Are You Fit Enough To Join One Of Malaysia's Most Elite Military Units?

Their fitness tests are no joke.

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Are You Fit Enough To Join One Of Malaysia's Most Elite Military Units?

You don't want to mess with these people.

Did you know that somewhere in Malaysia, there's a group of men who are so feared, a mention of their name would send shivers down a baddie's spine? 

Meet the members of Pasukan Khas Laut (or PASKAL for short), the military unit tasked to keep our seas safe from invasion.

One of the world's finest.
They may not be as popular as the US Navy Seal, but trust us; they're one of the most elite military units in the world.

The men from PASKAL were put through a rigorous training programme, where only the best of the best will be chosen to join this exclusive unit.

In fact, their reputation is so well-respected, a host of military units around the world, including the US Navy Seal, would come all the way to Malaysia to train with the team.

A group of mean men.
Their training programme is a stuff of legend, as the physical challenges are so tough, we were told that less than ten trainees out of a hundred would make it through the training.

We spoke to a lieutenant commander (who doesn't want to be named for privacy issues) from PASKAL, and he broke down for us some of the physical tests trainees have to go through just to prove that they have what it takes to join the military unit:


#1 A 6.8km run

All trainees would have to complete a 6.8km run in less than 32 minutes. Any longer than that, you're out!

#2 Push ups

A very basic assessment test, trainees must do a minimum of 50 push ups in less than one-and-a-half minutes.

#3 Sit ups

Again, it's a very simple assessment test, but you must do at least 41 sit ups in less than one-and-a-half minutes. It's easier said than done.

Work out or tap out.
#4 Pull ups

The passing mark for pull ups is just nine, but you would have to do it non-stop. No time to rest, boys.

#5 Flutter kicks

We're pretty sure this exercise is one of your staples at the gym, but PASKAL trainees must do at least 100 flutter kicks non-stop to pass this test.

#6 Eight Count Body Builder

This is where things get hardcore. PASKAL trainees must do at least 26 reps of the Eight Count Body Builder workout, a multi-part exercise that employs intense cardio with resistance training, in less than four minutes.

#7 Rope climb

PASKAL trainees would have to climb seven meters up - without using their legs! Our arms are hurting just thinking about this.

#8 Rope climb (with ascender)

It may sound easy, but trainees would have to climb up ten meters in less than a minute. We can't even hold on to a rope for one minute, so we confirm fail.

Staying alive.


#1 Long distance swimming (sea)

PASKAL trainees would have to swim 3.2km in the ocean in less 64 minutes - in full military attire!

#2 500-meter freestyle swimming (pool)

The trainees would have to complete a 500-meter freestyle swim in less than 10 minutes. We take longer to get into the pool.

#3 500-meter side stroke swimming (pool)

Trainees would have to also complete the side stroke in a time of less than 12 minutes.

#4 500-meter mixed-style swimming (pool)

For the finale, PASKAL trainees would have to swim 500-meters (200-meter breaststroke, 200-meter side stroke and 100-meter freestyle) in less than 12 minutes.

Eyes of a tiger.
If you think the challenges are insane, here's another piece of shocking news: this is just a small part of the training.

The lieutenant commander told us that a basic PASKAL course lasts for three months, and only those who survive the above mentioned physcial tests will be allowed to continue with the course.

During the period, the trainees would have to go through several more physical tests, such as the Combat Drown Proofing (trainees will have their hands and feet bound and dumped into the water) and other basic survival tests.

Knock, knock.
Also, PASKAL trainees have to go through six training stages involving different terrains such as swamp, jungle and of course, the sea.

Then, they will be exposed to a vigorous commando training, where they will learn how to operate firearms and jump out of an airplane, among other things.

Looking at the 'torture' these guys have to go through, it's really easy to see why PASKAL is one of the world's most elite combat squads.

You can check out their story when 'PASKAL: The Movie' opens in Malaysian cinemas in September.

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