I'm back from my PRNC - Here's a few tips for anyone yet to do it!

#1
Hello everyone,

You may recall me posting something about going on my PRNC on Jan 19th 2015, well, I'm back now and first thing is first, I passed. But it wasn't as easy as I thought it would be.

I know there are a few posts about after prnc opinions, but a few are fairly old and I believe a few tiny things have changed throughout so I'm going to give you all a little insight of what you are going to expect when you do your PRNC/RNAC.

MONDAY:
First thing is first, you get to Fareham Trainstation (if you're at Collingwood, it's different for other bases obviously) and you'll be picked up in a beautiful military funded Transit Van with Naval staff (usually leading hands). You'll then be taken back to the RNAC centre at Collingwood and you'll sign in and get issued with your keys and room numbers etc. MAKE SURE YOU KEEP YOUR TRAIN TICKETS WHEN YOU ARRIVE AND TIME OF ARRIVAL, AS THEY ASK FOR THESE BEFORE YOU'RE ALLOWED ON THE BUS TO PROVE YOU ARE WHO YOU ARE.

Once you're changed into your new kit (which was actually surprisingly comfortable boots wise), you'll head down for your do's and no's from your OIC (Officer in Command) which for us was a Lt Cmdr. The first night is pretty easy and includes a few ice breaker games. Our leading hands were a right laugh, they literally took the p out of everyone, I was known as Mono because I hadn't pepped my monobrow up stupidly.. haha. Have some banter lads, loosen up and take it on the chin. You'll be laughing so much, honestly.

You won't have any scran until about 6pm that first evening, so ensure you're covered food wise for your journeys otherwise you'll be hungry).

TUESDAY :

So, the first day (Tuesday), we were "supposed" to be up at 6pm, but me and the lads in my room set our alarms for about 5:30 pm to ensure we could get our beds made the military way (you'll be shown how to do this and iron on the first night on Monday) make sure that you put maximum effort in with your beds, we had a few lads called out and given a right telling off for barely trying. And bear in mind the things that you do well, and bad, will be fed back to your AFCO and could ultimiately change the recommendation for service for you, so be wise and just try your hardest.
We did our run on the Tuesday, even though it was scheduled for the Wednesday. Before the run, we were in the gym with the PT (oh my lord, the pt's are strict), and we were doing sprint warm ups and you learn how to stand to attention when in gym kit, which is where your hands are flat and you jump to attention, literally. We did the run on the parade square and for the run it is 3 and 3 quarter laps around the parade square, it wasn't easy following the warm ups in the gym, but only one person had to use their extra 10% of time that you get. If you use the extra time, you will go down as a fail, but you can still pass the course. Make sure you check the Naval Website for running times as for my age group at 19, we have to do it under 11 mins 09secs, but it'll be different dependent on your age and gender.
After the run, we were doing run marching (which is where you run as a squad back to the gym, it's hard but do not moan. I got shouted at for stupidly saying "I'm tired", lesson, just shut up and do as you're told.

WEDNESDAY:

Bright and early lads, and straight down to the pool. OUR TIMETABLE WAS MOVED AROUND DUE TO WEATHER, BUT YOU MAY DO THE RUN ON A WEDNESDAY AND THE SWIM ON A TUESDAY.
The swim test was ok, one person failed and got sent home the same day - you then do it in overalls. Although tthey say this is voluntary, just do it. It's a good insight to raleigh and to be honest, if you refuse to do it at Collingwood, what's to stop the staff turning around and not recommending you because you didn't have the guts to try the boiler suits, divers board and the swim again. Yes, it's tiring, but you've gotta do it. The board you jump off at Collingwood is 3m, at Raleigh it is 5, which is about the drop off the side of a type 23 frigate. It feels like you're dropping forever, but it's a good adrenaline rush when you jump as a pair at the command of 3-2-1.

We were then given swimming circuits (which is one of the most difficult things I've ever done, seriously. I mean we were already physically f**cked from treading water twice, one in suits etc. Basically, you partner up, and as your partner races other people to cross the pool in the water and back, you'll be doing excercises such as press ups. You only stop when the last person gets back. Unluckily for us, we had one individual who didn't try, and was last for everything so we were literally struggling as he took his time to swim back. We did that over and over again about 7 times (each), by which point we were exhausted.
There are other activities on this, we visited a ship (type 23 HMS Richmond) which is in refit.

Thursday:
Circuit training. Let me be honest with you now, this is quite simply the most physically demanding thing I have ever done. Several lads puked in the gym, literally. It's all body weight, but it's non stop. I won't even go into detail with this as there's too much, but for God's sake, make sure you're fit for this... seriously. Do yourself a favour and prep upper body strength, this was hard, very hard. Final prep, rounds afterwards with your rooms and then taken to train station.

TIPS:
- Do as you are told, when you are told. Insubordination is an offence and can potentially get you kicked off the course. One lad rolled his eyes and was threatned with going home from the officer in command.

- Join in, show willingness and determination.

- YOU CAN STILL FAIL THE COURSE EVEN IF YOU PASS THE SWIM AND RUN. DON'T THINK TO YOURSELF THESE ARE THE ONLY ELEMENTS THAT YOU CAN FAIL ON, THEY CAN KICK YOU OFF IF YOU DON'T TRY, IT'S ONLY 3 DAYS PEOPLE, JUST GIVE IT YOUR ALL.

- Press ups. Get used to them. You'll get punished as a group if someone is late, you'll get punished if you ask a stupid question, not hoover correctly, answer back, not try hard enough etc. As a squad over the week we had over 200 additional press ups as punishment, seriously.

- Uniform. What one person has, everyone has. If your top zip is done up, everyone's is. If you're wearing a coat, everyone wears a coat. You get the idea. If one toilet seat is up, the other has to be up. If there's 3 loo rolls on the shelf in the toilet, the other needs 3 too. It's all about being the same. You'll get used it it.

- After all, give it your all. At the end of the day people, if you want a career in the Royal Navy, give it your all. Do not give up, do not moan, do not slack your effort. 100% effort at all times, no matter how tired you feel.



If anyone has any questions, throw them at me. I am more than happy to help as I've only just got home.

Happy Sailing, sorry for the long post! There's a lot more, but I don't wanna make it a book haha.

Aye
 
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#2
Hello I have a stupid question regarding the kit list for PRNC which I've managed to get a look at although I've not yet got dates! It's says '3 towels' now as these get folded into A4 for musters, and not to mention having to fit 3 of them in the bag to bring down to collingwood, my question is what size towels do you bring?!
 
#3
awesome post has really helped me a lot i am currently a personal trainer looking to join up just looking for a full time kjob as i can not afford a new passport at the moment then i will apply and i dont swim at all at the moment but will make it a priority as soon as i can !
 
#4
Hello I have a stupid question regarding the kit list for PRNC which I've managed to get a look at although I've not yet got dates! It's says '3 towels' now as these get folded into A4 for musters, and not to mention having to fit 3 of them in the bag to bring down to collingwood, my question is what size towels do you bring?!
Hi man, size doesn't matter. At prnc you won't use them for a muster, don't worry. The rule is and the reason for 3. One is available, one is drying and one will be wet. Meaning you will always have one available. Size doesn't matter, just as long as you can fit them in your case mate.
 
#5
awesome post has really helped me a lot i am currently a personal trainer looking to join up just looking for a full time kjob as i can not afford a new passport at the moment then i will apply and i dont swim at all at the moment but will make it a priority as soon as i can !
Get swimming. Make it your priority now, not in the future. Swimming is excellent for general fitness, too.
 

DTM

Midshipman
#6
great post mate,
smiled through reading that I can't wait now, still waiting for my dates.. but that has answered a lot of questions...
Thought I was training hard but i reckon need focus more on endurance, my run isn't a prob at all as a one off exercise/test but not sure if could maintain energy levels after a pt session...much to work in reckon

Again thanks ⚓️
 
#7
great post mate,
smiled through reading that I can't wait now, still waiting for my dates.. but that has answered a lot of questions...
Thought I was training hard but i reckon need focus more on endurance, my run isn't a prob at all as a one off exercise/test but not sure if could maintain energy levels after a pt session...much to work in reckon

Again thanks ⚓️
You're welcome man. You'll be fine. Make sure you're ready, it'll all pay off. Feel free to ask any questions, I'm more then happy to answer.
 
#8
thanks for the davice i was looking at the fitness requirments on the website and they only say you need to do the 1.5 mile run swimming nothing about the circuits so that has opened my eyes big time again thanks any tips on a training program to get my swimming up and geral fitness for the test as im more weight training and running
 
#13
Hi man, size doesn't matter. At prnc you won't use them for a muster, don't worry. The rule is and the reason for 3. One is available, one is drying and one will be wet. Meaning you will always have one available. Size doesn't matter, just as long as you can fit them in your case mate.
Ahh this man is a female lol but thanks, that explains it! Should be ok with my current bag then if I can fit some small ish towels in. Your post was really good to read as a prospective PRNC candidate.
Congrats on passing and all the best for your Phase 1 at Raleigh!
 

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