SOF personnel are required to infiltrate and exfiltrate to and from operational areas dismounted, carrying heavy loads and manipulating personal and support weapons systems and other heavy equipment. SOF personnel perform insertions and assaults on targets by:
- Parachuting onto ground or into water;
- Climbing ladders and cliffs;
- Conducting close-quarters battle (CQB); and
- Battle drills in varying types of terrain and climatic conditions day or night.
SOF personnel are also required to board ocean vessels while they are underway from another floating or airborne platform in all sea states day or night, and where speed and stealth are imperative. These duties are performed while wearing heavy rucksack and body armour. SOF personnel perform individual close quarter battle (CQB) and detainee handling which may require the individual to:
- Combat and detain another person using blocking strikes;
- Ground fighting;
- Grappling; and
- Moving a non-compliant person.
There is no tolerance for a lapse in attention when conducting CQB and other assaults while wearing night vision goggles as well as Special Operations Insertion and Extraction (SOIE) techniques. Accurate discrimination of non-combatants and precision engagement of enemy combatants requires extreme concentration.
Similarly, high-risk roped and un-roped insertions with no redundant safety systems require constant attention. SOF personnel require the ability for continuous analysis of the situation, environment, mission aims and unique foreign societal complexities during operations.