Red Phase at RSP

A Soldier doing PT, representing the PT everyone does during their first week of drill, Red Phase.

Damion Williams, Staffer

The National Guard is unique in a variety of aspects when it comes to the branches of the military. The Guard’s individuality in the scene of the military has its benefits, one of which being the Recruit Sustainment Program, or the RSP for short. The RSP acts as an introduction to the military lifestyle for all the new recruits, giving them a taste of something soon to come.

My RSP experience started a few days after January 27th, when I swore in. It began with receiving the ‘Kutztown Krusader’ newsletter, put together by the Kutztown RSP Battalion to inform new enlistees on how to prepare for their first drill. One of the highlights was the Drill Question. For each drill, we need to answer a question about the specialty training we will receive, for my first, it was about combatives, to my dismay, I had to miss to receive briefings about military retirement. When you arrive at Drill, there is a sign-in table. Every soldier must weigh themselves and sign the paper, adding their weight and height. After everyone signs in, we stand and wait to start PT, our physical training. We begin with the ten Army PT stretches, and since it was our first week, we had to do the OPAT afterwards, a test of our physical capabilities to do manual labor. Once we had finished that, we changed and went to the classroom, where we were taught a lot of basic, essential knowledge for the Army, like Rank Structure, Army Courtesies, and Basic Drill Movements. With that, day one was complete, but the next day, we hit the ground running. We began with a weigh in and PT, but instead of the OPAT, we did the 1-1-1, a PT test consisting of 1 minute pushups, 1 minute sit ups, and a 1 mile run, where I learned, that I am incredibly out of shape, with my 8:45 Mile getting absolutely annihilated by everyone else’s 6:40 miles. Once again, after PT, we were sent back to the classroom for briefing on many more military retirement and investment programs. After we had completed all of our briefings, we were finally dismissed to clean the place, and after cleanup, we had final formation and shortly after, dismissal.

The Recruit Sustainment Program is a unique program set in place by the National Guard to help ensure that the newly enlisted soldiers will be ready for basic training when their ship date arrives. It gives them the knowledge and skills they will need to succeed in their Army National Guard Career.