The Challenge In Challenge Coins

Challenge coins are being given out these days for merit, an upgrade in the ranking, acknowledgement of membership, and exclusivity.

There are people who hardly know what challenge coins stand for.:

Because most organizations these days give their participants challenge coins, they see these medallions only as tokens of appreciations or a thing of honour. That is not bad at all. However, challenge coins hold more sentimental value to the brave people of military than to a normal organization member who is just looking for acceptance and promotion.

Challenge coins do not equate to a huge monetary value. It’s not like the usual coin that you can buy or bid for a higher price. It might not seem as much as the regular coin but the history behind it is enough to consider these medallions priced possessions. During the war eras, these coins play an important role in the duty of a soldier.

They presented challenges that determine whether a soldier is diligently following orders of carrying the medallions all the time.

In the earlier days of the military, the challenge coins or the medallions serve as a badge of alliance and brotherhood among members of a unit. It was imperative then that a volunteer or a soldier must always carry his medallion with him in the event that a challenge came up.

Military Coin

The members were always subjected to a challenge that involved their military coins. There were no formal rules regarding the challenge and they always differ depending on the organization. The purpose of the challenge was to raise discipline and morale within a unit.

During that time, the challenge can happen at any moment on a table or in bar. The challenge starts as soon as the challenger, usually the lieutenant or an officer, draws his coin and smacks it flat on the table. Tapping the coin on a surface or dropping a coin may also signify a call for a challenge to everyone who is present in the area.

All the challenged soldiers must show their military coins for the officer or the challenger to see. Failure to produce his medallion means having to buy drinks for the challenger and the other participants who are able to produce coins. On the contrary, the challenger must buy everyone a round of drinks in the event that all challenged soldier are able to show their military coins.

There are rules in some organizations which allow a challenged person to pass off a coin to another challenged person if he has an extra coin. Everyone who is participating in the challenge must also buy a person a round of drinks should that person able to steal a challenge coin from another person.

There are some rules which require every participant of the challenge to buy a drink for the person who possesses the highest-ranking coin. These high-ranking coins are passed on by an official to a soldier during a handshake. Some challenges are timed and has stricter, although informal, rules.

A coin will only count as a challenge coin if it’s placed somewhere that is not always accessible to the coin holder like tiny pouches around the neck. If the challenge coin is placed on the belt or is worn as an accessory, then it can’t be considered a challenge coin. Rules of a challenge aren’t always the same in every unit. This is why complications occur when a person from another unit is challenged by a lieutenant from another unit.

Today, people who collect challenge coins practice the game in their own time. Whereas before, this challenge defines camaraderie and discipline in a unit, today they are considered a fun game where everyone can exercise attentiveness and discipline as well.