The US Military Drill Platoons

Air Force Honor Guard Drill Team
Air Force Honor Guard Drill Team | Source

All Branches of the US Military are Represented

Each of the five US military branches (Navy, Marines, Army, Air Force, and Coast Guard) has a special unit known as a "precision drill team".

Some units perform in silence, not including the tapping cadence of their rifle butts, while others hear the sharp commands of their leader.

Typically, these teams perform for military, government, non-profit, and civilian organizations. The teams also take part in the highly competitive annual Joint Service Drill Team Competition, each hoping to win the coveted Trophy.

They are all equally amazing!

US Army Drill Team

The U.S. Army Drill Team is a precision drill platoon with the primary purpose of showcasing the U.S. Army through breathtaking routines and their bayonet-tipped, 1903 Springfield rifles.

The standard U.S. Army Drill Team performances include 19 Soldiers and last for about 10 to 15 minutes. In addition, they also have a “soloist” performance, which are comprised of four of the Drill Team’s senior Soldiers and either the Platoon Leader or the Platoon Sergeant. The smaller “soloist” performances are usually around five to seven minutes.

Through their complex and daring performances the U.S. Army Drill Team acts as “good-will ambassadors” to their crowd of fans.

The Army version of a precision drill team come primarily from the US Army's 3rd Infantry Regiment, also known as "The Old Guard", who also guard the Tomb of the Unknown Soldier.

US Navy Drill Team

I have a little bias as far as the Navy is concerned, as I am a Navy veteran.  But even still, they are known for some of the most complex and dangerous of skills. The soloists have been known to perform blindfolded while throwing and catching a rifle with fixed bayonet from their partners.

They are known as the Ceremonial Guard.

US Marine Corps Drill Team

The Marine Corps Silent Drill Platoon is comprised of a 24-man rifle platoon and is truly amazing sight to see.  They also go by the name of "The Marching Twenty Four".

They perform with M1 Garand rifles with fixed bayonets.  They are all male and all 5'11" and 6'1" tall, in which uniformity is critical.

You can also view their official Silent Drill Platoon page, with an impressive video.

US Air Force Drill Team

The United States Honor Guard Drill Team

After whatching these videos, who do you think would have won the competition?

  • US Army
  • US Navy
  • US Marine Corps
  • US Air Force
  • US Coast Guard
See results without voting

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Comments 3 comments

WillStarr profile image

WillStarr 5 years ago from Phoenix, Arizona

Excellent Hub, tritrain!

The Frog Prince profile image

The Frog Prince 5 years ago from Arlington, TX

I like your Hub. But have one minor correction. The US Coast Guard isn't a member, per se, of the US military. That is not meant to dishonor their mission. They are under the Department of Transportation, not Defense.

I have seen all the drill teams in my previous career and the most awesome of them all was the US Marine Corp team. That's hard to say coming from a life long Army guy.

The Frog

Stu From VT 5 years ago


This is great!!! Thanks for posting this.


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