US Army Combatives

2-06 Pit Construction

2-6. PIT CONSTRUCTION

The most common area for teaching hand-to-hand combat is a sawdust pit. Figure 2-1, shows a training area for 200 soldiers with a sawdust pit surrounding an instructor and demonstrator platform.

  • a. To construct the pit, dig out and level an area 50 meters wide and build a retaining wall at least 24 inches high. The wall can be cinder blocks, sandbags, or dirt if other materials are not available. To prevent injuries from a cinder block retaining wall, cover the wall and the top of the wall with sandbags. Place a layer of plastic sheeting on the ground to prevent the growth of grass and weeds, and place a sand base up to 12 inches deep on top of the plastic. Then, place a layer of sawdust at least 6 inches deep on top of the sand.
  • b. Build a 14-foot square demonstration area (Figure 2-1) in the center of the pit with the same type of retaining wall described in paragraph a. This area is large enough for two demonstrators and the primary instructor.

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