Tactical Fitness: Are Fighters Born or Made?

Tactical Fitness: Special operations training.

It's a pleasure to email you. I’ve been thinking lately – the difference between making it in special operations programs and not is whether or not a candidate is a true fighter. Anyone can get into shape, but not everyone is a fighter. I do have a question for you: do you think fighters are born, or are they made? Can I become a fighter?

Thank you.  

Thanks for the email. I have to say it is a great question and one that is very similar to the age old question, "Which came first - the chicken or the egg?"  But I will say I think it's a little bit of both. I personally had to work really hard to get to be average at certain athletic skills and sports growing up and had to work really, really hard to get above-average.

I likewise had to train even harder to go from powerlifting football player to pre-BUD/S shape in college. So I think it is a bit of the mentality that you might be born with of not giving up, never quitting, and stubbornness to achieve a goal. But, making it also requires a daily work ethic.

In my opinion, fighters are born with a certain set of skills and abilities, but they are made into a successful fighter, soldier, etc. by putting hard work and dedication into each and every day.

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General Fitness Special Operations Fitness Stew Smith Tactical Fitness

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Stew Smith works as a presenter and editorial board member with the Tactical Strength and Conditioning program of the National Strength and Conditioning Association and is a Certified Strength and Conditioning Specialist (CSCS). He has also written hundreds of articles on Military.com's Fitness Center that focus on a variety of fitness, nutritional, and tactical issues military members face throughout their career.

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