Some of the best parts of color guard are the friendships you develop from being part of a team. But building a cohesive team takes effort from every individual. Here are ways that you can contribute!
New members are especially anxious. Welcome them, ask them to sit with you during breaks and offer encouragement and support.
Talk to Everyone
It’s easy to slip into the comfort of a small clique. Make a special effort to talk to everyone.
Complaining can quickly snowball and bring the whole team down. If you need to vent, do so to your parents or a journal, but keep things positive with your teammates.
Know Your Stuff
If you’re slacking with routines, your teammates will be frustrated. Make this a first priority!
Attend Guard Parties
They’re a great opportunity to get to know your teammates outside of rehearsal.
Follow Chain of Command
Sometimes issues or conflicts arise that need attention. Avoid rumors. Bring your concerns privately and respectfully to your coaches. You’ll avoid creating “drama,” and they’ll appreciate your mature approach.
What can you do to brighten everyone’s day? Maybe cookies and milk after rehearsal? Perhaps a fun sign for the guard closet? Unexpected surprises make things more fun.
Take a Deep Breath
If you’re struggling with a new section of the routine, take a deep breath and know that all of your teammates have been there before. Give yourself time or ask for help, but avoid showing your frustrations because stress spreads.
Fun traditions from wearing mismatched socks at rehearsal to special good luck gestures on competition day can help bring everyone closer.
Lend a Hand
See someone struggling? Offer to help. Not only will your teammate improve, but you’ll also have time to get to know him or her better too. It’s a win-win.
By participating in team building, you’ll create a family of performers who will help one another through difficult times and create amazing memories you’ll treasure for a lifetime!
About the Author
Catina Anderson has been involved in the color guard activity, first as a performer and then instructor, for the past 20 years. She is a consultant at Broad Run High School in Ashburn, Va. She is also the founder/editor of www.colorguardeducators.com, a website for color guard coaches. She earned a bachelor’s degree at Towson University and a master’s degree in education from Marymount University.