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How Far is a Click in Military Terms: Military Benefits and Practices

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As a civilian, are you wondering how far is a click in military terms? You might have heard the term “click” randomly expressed in conversations between military men, either in movies or in real-life events. The military often uses language that isn’t familiar to civilians, klick is one of these words that most civilians aren’t acquainted with. Klick is part of a military metric system that dates back to World War.

How Far is a Click in Military Terms

In today’s guide, you’re going to learn what a click is, its origins, how far a click is in military terms, and how it is used in our day to day lives.

What Is A Click In Military Terms?

Military slang can be very confusing to newly recruited soldiers or civilians. And if you are in this position, you may wonder “what is a click.”

The term click is commonly known to be a slang used in the military to describe distance. Now, you might be wondering how far a click is. According to the metric system, which is an international standard of measurement, a click is a kilometer, which is equal to 0.621371 miles.

Active military men and retired ones will often describe distance in terms of “clicks.” Sometimes, a click is spelled as “Clic”, or “Klik”.

Among members of the military in active service, the term “klick” is a standard measure of walking distances. If a soldier says “we’re 24 klicks south of your position,” that means they are 24 kilometers away, or approximately 14.9 miles away.

Another example is when a soldier passes Intel to another soldier over a communication device, and he says “we are 35 clicks north within your radius.” What he means is that he is 24 kilometers north of the other soldiers’ location.

So, therefore, one-click is equal to one kilometer.

Origins of the Word Click (How Far is a Click in Military Terms)

The word is said to have unknown origins but was popularly used in the 1960s during the Vietnam war.

According to some military historians, the term “click came into existence in Vietnam amongst the Australian Infantry.

According to them, the infantry’s’ military men would measure distance by pacing with strides and maneuver by bearing (compass direction).

In order to take records of distance covered, it would be the assigned duty of one or two shoulders to count their steps as they move.

And about 110 paces on plain grounds, 100 paces down a sloping terrain and 120 paces up a sloping ground equals 100 meters. The soldiers charged with the duty of counting would keep track of each 100 paces and record it as 1mark.

After pacing 10 marks, the soldier charged with the duty of counting would give a signal to the commander in charge and using hand signals that they have moved 10 marks which is equal to 1000 meters.

Then the commander in charge will indicate movement of 1000 meters by lifting the rifle and rewinding the gas regulator of his rifle which will make an audible clicking sound.

This clicking sound sends the information to the other soldiers in the unit that they have moved 1000 meters, which is equal to a kilometer.

And that is how the clicking sound made by the rifle was introduced into the military’s vocabulary as a “click” to describe a kilometer.

How Far Is A Click In Military Terms?

If you are able to guess that a click describes the distance from the conversations amongst military men as a civilian, you may still wonder how far a click is.

If you have been reading from above, I bet you already know that a click is a kilometre in military terms.

The military now uses the MGRS to map points on Earth in meters, but used walking distance which was measured in “clicks”.

Communication between ground force soldiers will include the use of the term “click”. For example, a soldier could say that they are “five clicks North of your position” and use that as reference for location and distance.

The term “click” can also be used when zeroing in or sighting-in on a target with a gun of a target rifle. One actual click of a soldier’s gun is equal to one minute of arc, or one inch of distance at 100 yards away.

This means that the impact of the bullets will change by 1 inch if the sights of the gun or rifle are adjusted by one click for a target that is 100 meters away, 2 inches for a target that is 200 meters away and so on.

The Use Of Click In Our Everyday Lives

From the time of its supposed origin, the term click has become a generally accepted vocabulary in the military. It is used to pass commands and Intel from one soldier to another.

However, the term “click” is also used as a general slang in our everyday vocabulary, due to how often military men use the term when they are not on duty or when they are retired.

And due to socialization with these military men, the slang is passed from person to person, making it an everyday slang.

Basic military distance measurements (How Far is a Click in Military Terms)

The below are few common types of distance measurements used in various branches of the military:

  • Velocity: Velocity is a term used to describe the speed of a projectile, such as a pellet, bullet or slug, in relation to the muzzle at the time it leaves the end of the barrel of the gun. The Army most times uses this form of measurement to define the abilities of different types of weapons. 
  • Longitude: Longitude is a term used to describe vertical lines that connect at the North and South poles of the world. The longitude of a location represents the location at an angle that runs between the north and south through the Prime Meridian and a vertical point.
  • Latitude: Latitude refers to the horizontal lines that run parallel to the Equator. Latitudes are represented in degrees, and each degree is around 69 miles.
  • Furlong: A furlong represents .125 of a mile or 220 yards.
  • Nautical miles: A nautical mile is a distance measurement used during space, air and marine navigation and when defining territorial waters. One nautical mile is equal to 1.852 kilometers or 1,852 meters on the circumference of the earth.
  • Knots: A knot is a distance measurement used in aviation and nautical military branches that defines a unit of speed equal to one nautical mile per hour, or 1.852 kilometers per mile.
  • Kiloyard: A kiloyard is a unit of length that is equal to 1,000 yards or 914.4 meters. This measurement is rarely used, but some military branches still refer to 1,000 yards as a kiloyard.
  • Rod: A rod is an old English measurement sometimes used in the military to denote a distance equal to 16.5 feet or 5.5 years.

Tabular Representation of “How far is a Click/Klick“ (How Far is a Click in Military Terms)

1 Click 0.62 Mile 1000 Meters 3280.83 feet
2 Click 1.24 miles 2000 Meters 6561.68 feet
3 Click 1.86 miles 3000 Meters 9842.52 feet
4 Click 2.49 miles 4000 Meters 13123.36 feet
5 Click 3.11 miles 5000 Meters 16404.20 feet
6 Click 3.73 miles 6000 Meters 19685.04 feet
7 Click 4.35 miles 7000 Meters 22965.88 Feet
8 Click 4.97 miles 8000 Meters 26246.72 Feet
9 Click 5.59 miles 9000 Meters 29527.56 Feet
10 Clicks 6.21 miles 10000 Meters 32808.39 Feet
11 Clicks 6.82 miles 11000 Meters 36089.24 Feet
12 Clicks 7.44 miles 12000 Meters 39370.0 Feet
15 clicks 9.30 miles 15000 Meters 49212.59 Feet
20 clicks 12.43 miles 20000 Meters 65616.79 Feet
25 clicks 15.53 miles 25000 Meters 82020.99 Feet
30 clicks 18.64 miles 30000 Meters 98425.19 Feet
50 clicks 31.07 miles 50000 Meters 164041.99 Feet
100 clicks 62.14 miles 100000 Meters 328083.99 Feet
500 clicks 310.69 miles 500000 Meters 1640419.95 Feet
1000 clicks 621.37 miles 1000000 Meters 3280839.89 Feet
5000 clicks 3106.86 miles 5000000 Meters 16404199.47 Feet

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