Drill and ceremony are a way of showing pride in the military. They also help build teamwork and teach Soldiers discipline. Military drill was first introduced by German officer Baron Friedrich von Steuben to the Continental Army at Valley Forge during the American Revolution. There are many different types of military drill movements and positions. Knowing them is important because it instills instant obedience to commands and helps create unit cohesion.
What is the Purpose of Drill and Ceremony?
The purpose of drill is to teach soldiers how to perform specific movements in order to form a coordinated group. This is necessary for military operations because it allows a group to move together without getting lost or losing momentum. It also helps to instill a sense of discipline and unity in the group. Drill also teaches soldiers how to obey orders quickly and accurately.
There are three methods of teaching drill: step-by-step, talk-through, and by-the-numbers. The method used will depend on the character of the movement being taught. For example, marching movements are best taught using the step-by-step method, while stationary movements can be taught using either the talk-through or by-the-numbers method.
When learning drill, instructors often use a competitive spirit to encourage and motivate the soldiers. This is especially important when the training is for an important event, such as a parade or ceremony. For example, when conducting a ceremony for a new company commander, the instructor will often have the soldiers compete against each other to see who can complete the command sequences correctly.
The Army’s drill and ceremony began in 1778, when Baron Friedrich von Steuben taught a model company musket drill while the Continental Army spent the winter at Valley Forge, Pennsylvania. The techniques he introduced to the American Army remain in use today.
How Many Steps Are in Drill and Ceremony?
Drill is a series of movements and positions used to form units. It is executed from the position of attention and is conducted at marching cadence. Drill is typically performed by soldiers in uniform and is used to reinforce the military culture of discipline and esprit de corps. In addition, drill is often used to prepare for large military parades. These are typically held to mark important events such as a country’s independence day or during major world events.
There are several different commands that may be used during unit drill. These include marching in place, route step march, and at ease march. Each of these requires a specific set of steps and procedures. Marching in place involves stepping forward with the left foot and bringing it alongside the right. Then, the command “Mark Time” is given and marching begins. The arms are then moved smartly down and back to the sides.
To rest, the commander can give the command of Parade rest or Stand easy (United States: at ease). The former has the Soldiers relax their upper bodies while keeping their hands clasped behind their backs and the latter has the Soldiers raise their arms shoulder high with fingers extended and joined, pointing towards the right of the person in front to maintain correct spacing. The commander can also command “Open Ranks, MARCH” or “Close Ranks, MARCH”. These are used to open or close the above described gap between ranks and are required during inspections.
Military Drill Parade and Ceremony Commands
In modern parades, military drill commands are used to control the movement of a formation while marching. These are given in the form of verbal instructions from the adjutant or commander of the troops. Some of these commands include: Right incline, march; eyes forward/right; left incline, march; and about turn. These are all used to change the direction of the marching formation, and they are done by rotating the foot in the correct direction on each step.
Eyes Forward/Right is an order that instructs the entire formation to look forward simultaneously. This is done to keep the flight, squadron, or platoon in its proper alignment. It can also be used to signal a command to the head marker to lower their arms. The command is followed by the phrase katse eteen/oikeaan-PAIN (eyes-FRONT).
The command Eyes left is similar to eyes right, except that it tells the formation to look to the left. It is also used to indicate a command to lower the arms at a halt. The command About turn is a command to turn 180 degrees from the original direction of marching. It is given as the heel of the foot in the direction of the turn strikes the ground. The commands Slow Time, MARCH and Mark Time, HALT are a way of maintaining the pace in large parades when the entire formation is not moving forward.