Thinking “Outside of the Box”

DrillMasterCommentary, Drill Teams, Instructional Leave a Comment

When I was about 10 years old I want to the skateboard (similar shape to the one pictured- thanks to This was around 1975 and skateboards were starting to become more popular – ever kid seemed to have one. Some of the more popular skateboards, at least initially, were plastic and that’s what I wanted. My dad however, thought that it would be good to get a skateboard made of wood and in hindsight that would’ve been perfect. Never mind the fact that I never really mastered the skateboard, but it was still fun. Shortly after receiving my plastic skateboard I regretted having it. But there was no going back. I was stuck in my shortsighted thinking; I was stuck in my box.

There are some Drillers and teams who want to do what Driller A or Team B does because it looks good. In the visual performance arena copying is a form of flattery, but outright taking a particular trick or move and trying to execute it the exact same way, does not usually communicate flattery, it communicates a lack of education, training and creativity. Some might even say “desperation.” I don’t know if I would go that far. Some performances just stick out in your mind as having some of the best moments in them. And others want to emulate certain performers or teens. While there is nothing wrong with that, taking a trick or movement that someone else created and performed and injecting your own style into it is the best way to go.

It takes time to develop style. It takes time to develop a look. For those Drillers or teams just starting out this is a time to get to know what you can do and how well you can do it. It’s also a time to educate yourself or your team and train to the best of your abilities. By educating yourself you’re going to be able to follow your own path and begin that “outside of the box” thinking. And this is what you want, this is also what the military drill world desperately needs.

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