How the Navy SEALs Work

By: Lee Ann Obringer & Francisco Guzman  | 
SEALs training BUD/S
U.S. Navy SEAL candidates participate in Basic Underwater Demolition/SEAL (BUD/S) training. SEALs are the maritime special operations force and are trained to conduct a variety of operations from the sea, air and land. U.S. Navy photo by Mass Communication Specialist 1st Class Abe McNatt/Released

Any place where there are currently U.S. troops, you'll find that SEALs are either there now or were there first. The role that Navy SEAL teams play revolves around getting in and out quickly and without being seen, gathering intelligence, destroying targets and performing rescues, among other things.

U.S. special operations forces, which includes elite commando forces from each branch of the military, such as the Navy SEALs, Army Rangers, Green Berets and others have become critical to many U.S. military successes over the past decade. Each branch of the military has its own specially trained teams that can operate in any situation and perform whatever task it takes to get the job done.


What does it take to become a Navy SEAL? Even SEAL instructors can't predict who will make it all the way. The common trait instructors see in future SEALs can't really be defined; they just call it "fire in the gut." You either have it or you don't.

In this article, you'll see how Navy SEALs operate and what they do, the amazing determination it takes to become a SEAL, the widely varied skills they need and the types of equipment they use on missions.