Suggested Sports Field Entrance and Exit

DrillMaster Ask DrillMaster, Color Guard/Color Team, Honor Guard, Honor Guard Training, Instructional Leave a Comment

I just finished a critique for a first responder color guard colors presentation which gave me an idea to write this article. Also see the How to Present the Colors at an Event article here. This one will go a little more in depth.

Instead of a four-step interval, I suggest that the team enters with shoulders touching so that you present a unified formation, able to navigate through the field.

As you approach where you need to stop to present the colors, the team can begin to separate, the commander- American flag bearer, can say, “Split”, wait four or even six steps as the team evenly spreads out, and then call, “Mark Time” and finally, “Halt”.

The other option to this is to separate automatically on the Mark Time command and wait for Halt. I think this technique may serve you better.

Going From Third Base

If the team enters from the third base line, marching in a single file column formation and using the Every Left On technique, would be perfect.

The image on the left shows Every Left On. You can see how the team progresses from a column formation entering from stage left into a line formation for the colors presentation. There is a very unique way to accomplish this with a standard four-inch spacing, but it can very well be adapted for a 2-, 4-, or even 6-step spacing.


Once the team stops, giving Present Arms, would be a good idea, instead of waiting for the first note. That way, the Anthem can begin on the visual signal of the color team going to Present.

If you are a trained and certified Ceremonial Guardsman, remember, you are the ceremonial expert everywhere you go, you are the one to tell the hosting organization what you do, how you do it, and when.


I also suggest that, when leaving, you could give the command, “Port, Arms”, which brings the colors down to your side (you have finished your job and are no longer the focus), turn to your left with a Colors Turn-off command, and depart.

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