The heiress to the Spanish throne, Princess Leonor, has begun her military training at the General Military Academy of Zaragoza, thus taking the first step towards one day becoming the captain-general of the Spanish Armed Forces.
Since her arrival two weeks ago, Leonor has been integrated with the rest of the nearly 200 cadets who entered the academy this year.
Like them, the princess has spent the first few days dedicated mainly to physical training and adapting to the military discipline and routines.
The heiress to the throne and her companions have already gone through the “Phase of Reception, Orientation, and Adaptation to Military Life”, now they are ready to begin the “Basic Military Training Module”.
Leonor, together with the rest of her classmates, goes jogging every morning for several kilometers around the academy grounds and has learned how to form up, how to salute her superiors, how to parade, and how to handle and shoot with a rifle.
Princess Leonor learns to use the HK G-36 rifle.
According to the official account of the Training and Doctrine Command in its X account (formerly called Twitter) Leonor and the rest of the cadets recently incorporated in the Academy of Zaragoza have begun to handle the HK G-36 rifle, a regulation weapon of the Spanish Army as a first step for their adaptation to the weapons.
Cadet Leonor has been able to handle it with her own hands, although it should be noted that the rifle magazines are empty.
New trainees usually begin their training by learning only the postures. The idea is to first get used to the weapon, its weight, and length so that, in a few weeks, when they have acquired more experience and fluency, they can start firing real fire.
Although at first, she handles the weapon unloaded to learn basic postures and techniques, in the coming months the princess will begin to practice shooting at the maneuvering field attached to the academy.
There she will have to demonstrate her marksmanship and mastery of the assault rifle, in sessions that are not without risk.
The Heckler & Koch G36 is an assault rifle designed by the German company Heckler & Koch in the 1990s as a replacement for the HK G3 rifle.
It is used by the German Army, the Spanish Armed Forces, the Lithuanian Army, and various special operations units of different countries.
This rifle fires the standard 5.56 x 45 NATO cartridge and has a maximum rate of fire of 750 rounds per minute. It can fire in semi-automatic or automatic mode thanks to a selector lever.
The G36 is a light weapon and can be configured as an assault rifle, compact carbine, carbine, or light machine gun.
Before entering the academy, Leonor completed her secondary education in Wales and then returned to Spain, where she prepared specifically to meet the demanding military training program.
Under the supervision of the Royal Household, the heir to the throne followed a plan to improve her physical condition and diet.
The goal was for her to arrive at the academy in top shape to be able to keep up with the pace of training and physical tests, which were very strenuous, especially during the initial phase.
Step by step to becoming an officer
After passing this first phase of adaptation to military life, Leonor will face three years of training to become an officer in the Spanish Army.
The program combines military subjects such as tactics and strategy with social sciences and engineering.
In addition to Zaragoza, the princess will attend the Naval School in Marín (Pontevedra) and the General Air Academy in San Javier (Murcia).
The aim is for her to gain in-depth knowledge of the three armies so that she will be fully qualified in the future to hold the position of captain general.
On completing her training, Leonor will become the first woman of the Royal Household to join the Spanish Armed Forces with the rank of officer.