Marines to enforce weight standards

| January 6, 2013

UT San Diego reports that for some reason the Marine Corps has decided that they need to enforce weight standards. Of course, folks like the Orcan American pictured above got all fat on the day that General James Amos took command of the Corps.

The trim top officer of the Corps ordered his inspector general to conduct surprise weigh-ins in 2011.

Failure to meet weight standards has always been a barrier to promotion and potential career-ender. Now, the stakes for battling the bulge are higher because competition to remain in uniform is increasing as the military downsizes.

But the crackdown on body fat seems to be helping more Marines maintain fighting form.

The Army dismissed more than 1,600 soldiers last year for failing to meet weight standards. The Navy kicked out 1,374 in fiscal 2012, up from 760 in 2011.

The Marine Corps, the smallest of the armed forces, discharged 132 for weight-control problems in fiscal 2012. In 2011, it was 186, nearly double the previous year.

The Duffel Blog has a huge-ass Marine that they stalk and post pictures on Facebook, so yes, there is probably a problem, but they should have been doing something about it all of this time. I’m sure the guy pictured above didn’t get that way during deployments.

Category: Marine Corps

Comments (39)

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  1. Sig says:

    Maybe the colors are off, but the guys in that photo look Army to me. We had one that big with us overseas in 2006. By all accounts he was a REALLY good mechanic, but yikes, glad he never had to go anywhere.

  2. MAJMike says:

    He’s big boned.

    Maybe he’s on the weight control program and is making “satisfactory progress.

    Maybe he tapes out okay and meets body mass index standards.

  3. Rerun0369 says:

    Thats a Guardsman in the picture,not a Marine. Not to say that we don’t have our own fat bodies.

  4. karlen says:

    I don’t know what you mean by just now enforcing weight standards as the entire time I was in, 2008-2012, it was enforced. This is obviously going to be different at each command, but every unit I was around, if you were on/close to your max weight, you were getting BCP paperwork.

    Nice choice in the fat soldier picture though. Is this a duffel blog article?

  5. Jonn Lilyea says:

    OK, I changed the picture.

  6. karlen says:

    Photo has been changed.

  7. Joe Williams says:

    No way that guy is a Marine. He would been in the fat boy platoon in boot.The recuiter who singed should be lighten of two ot more stripes.

  8. Rerun0369 says:

    Unfortunately,that is a Marine,I have seen him around CLNC. Not for a while though, maybe he finally got adsepped?

  9. 2-17 Air Cav says:

    Chief Petty Lance Corporal Specialist Zeppelin is putting a hurtin’ on those boots.

  10. Green Thumb says:

    That is a fat marine.


  11. JHC says:


  12. Green Thumb says:


    I need to be politically correct.


  13. NSOM says:

    Weight standards were always enforced when I was in. They’re looking to get rid of people, especially mediocre Marines, so this seems to be aimed at popping all those chronically borderline guys who play the weigh in game. Still passing PFTs and all that and not obese or anything but nobody you’d want on a recruiting poster either.

    I suspect the Marines have so may fewer discharges for weight standards because they have fewer fat bodies to start with and if you’re over weight there’s an NCOs who’s taking you outside and brutalizing you five days a week. If you’re still fat by next weight in it’s because you’re trying to eat your way out of the Marines Corps. Or you’re a female.

  14. NR Pax says:

    Good grief. I’m betting that the picture on his CAC says “Continued on other side.”

  15. Reaperman says:

    Holy hell, I’ve never seen anything like that pic before. He’s even (considerably) bigger than my fat rear, and at least I earned the privilege of rolls by having the decency to get out first. Is that some kind of disability medhold thing going on there?

  16. Tango9 says:

    Holy Case of MRE’s, Batman! That dude ate his platoon!

  17. USMCE8Ret says:

    That fella is certainly overweight, and should be/haven been separated in short order. Not to defend the photo, but it could also be a Navy Corpsman assigned to a FMF unit (since they wear the MARPAT and all). There’s no telling who that guy really is, but I agree that the Corps should strictly enforce the regulations.

  18. O-4E says:

    That isn’t a man…that is one of those inflatable costumes they use at Recruting this:

  19. Ben says:

    It’s about damned time!

    My experience is that enforcement varies depending on what kind of unit you’re in. I’ve been in infantry units and pogue units and they are quite different animals.

  20. Hondo says:

    Obviously, it’s policy – and until that policy is changed, it has to be both followed and enforced.

    But could someone tell me what an across-the-board arbitrary set of height/weight standards does to improve military readiness? Couldn’t that same aim be accomplished better by no-shit physical testing (as opposed to “pencil-whipping”) coupled with well-designed MOS-specific physical standards? I’ve been wrestling with that question for 30+ years and have yet to think of or hear an answer I thought was worth a damn.

    And please don’t even bring up “thin looks better in uniform”. Looking nice doesn’t equate to “performs duties well”.

  21. Just an Old Dog says:

    The height and weight standards have always been a cluster-fugg. The orders were pretty black ans white but were spottily enforced depending on the unit. I saw the same story over and over again in my time. A kid that was a sea bag with lips and 30 pounds over the standards gets a waiver to get in so the recruiter can make standards. He is starved, thrashed perhaps sent to PCP in order to meet weight standards and pass the PFT. He graduates boot camp and without the constant control of his diet and supervision he packs back on 30 pounds within 6-9 months. If he belongs to some small maintanence or admin shop that have an individual PT program and the leadership only sees the Marine once a month he can blow way up.
    The real solution is to have a stringent and frequent administration of PFTs, say Bi- Monthly, and throw the weight standards out the window. If a Service member can pass a PFT every 8 weeks don’t worry about what the fugg he looks like in a pair of charlies. All the slugs in the picture above will probably get tossed out on the fat kiesters, but the days of 300 or high first class pfter’s who are built like cement blocks or have love handles being messed with by pencil neck geeks that can barely pass a pft will be over. The Armed Forces are meant to kill people, nor serve as a modeling agency for Calvin Klien.

  22. 2-17 Air Cav says:

    A fat slob who can pass a PT test is still a fat slob. Doesn’t look good. Doesn’t look right. That’s all.

  23. USMCE8Ret says:

    @21 – I’ve known some obsese Marines who could PT fairly well, and merely PASS the PFT – say with a 3d class, sometimes better. I’ve also known some fat-bodies who surprisingly had some speed and upper body strength and would routinely crank out a 1st class PFT, but they looked like crap in uniform overall. Then there were others who were weight lifters, low body fat, would crush the PFT, and looked good in uniform, but didn’t tape so well.

    While we would agree there need to be consistent standards, I think the Corps needs to re-think it’s current measures, as tape isn’t to fair to some folks.

    Just an observation.

  24. Lobster says:

    If you can pass a PT test and do your job well, it should be good enough. Being a PT stud does not equal good leadership skills or job skills. Unfortunately, the Army doesn’t realize that.

  25. Yat Yas 1833 says:

    IF this is indeed a Marine, I renounce all my rights to the title. While in, I was designated a “fat body” by weighing 185#, when for my height I should have weighed #183!?!? Forget the fact I was a first class PFT every time we had to do it. Forget the fact I got a waiver to get my blouse tailored because my chest was 44″ but my wait was 36″-!!! something ain’t right!

  26. Kid says:

    Wouldn’t a maximum size for uniforms take care of it?

  27. CWO5USMC says:

    I bet he’s a fleet corpsman…. ๐Ÿ™‚

    Marines aren’t the only ones who wear the uniform….maybe a contractor wearing knock off MARPATS??

    Just saying….

  28. Green Thumb says:

    It looks like a maternity uniform.

  29. Green Thumb says:

    Just missing the soft shoes.

  30. SFC Holland says:

    I came for the article, but stayed for the comments. Thanks for the laughs guys. I am in the WTU right now, home of some of the largest soldiers on the planet.

  31. John says:

    A jelly donut, You are a discusting fat body Pyle

  32. Reaperman says:

    Maybe he had a bunch of IRR time left when he got out and they caught him on a physical muster years later. That’s the best I can do as far as the question of ‘just, freaking how?’

  33. O-4E says:

    @32…could very well be the case

    Back in 07 I went to Jackson for a Recruiting Officer Course. Arrived at the airport and was waiting for the bus to Jackson. Sparked up a conversation with a guy who was about 300 pounds with a crumpled duffel bag about 1/4 of the way full sitting beside him.

    He was about 6 months shy of his IRR time ending and got called back. He told them on the phone how fat he was and they told him to report anyways. Always wondered what happened to that guy.

  34. USMCE8Ret says:

    @33 – I’ve often wondered the same, though I think the day of activating IRR members is likely over. (I could be wrong, as I’ve been out of the loop for a few months now.)

  35. Brian says:

    Just an Old Dog and USMCE8Ret,
    Both of you are correct, the current height and weight standards and the current system of “taping” for body fat are a joke. The height/weight measurements are woefully outdated and there is absolutely no consistency in the process of taping someone who is over their max weight. When it comes to taping someone, if the Marine in the S-3 likes you, you’ll be under, and if he doesn’t, he can make sure you’re not.

    The Marine Corps also just announced that all non-deployed Marines, active and reserve, will wear the seasonal service uniform every Friday. The stated purpose is that the form fitting uniforms will “provide leaders with an opportunity to frequently evaluate the personal appearance of their Marines without inducing a work stoppage.” Morale is about to hit an all-time high….

  36. I don’t know what the regs are now, but when I was Active Duty Marines (97-02) we had “military appearance” standards as well as fitness standards. Basically it meant that even if you could pass the PFT, if you looked like a Shit Sandwich in uniform, you got sent to remedial PT until your waistline improved.

  37. Oh Hell says:

    For my 2 cents…I raise livestock and we have a saying “The eye of the Master fattens the beast…” Not to compare people to livestock but you have to LOOK at every one of them. To fat? To thin? How tall are they, what is the bone structure, how hard are they working? What are they supposed to DO?
    One standard does NOT fit all. Just measuring and weighing someone and declaring them unfit won’t work and the morons who instituted that policy need to rethink it. Sure you need a uniform standard, but some common sense wouldn’t hurt either.

  38. william w smith says:

    Is that not, Karl Sander(04) US Navy and yes he tapes out.

  39. Angry American says:

    Angers me that the tape test has been proven not accurate and out dated. The caliper test is much more accurate as well as the dunk test. Seems like they are just making room for the soliders coming home. I respect everyone of them for there service, but when good soliders ( Marines) are being booted because they are so called fat is a disrespect and dishonor to them. To me the MARINES has failed the soliders, the soldiers have not failed the MARINES. The only regs they have changed that I have seen is the change on how much body fat OLDER MARINES can carry. If you wanna make it one test fits all then do it, with all ages falling under the same weight tape test and body fat percent. What these men and women go thru to earn the title of Marine is gruesome and then to be booted for failing what has been proven to be an out dated and very inaccurate test is a dishonor to the name MARINE and these young soliders.