What does the Drill Team Commander do?
Excellent question! Here is the answer:
Feeling a little Canadian? The team commander stands in one spot and calls commands. The only movements the commander makes is facing the team as they move around the drill area. This may seem strange to Americans, but it is understandable (judging the team as they are put through their paces) and quite interesting to watch.
However, this method doesn’t give the full picture that American drill competitions offer: seeing what the commander does as he/she and the team go through the routine- the commander must march with the team staying a certain number of paces from the team throughout the routine. I prefer this since it involves everyone on the team- and not just because I’m a Yank.
Here is where the answer to your question takes a couple of different avenues. In my first book, Exhibition Drill for the Military Drill Team, I included several different drill moves for teams made up of 9, 12 and 16 members (not including the commander). With each written description, I developed diagrams like this one below, to show my readers how to breakup each move.
Each move was divided up between ranks, squads/elements, As and Bs or different groups. Group[s are used in the move described above that is called, “Beta.” Also in each move description I had specific notes for what the commander. Here is an example: “Commander: follow movements for the As for 16 counts and then switch to following Bs.”
This guidance is if your team commander position is on the outside of the team; if the team commander marches in the block, no need to create anything different.
The choice is yours when it comes to exhibition drill (XD) and what the commander does. XD is supposed to give you free rein within certain limits (i.e. time, space and military flavor), it is not supposed to have arbitrary rules placed on it.
drill team training, drill team commander, exhibition drill, fancy drill, drill meet, drill competition, drill meet