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Opening and Closing Ranks


1. Instructional Formation, MARCH. AT EASE. The next movements, which I will name, explain, have demonstrated, and which you will conduct practical work on, are opening ranks and closing ranks.

2. Opening ranks is used to prepare your platoon for inspection or for grounding equipment. Closing ranks is used to return the formation to its original configuration.

3. The commands for these movements are, Open Ranks, MARCH, and Close Ranks, MARCH.

4. Open Ranks, MARCH, and Close Ranks, MARCH are two-part commands, Open Ranks and Close Ranks are the opreparatory commands and MARCH is the command of execution.

5. When given, these commands are as follows: Open Ranks, MARCH. Close Ranks, MARCH.


6. Demonstrators, POST. I will use the talk-through method of instruction.

7. Open Ranks, MARCH is executed from a line formation while at the halt. It may be executed while at any of the prescribed intervals.

8. On the command of execution MARCH of Open Ranks, MARCH, the platoon leader and platoon sergeant take the appropriate number of steps to maintain their posts.

9. The first rank takes two steps forward, the second rank takes one step forward, the third rank will stand fast, and the fourth rank takes atwo steps backward. If additional ranks are present, the fifthe rank will take four steps backward, and the sixth rank takes six steps backward.

10. NOTE: After taking the prescribed number of steps, the men do not raise their arms. If the platoon leader or platoon sergeant desires exact interval or alignment, he will command At Close Interval (At Double Interval), Dress Right, DRESS.

11. To return the platoon to its original configuration, the command is Close Ranks, MARCH. On the command of execution MARCH of Close Ranks, MARCH, the fourth rank takes one step foward, the third rank stands fast, the second rank takes two steps backward, and the first rank takes four steps backward.

12. At normal cadence, these movements would look as follows: Open Ranks, MARCH. Close Ranks, MARCH. AT EASE.

13. What are your questions pertaining to these movements when executed at normal cadence or using the talk-through method of instruction?

14. Demonstrators, ATTENTION. You will now become my assistant instructors. FALL OUT.


15. FALL IN. I will use the talk through method of instruction.

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