Why can't officers teach drill?

Given the shortage of DI’s, why can’t former DI’s that have gone commission teach drill? Its not like they forgot it all when they transferred to the “Dark Side” :joy:

They can, aslong as they teach it properly


absolutlely no reason why they can’t teach drill if there is no one “more current and qualified” to teach it.

I was teaching drill the other week, and I’ve been commissioned 1.5 years, CI for 6 before that and remembering back to my CWO days.

(whats properly? :laughing: Sorry @AlexCorbin)


Nothing would stop me, except someone being better at it than me and available :woman_shrugging:


I teach it properly…

…its just that its Officers drill


I think the bigger question is can ex Arms DIs who have commissioned teach rifle and / or sword drill…


Sure, why not? Just why? Do you have the kit knocking about?

The only thing we officers can’t do is carry the large set of compasses. But seeing as the compasses are just for pointing at things, I make do with a black plain handled umbrella.


And so a new thread begins…

The pace stick is a teaching tool! :grin: Mine spent more time open, for its proper use than closed.


You’re doing it wrong, clearly.

Same, it sees the light of day when it’s being used as an instructional tool…

On the topic of instructional tools, I see no reason why a competent Officer type could not teach some drill, I agree with @AlexCorbin thought that ideally they teach it properly, referring to 818 and using the DLS (drill lesson structure)

Officers drill is very nuanced… remembering exactly how and when to shuffle on to parade and when to shuffle off again - it’s not as easy as it looks :grimacing::flushed::smile:

The notion that officers’ drill can be of a poor standard I find unacceptable! If they can’t do the drill they need to go on a refresher. Doesn’t set a good example etc.

I know some here are being sarcastic but many people out there genuinely think its ok for their drill standard to be poor.

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You joke. I recall a parade in Bath, 9 flights, 3 squadrons of 3. The DIs told the officers which flight we all had, but not which was which. We didn’t know if the squadrons were in rows or columns, so march on the officers looked great until we all had to march around the parade trying to find our flights.


Hey, that sounds like poor comms skills from the DI’s, not poor drill from the officers :laughing:

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The look on the Officers’ faces when the DIs told us they would start to form the whole wing up 11 minutes before departure time was quite amusing. Eyebrows into our peaks.

March off was about 30 minutes late, and we’d all been waiting around for hours.

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DIs need to plan for either:

  1. Plan timings to allow for the inevitable cluster and get the job done as quickly and painlessly as possible
  2. Annoy the hell out of everyone by insisting everyone turns up 6 hours before for rehearsals that basically involves the cadets standing around for hours watching the staff make a cluster of it…
    … and then go to point 1

If we didn’t have to bus the cadets ourselves the staff could turn up to rehearse and the cadets could turn up to do…

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There is an exact sequence for deploying one’s deckchair too.


In fairness officers are always told that it isn’t in our remit and we don’t really go about teaching it…

Is there any wonder that the standard, in some instances, is poor?

I was a cadet, and found it like riding a bike… putting a uniform on 10 years since leaving it came flooding back, apart from a new slightly bizarre and stompy about turn…

But a fantastic squadron officer commissioned at the same time as me, and not an ex cadet, struggled with it, and so just avoids it. They are an exemplary officer in every aspect, but drill is alien to them.

I don’t mind wearing a set of No1 and marching up and down, I enjoyed it as a cadet and enjoy it now, but I know how to do it.

It’s not particularly fair to say just bung your officers in with the cadets when they practise… first of all we’re busy on parade nights, secondly what does that look like to the senior cadets?

OIC there’s drill; unless you’ve done it in these times of virtual courses.

Maybe there should be a training evening/evenings/day before big parades for those that need it to get to grips with it.

I’m not convinced it is always a lack of interest, or a perverse enjoyment of not being able to do it, but maybe more just a general lack of practise or experience.


My old Wing Weary Officer used to do that, staff rehearsal the month before the Wing Parade.

I went once checked the role I had done for years hadn’t changed (it hadn’t) then when I said “I’m not giving up a Saturday for this every year” I was demoted to Supernumerary on his plan because he’s a massive :bell:.

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