Marching and staff drilling are the ultimate goals of learning drill commands but they all build off of the most basic commands and facing movements. It is these simple commands that lay the foundation for more complex formations and orders.
Attention - The position of attention includes:
- Standing up straight
- Arms at the side
- Heels together, toes apart
- Looking straight ahead
- Remaining quiet
Parade Rest - Is a relaxed stance typically only given while actually in a formation. To get to parade rest from attention:
- Step to the side with your left foot so your feet are now shoulder width apart. The right foot should not move at all but remained planted in place.
- Interlock your hands behind your back. The left hand is placed on your back and the right hand is placed in the palm of the left. The thumbs of the two open hands then interlock.
- Continue to look directly ahead and remain quiet.
Stand at Ease - Is the exact same stance as parade rest except it indicates that your head and eyes can follow whomever is speaking (thus typically used for speeches and addresses).
Close Intervals - Intervals can either be called in "Dress Right" or "Dress Left" which are the opposites of each other, the full command being "Close Intervals, Dress Right/Left, Dress." A scout will snap their head in the direction it is called and move the arm of the opposite direction (e.g. Dress Right means to look right and move your left arm). The hand of the arm in motion is placed on the hip so now the elbow is protruding. Scouts will adjust their spacing so everyone is an added elbow's length from each other. The order to cancel this command is "Ready Front" at which time everyone will drop their arm and look front.
Exceptions to this command involve the two men at either end of the line. The scout to the side the order was called (Dress Right = Right End) does not turn his head. He is the end and thus has no one to his side to line up with. The scout on the opposite side turns his head but does not extend his arm because there is no one on his other side to create an interval.
Extended Intervals - Is used when more space is required between each person. It is nearly identical to close intervals except that the entire arm is extended at shoulder height.
Counting Off - Is the alternative to simply commanding the formation to look front. It can be used simply to get a count of the Troop or it can be used for other purposes (e.g. counting off by twos to split the group in half). The order to count off simply creates a staggered release from the command. Starting from one end the formation will begin to count with each scout saying the appropriate number when it is his turn. He will say his number loudly and at that time he will look front and drop his arm. This will then ripple down the line until all scouts are back at attention.
Right Face - Simply involves turning 90 degrees to the right. It is a three step process.
- Plant the right heel and the left toe. The right toe and left heel should be free to move.
- Turn on these two points 90 degrees to the right (clockwise).
- Step forward with the left foot and place it beside the right now at the position of attention.
Left Face - Is the complete reverse of right facing.
- Plant the left heel and the right toe. The left toe and right heel should be free to move.
- Turn on these two points 90 degrees to the left (counterclockwise).
- Step forward with the right foot and place it beside the left now at the position of attention.
About Face - Is the easiest of the simple facing movements.
- Plant the right toe just behind and beside the left heel.
- Spin to the right (clockwise) on this heel and toe.
- Having turned 180 degrees both feet should be perfectly aligned at the scout will be back at attention only facing the opposite direction. There is no need to step and place the feet together if done properly.