York College

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6th March 2019

Students at York College paraded in a military foot drill for an invited audience, demonstrating important qualities required in the Uniformed Public Services.

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Level 2 Uniformed Public Services students mastered their military drill in twenty teaching sessions and were judged by an external Subject Matter Expert. At the parade all students were presented with a Certificate of Achievement by Deputy Principal Louise Doswell.

Uniformed Public Services Tutor Andrew Davis explains: “Foot drill comes from the tradition of close order formation combat. It is a way of moving a group of people uniformly from one point to another, smartly and efficiently. Most people associate foot drills with events such as Trooping of the Colour, Changing the Guard and at State funerals and weddings, however, there are more important processes to understand.

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Andrew adds: “Nearly every industry has forms of drill, from Pilots’ set procedures in emergency situations to Police Officers securing a crime scene. Drills need to be second nature to an individual, being able to act and react to given circumstances in a predictable way. Foot drill teaches individuals to work effectively in a group. In this way, the group becomes a single cohesive entity, with limited words of command. Drills enable the Uniformed Public Services to carry out their missions and tasks quickly and efficiently, with simple and clear instructions.”

Foot drill teaches discipline, self-reliance, respect, trust and alertness, with the same skills and expectations used across all industries and sports. Student Alex Steele, formerly of King James School, Knaresborough, achieved a Distinction, he said: "I've been in the Air Cadets for two and a half years and I have been really impressed with how well my course mates have learnt foot drill - they have worked really hard to master the commands. I want to go into the Army, or maybe another uniformed service, and this course has been everything I expected it to be.  The course clearly outlines what you need to do to progress into the Uniformed Services and the tutors are very supportive and helpful." 

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Andrew Davis continues: “The difficulties in learning foot drill differ from person to person. Some people struggle with timings, with left and right, remembering what comes next and some or with the physical and mental complexity. Drill is a personal achievement, it helps individuals to overcome their own problems and difficulties, enabling them to come out the other side, stronger and better than before. It takes mental discipline and is physically and mentally tiring; managing all these areas at the same time, preventing any one of them from affecting ability or performance. The combination of all these factors, make it extremely hard and difficult to learn and master foot drill.”

Related Link

Entry to the Uniformed Services Diploma Level 2


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