How should you prepare for encampment?
Encampment is not a military boot camp; however, the training is intense. Although you will receive plenty of basic cadet training at encampment, some training is required at your home squadron before encampment. You will need to understand the basic concepts of CAP customs and courtesies, the basic concepts of CAP drill, and the basic concepts of proper uniform wear. Encampment should not be your first exposure to these subjects. Your home squadron commander has responsibility for this training.
At encampment, physical conditioning is important. Each day begins early, with Physical Training (PT). All cadets participate in team volleyball competitions and other athletic activities during the week. Although you do not have to be in peak physical condition to attend encampment, a regular exercise program, to include running, will help you to prepare. You will be running almost every day. Sit-ups, pushups, jumping jacks, and leg-lifts are great exercises. You cannot run too much when preparing for encampment! Be sure to start out slowly and build up your endurance. If you are not pushing yourself, you are not conditioning! Begin a conditioning program now – do not wait until the week before encampment to start working out! You will likely have to pass a simple test of your physical condition before in-processing.
Hydration is essential during encampment. The Air Force Academy is at 6700+ feet above sea level. Summers are warm and with the activity, you need a lot of water. Come to encampment hydrated. Start drinking water days before arriving.