Drill on the March

Introduction

  1. Marching plays its part in drill as a means of working together; a Pathfinder group marching with precision is well disciplined and has high morale.
  2. A common cause of bad marching is the stepping of pace more than that taken by the shortest Pathfinder on parade.
  3. The unit or individual Pathfinder is to commence to march from the position of attention. If they are standing at ease when the command “Quick MARCH” or “ON-Parade” is given they will come to attention before stepping off. In all instances, they will step off with the left foot leading.

Cadence

  1. 120 Paces to the minute in quick time
  2. 60 Paces to the minute in slow time
  3. 180 Paces to the minute in double time

Lengths of Pace
The length of pace must be adjusted to suit the shortest Pathfinder.

Quick and slow time Juniors 60cm
Quick and slow time Teens 69cm
Quick and slow time Adults 76cm
Double time 76cm
Pace forward/ backwards 50cm
Side pace 30cm

On Which Foot Words of Commands are Given

The following commands are given on the foot as indicated:

Command Foot
Halt Right
Quick MARCH, Slow MARCH, or Double TIME Left
Mark TIME (when marching) Left
For-WARD Left
Right TURN Right
Change STEP Left
Eyes RIGHT, eyes FRONT Left
Change to quick TIME, Slow time, or Double TIME Left
About TURN Left
Left TURN Left

Quick March

“Pathfinders, quick MARCH.”

  1. The Pathfinders will step off with the left foot, swinging the right arm forward and the left arm to the rear, and march straight to the front unless otherwise directed.
  2. While marching:
    1. The heel must strike the ground first, the weight then coming forward over the ball of the foot moving leg passes the stationary leg.
    2. Every pace, including the first, will be 60 cm.
    3. Each leg must be swung forward naturally in a straight line.
    4. The arms must be swung freely and straight from the front to rear, reaching the extremity of their swing each time the heel comes to the ground.
    5. By locking the thumb over the second joint of the forefinger the arms and wrists will be kept straight and swung from the shoulder, hands reaching at least as high as the belt of the Pathfinder in front and as high as possible to the rear.
    6. The hand will be closed, but not clenched, thumbs leading.
    7. The shoulders will be held square to the front.

Common Faults

  1. Flipping the forearm or hands across the body, either to the front or the rear.
  2. Bending the left knee when stepping off, thus taking a pace of less than 60 cm.
  3. Taking a pace of more than 60 cm.
  4. Bending forward at the waist, particularly when stepping off, and dropping the shoulders.
  5. Not punching the arms to the rear.
  6. Swinging the arms with the back of the hands leading.

Changing Step on the March.

“Pathfinders, change STEP.”

In slow time;

  1. On the command, “change step”, given as the right foot is forward and on the ground:
    1. Complete a full pace with the left foot;
    2. Bring the right foot forward in quick time and place the instep of the right foot against the heel of the left foot; and
    3. Step off in slow time with the left foot.

In quick time,

  1. On the command, “change step”, given as the right foot is forward and on the ground complete a full pace with the left foot;
    1. Bring the right foot forward in double time and place the instep of the right foot against the heel of the left foot, bringing the arms to the sides; and
    2. Step off in quick time with the left foot, swinging the arms.

Halt

“Pathfinders, HALT.”

  1. The command will be given on the right foot.
  2. The Pathfinders will take a check pace of 60 cm with the left foot by striking the ground with the left heel.
  3. Complete the movement by bringing the right foot sharply to the left foot and snapping the arms to the sides, thus adopting the position of “attention”.

Common Faults

  1. Leaping off the ground
  2. Exaggerated upward swing with the right hand; bending the right forearm at the elbow.
  3. Little or no backward swing with the left hand.
  4. Scraping the left foot along the ground.
  5. Taking too short a pace with the left foot.
  6. Failing to adopt the position of “attention” on completion of the movement.

Wheeling to the Right

“Pathfinders, change direction right, right WHEEL.”

  1. The word of command may be given on either foot.
  2. When marching in two or three columns, the inner Pathfinder will wheel on the circumference of a circle with a radius of sixty (60) centimetres and will change direction through ninety (90) degrees.
  3. The spread of the wheel is governed by the ability of the outside Pathfinder to keep pace by stepping out.
  4. The Pathfinder on the inner flank will glance outwards from the corner of their eye and will vary their pace accordingly.
  5. Files in the rear will march straight to their front and will follow on the ground covered by the leading files.
  6. If it is desired to wheel through more than a right angle, the command “Right WHEEL” will be given a second time.
  7. If it is desired to wheel through less than a right angle (even after a second “Right WHEEL” has been ordered), the command “forWARD will be given when the leading section is facing the required direction. The squad will then march to their front.
  8. The arms will continue to swing through the entire wheel.

Common Faults

  1. When wheeling in twos and threes, failure of inner Pathfinders to adjust length of pace to allow the outer Pathfinders to maintain dressing.
  2. A marked tendency for covering files to swing outwards on approaching the wheeling point.
  3. Arms not swinging through the entire wheel.

Wheeling to the Left.

“Pathfinders, change direction left, left WHEEL.”

  1. The word of command may be given on either foot.
  2. When marching in two or three columns the inner Pathfinder will wheel on the circumference of a circle with a radius of 60 cm and will change direction through 90 degrees.  The spread of the wheel is governed by the ability of the outside Pathfinders to keep pace by stepping out.
  3. The Pathfinders on the inner flank will glance outwards from the corner of their eye and will vary the pace accordingly.
  4. Files in rear will march straight to their front and will follow on the ground covered by the leading files.
  5. If it is desired to wheel through more than a right angle, the command “Left WHEEL” will be given a second time.
  6. If it is desired to wheel through less than a right angle (even after a second “Left WHEEL” has been ordered), the command “for-WARD” will be given when the leading section is facing the required direction.  They will then lead straight on.
  7. The arms will continue to swing through the entire wheel.

Common Faults

  1. When wheeling in twos and threes, failure of inner Pathfinders to adjust length of pace to allow the outer Pathfinders to maintain dressing.
  2. A marked tendency for covering files to swing outwards on approaching the wheeling point.
  3. Arms not swinging through the entire wheel.

Marking Time from the Halt.

“Pathfinders, mark TIME.”

  • Marking time is carried out at the same cadence as for marching.
  • Only the legs are moved.
  • The upper portion of the body remains in the position of “attention”, arms at the side.

On the command, “Mark TIME”

  1. Bring the left foot forward and up and commence marking time.
  2. The knee is raised so that the upper part of the leg is 45 degrees to the ground with the foot at a natural angle.
  3. As the knee is lowered the toe is placed on the ground before the heel, and
  4. The club will continue to mark time until the command “forward” or “halt” is ordered.

Common Faults

  1. Gaining or losing ground, thus losing dressing.
  2. Swaying and general unsteadiness including flapping of the arms.
  3. Looking down.
  4. A tendency to lean forward.
  5. Kicking the heels towards the seat.
  6. Tendency to increase the cadence if continued for a prolonged period.

Moving Forward from Marking Time.

“Pathfinders, for-WARD.”

  1. Given as the left knee is being raised.
  2. Complete the beat with the left foot and make a further beat with the right foot.
  3. As the right foot comes to the ground move the left foot and right arm forward and the left arm to the rear and proceed in quick time.

Changing Step when Marking Time.

“Pathfinders, change STEP.”

  1. Given as the right foot is on the ground:
  2. Take two successive mark time paces with the left foot; and continue marking time.

Halting from Marking Time.

“Pathfinders, HALT.”

  1. Given as the left knee is being raised.
  2. Complete the movement of the left foot and halt by making a further beat with the right foot.

Mark Time on the March.

“Pathfinders, mark TIME.”

  1. Given on the left foot.
  2. Complete a 60 cm pace with the right foot and
  3. commence to mark time on the next beat of the left foot,
  4. cutting the arms to the sides as the left knee is being raised.

Left Turn in Quick Time.

“Pathfinders, turning on the march, left TURN.”

  1. The word of command is given on the left foot.
  2. Bring the right knee forward and upward; remain balanced on the left leg.
  3. Turn the right foot across the body, with the upper part of the leg horizontal, foot hanging at the natural angle, right knee in front of the left knee.  In this position, the right foot should be directly above the ground in front of the left toe.  The body and arms are to remain in the position of “attention”.
  4. By a vigorous straightening of the right knee, drive the right foot to the ground, with the instep just ahead of the left toecap.
  5. The instant the right foot strikes the ground, move the left foot out in the new direction and continue marching.
  6. The arms are snapped to the side at the commencement of the first movement of the turn, that is, when the right knee is being raised in the left turn.
  7. The arms commence to swing as the left foot is moved forward in the new direction.

Common Faults

  1. Allowing the arms to move away from the sides during the turn.
  2. Not stepping forward in the new direction the full distance.
  3. Bending forward when stepping off in the new direction.
  4. Trying to move the stationary foot, before the moving foot strikes the ground, giving the impression of a “skip”.
  5. Coordination between arms and legs tends to become lost.
  6. There is a marked tendency toward not raising the knee high enough, thus racing the movement.

Right Turn in Quick Time.

“Pathfinders, turning on the march, right TURN.”

  1. The word of command is given on the right foot.
  2. Bring the left knee forward and upward; remain balanced on the right leg.
  3. Turn the left foot across the body, with the upper part of the leg horizontal, foot hanging at the natural angle, left knee in front of the right knee.  In this position, the left foot should be directly above the ground in front of the right toe.  The body and arms are to remain in the position of “attention”.
  4. By a vigorous straightening of the left knee, drive the left foot to the ground, with the instep just ahead of the right toecap.
  5. The instant the left foot strikes the ground, move the right foot out in the new direction and continue marching.
  6. The arms are snapped to the side at the commencement of the first movement of the turn, that is, when the left knee is being raised in the right turn.
  7. The arms commence to swing as the right foot is moved forward in the new direction.

Common Faults

  1. Allowing the arms to move away from the sides during the turn.
  2. Not stepping forward in the new direction the full distance.
  3. Bending forward when stepping off in the new direction.
  4. Trying to move the stationary foot, before the moving foot strikes the ground, giving the impression of a “skip”.
  5. Coordination between arms and legs tends to become lost.
  6. There is a marked tendency toward not raising the knee high enough, thus racing the movement.

 

About Turn in Quick Time.

“Pathfinders, turning on the march, about TURN.”

  1. The word of command is given as the left foot reaches the ground.
  2. Take another pace with the right foot to check forward momentum.  At the same time cut the arms to the sides.
  3. Raise left foot, turn body through 90 degrees to the right and place the left foot down with the instep in front of the toe on the right foot.
  4. Raise the right foot, turn the body through the further 90 degrees and place the right foot down, toe pointing in the new direction.
  5. Raise the left foot and place alongside the right foot.
  6. Commence to swing the arms as the right foot leads off in the new direction.
  7. In ‘b’ to ‘e’ above the foot is raised 21 cm from the ground.

Common Faults

  1. Allowing the arms to move away from the sides during the turn.
  2. Not stepping forward in the new direction the full distance.
  3. Bending forward when stepping off in the new direction.
  4. Trying to move the stationary foot, before the moving foot strikes the ground, giving the impression of a “skip”.
  5. Coordination between arms and legs tends to become lost.
  6. There is a marked tendency toward not raising the knee high enough, thus racing the movement.

Double Time Marching

“Pathfinder, double MARCH.”

  1. Step off with the left foot and run on the balls of the feet with easy swinging strides, inclining the body slightly forward, but maintaining correct carriage.
  2. The feet must be picked up cleanly from the ground at each pace, and the thigh, knee and ankle joints must all work freely.
  3. The heels should not be raised toward the seat, but the foot carried straight to the front and the ball of the foot placed lightly on the ground.
  4. The arms should be swung as in quick time except that they should be bent so that the forearm forms an angle of about 135 degrees with the upper arm.
  5. The length of the pace will be increased and the rate of marching will be 180 paces to the minute.

Common Faults

  1. Swinging the shoulders.
  2. Looking down.
  3. Stepping too long at the head of the unit, thus causing straggling in the rear and dressing harder to maintain.

Halting from Marching in Double Time.

“Pathfinders, HALT.”

  1. Break into quick time before ordering “halt”.
  2. The order is given on the left foot.
  3. Take a further check pace with the right foot.
  4. Bring the left foot sharply to the right foot and the arms to the side.

Slow March

All commands to commence slow marching are ordered when the Pathfinders are at the position of “attention”.

“Pathfinders, slow MARCH.”

  1. Maintain the body erect and the arms steady at the sides;
  2. Step off smoothly with the left foot, straightening the knee, with the toe 5 cm from the ground, pointing downward;
  3. Raise the right heel off the ground and, with a gliding motion, complete the 50 cm pace, the forward part of the left foot coming to the ground.
  4. Bring each foot forward, straight to the front, pointing the toe forward and downward, and continue as detailed in ‘b’ and ‘c’; and
  5. Retain the dressing by the directing flank.
  6. On the command, “Pathfinders, HALT, given as the right foot is forward and on the ground:
    • Complete a full forward pace with the left foot in slow time; and
    • Bring the right foot forward, in quick time, and assume the position of “attention”.
  7. The slow march is taught by having the club:
    • March along at the rate of 60 paces to the minute;
    • With the toe pointing down, making sure consecutive movements of the feet are smooth and without hesitation.
    • The Pathfinders clasp the hands behind the back with the head looking down.

Carrying Articles

  1. If an article is carried; it must be carried in the left hand.
  2. When marching, the left arm is kept by the side and the right arm only swings in the normal manner.
  3. When carrying articles, to adopt the position of
    1. “Attention”, the arms remain at the side.
    2. “Stand at ease”, the left arms remain at the sides and the feet 20-30 cm apart.
    3. “Stand easy”, the arms remain at the sides.