Since the beginning of the military, soldiers have used various forms of standing to differentiate from one another. Since we can’t dress differently for obvious reasons, we need something beyond just rank to show our dominance or lack thereof. Not only does it help us with our dominance it also displays our character. While this may be good for some, for others it just paints a target. The idea for this article came from one of the same topics on Task & Purpose by Angry Staff Officer.
Might as well start where they did with the so properly named, “power stance”. This one is easily seen being used from the lowly private all the way up to the 4 star, possibly even SECDEF aka The Almighty Mattis. I highly doubt he doesn’t still use the power stance. What is the power stance you ask? It’s that crossed arm wide spread feet stance that is usually followed by the sharp stab of a knife hand. If you see this stance on anyone above E-4 you probably want to run.
Next up was “Thumbs In”. Not thumbs in the pockets, thumbs in the waistband. Commonly used by butter bars to avoid their pockets and set an example and stay under the radar. Trust me when I say I’ve seen butter bars get reamed by NCOs before. Nonetheless in front of higher ranking officers. Many other soldiers use it as well all up and down the ranks. Really this one is used to add a cool factor, especially when out on lunch an you’re trying to seem awesome in front of the civvies.
One of my personal favorites is resting parade rest. Mentioned by ASO as “Perennial Parade Rest”. I liked resting parade rest because when you see it, in actual formation terms it is rest — but the reason soldiers are standing that way is that they are usually FNGs that aren’t confident enough yet to not **** up so they stay at rest to be ready to snap into parade rest.
The last of them and worst of all is hands in the pocket. Easily the riskiest stance of them all. Commonly used by sham-shields aka specialists, warrants, and pilots. This stance oozes “I am above the rules” and is commonly used to portray that “I’m cooler than the arctic and I don’t need to follow regs” persona.
Choose wisely who you decide to be because someone is always watching and you never know when the Post Commander could drive by.
Disclaimer: The content in this article is the opinion of the writer and does not necessarily reflect the policies or opinions of US Patriot Tactical.
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