), and the location of the 30th AG Reception Battalion at Fort Benning including:

  • 1-19 Infantry Battalion
  • 2-19 Infantry Battalion
  • 1-50 Infantry Battalion
  • 1-46 Infantry Battalion
  • 2-47 Infantry Battalion
  • 3-47 Infantry Battalion
  • 2-58 Infantry Battalion
  • 2-54 Infantry Battalion.

Fort Benning Basic Training

Get used to not having privacy. You’ll be bunking in an open squad bay where you will sleep in bunks, and store your personal things and equipment in wall lockers.

When the drill sergeants need to address the platoon, they will address you as and entire group. In fact, in the very center of your bay they tape off a section in the middle. This is called the kill zone. Your drill sergeants will call you to “toe the line” (come stand at the very edge of the kill zone), and pay attention to their announcements.

Fort Benning – Reception

Discipline and structure is instilled the moment you arrive at Fort Benning. When you first get off the bus, you’ll be “greeted” by a whole group of “welcoming” drill sergeants. Don’t worry, you’ll survive the “shark attack”, as it’s called.

There is a purpose to your welcoming, just like everything else in Army basic training. By causing confusion and even a little fear, it helps begin the process of getting used to not just discipline, but the unknown loud and sometimes frightening things. As Infantry, these are things common on the battle field.

Reception week is about 72 hours, and involves a ton of in-processing and paperwork, but it also gets you ready for the rest of the training to come. 

Once the in-processing is out of the way, it’s on to phase one.

Fort Benning – Red Phase

During this phase of Army basic training you’ll learn about team development, start tackling the obstacle course and approaching and handling the confidence tower and course.

Team building will be a primary focus during the beginning because you will rely on your fellow trainees throughout the duration of training.

army basic training

The confidence course during week three will be one of the first major obstacles you have to overcome. At the Sand Hill confidence course you will climb a half wall with the aid of a rope. You will quickly learn why this obstacle is called the Wall Hanger. 

Completing the confidence course involves navigating a host of grueling obstacle. The ultimate goal of the course is to instill a sense of accomplishment as you make your way through it.

Once you complete the obstacles courses you will come to realize that  “I can do this, I can be a Soldier.”

Whether you’re from the city, the country or somewhere in between, coming bright into the obstacle course and being able to complete it is a step in the right direction towards becoming a Soldier!

Fort Benning – White Phase

After the confidence course, trainees will move on to rifle marksmanship in Phase Two(white phase) of Army basic training. This phase is crucial for those who will become an infantryman once training is complete.

Trainees start training with the M4 carbine and learn the weapon’s clearance procedures, safety rules, and weapons maintenance. As training moves along, you will shoot with back-up iron sights as well as the close combat optic. You will go over single, multiple, timed, and moving targets prior to the rifle qualification.

Many of you will be shooting a firearm for the first time, there will also be many trainees who will have grown up around weapons. So, the teaching bell curve can be steep, just hang in there. If you don’t know you’ll learn and if you do know, you’ll make “expert” that much faster. By the time you finish this training, no matter where you started on the experience scale, you’ll be an effective shooter.

Fort Benning – Blue Phase

Blue Phase, also know as heavy weapons training, will introduce you to the -50 caliber, hand grenades, the M320 grenade launcher, the automatic squad weapon called the M249, the M240 and more. You will also go through extensive land navigation training during this part of Army basic training.

You’ll also be tested on first aid, which is taught continuously to infantrymen (this terms includes female trainees, too) throughout Army basic training.

Other skills you will become familiar with are weapons clearing procedures, how to use radios, and buddy and fire team tactics.

The buddy and fire team training is crucial. As you become infantrymen, you’re going to be operating in fire teams at the squad level.

For Soldiers in other military occupational specialties, the end of blue phase marks their graduation from Fort Benning basic training. But, those who are in infantry will go on to phases four and five. During those phases Soldiers will learn the finer points of infantry combat, and receive more comprehensive training in battlefield skills and tactics.

Sandboxx Tip: In the military there are no excuses. Never offer an excuse. Your commanding officer or NCO doesn’t want to hear your excuse unless they ask for it. Any reason you may offer for how or why something happened (or didn’t happen) will be treated as an excuse. Your best response is “Yes Sir/Ma’am, I’m on it.

Getting mail at Fort Benning

During Army basic training, your only contact with the outside world will be through letters. You will come to look forward to mail call every day, and enjoy receiving letters from home.

Your friends and family can use Sandboxx to send you letters during basic training. Letters are sent overnight so you can hear from home faster. Tell your friends and family to check out Sandboxx when before you leave for basic training.


  1. My son is not getting the mail I have been sending. I need help getting his mail to him. I have downloaded the Sandboxx app and got a package, but he has not gotten any mail.

    Maybe I’m doing something wrong, please help!!!

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