Q: What in the world is "wrapping the thumb?" Do you mean taping it?
A. No. It means putting the thumb underneath the barrel along with your other fingers whenever you're tossing it. Don't do this. Stick it out to the side or else it will throw off the toss and make it go flat instead of being straight like it's supposed to!
Courtesy of The Colorguard Site:
?. I have never tried colorguard before. Am I going to get hit with the flag if I join my school's colorguard?
A. I would like to say no, but that'd be a lie. Yes, you are going to get hit in some way sooner or later. But, that shouldn't be a reason for you not joining! Colorguard is a great experience!!
?. The flag keeps on rolling up when I'm spinning!! How do I stop it from doing that?
A. Keep your thumbs up or down, depending on the spin. Also, remember to grip the pole/flag!
?. I'm trying out for captian and I'm so nervous! Any tips?
A. Reeelllaaaaxx..... :) Although that may seem easy for me to say. Go to my Colorguard Tips sections for performance tips and there is a special Captian Audition Tips section coming soon! Good Luck!
?. What is winterguard?
A. Winterguard is colorguard in the fall/winter season without the band. Winterguards tend to do a lot more dance and bodywork, and it's indoors. They still do colorguard stuff with sabres, rifles, flags, etc etc, and most add different props to their shows. They compete in competitions with other winterguards too.
?. What are some good fundraisers for my guard?
A. There are lots of different things you could do for fundraisers. You could hold a carwash, sell raffle tickets at a football game, sell cookies, have a bake sale, sell pizza after school to your classmates...just some of the ideas that are out there. Talk to your director, he/she probably has even more ideas.
?. What in the world is "folding the floor"?
A. In a winterguard, we use a huge tarp for a makeshift football field. At the end of practices and shows, we fold it up, and it usually takes the whole entire guard to do it.
?. Are the rifles and sabres that you use real?
A. No. The rifles are wooden and the sabres do not have real blades.
?. I'm a guy. Can I join guard?
A. Absolutely! Unlike many other activites, there are no height, gender, weight, intelligence, appearance, etc requirements. Anyone can be in guard, just as long as they work hard.
?. I'm trying out for captian and I have to come up with a routine for my tryouts. I'm stumped on what music I should use. Any suggestions?
A. Technically, you could use any music for your routine. But, I would say as a general rule, don't use the "popular" music that's out these days (like pop or rock). Use something that's mainly instrumental, because that lets you put more emotion into the routine. But, if you want, you CAN use something that's popular. You can also cut music to make it shorter to make it easier to come up with a routine.
?. The marching season just ended, but I don't want to become out of shape over the winter. How can I stay in shape for next season?
A. Develop an exercise regime to keep over the winter and stick with it. If you can, join a winterguard. Just remember, don't slack off if you decide to do any of this!
?. I have a big problem with my guard instructor. They're so bossy and mean, and they don't listen to me! What should I do?
A. In general, the instructor's SUPPOSED to be bossy and mean. They're only trying to help you guys get disciplined, but any serious problem that you have with the instructor should be taken up directly with your band director without the instructor's awareness, such as if he/she is harassing you, pushing you to severe unrealistic expectations, things like that. If it's just a little problem, such as if you don't like their attitude or the work they're writing, it may be best just to talk to your instructor directly. But, ANY problem you have with the instructor should be at least mentioned to your band director.
?. I keep feeling dizzy and lightheaded during rehearsals. What's wrong?
A. The first thing that comes to mind is that you may not be getting enough water during practices. I can't stress this enough. If you're not getting adequate water while you practice, you may get dehyrated and that's a SERIOUS problem! If you still feel dizzy/lightheaded even when you drink lots of water, you should go see a doctor.
?. I get muscle cramps during practice and I'm sore all over after practices. What's wrong?
A. You may not be stretching enough before rehearsals. Every time you have a practice, the whole guard should spend a good 10-15 minutes stretching out your whole body. If you don't do this, you can cause serious injuries to yourself during practices because the muscles aren't properly stretched.
?. The band director and instructors at my school don't have try-outs for captain, they pick them. What can I do to stand out above the rest, and show that I'm captain material? (Submitted by Diana)
A. There are a number of things that you can do to show that you're captain material. Throughout the year (both in and out of marching season), band directors are looking for people who has followed directions all season long unfailingly, someone who is eager and earnest to participate and learn. Don't complain a lot and whine about things you don't like. Be friendly and fun-to-be-around. Take the charge in activities as much as you can. Show that you really like to do what you do. Take the initiative; be the first one who steps up to the challenge when no one else will. Don't be a brown-noser, but respect everyone around you and be friendly. Directors also look for abilty, how well you work with the equipment and your knowledge of it. Don't be disappointed if you don't get the bid for captain though. Always try again and don't lose that great smile!
?. My sabre keeps wobbling when I do a toss. What's up?
A. You may not be keeping your thumb flush with the blade or the hilt. Really squeeze the equipment and lock in your prep (if you do a prep). Also try tightening the screws on your hilt.
?. My rifle seems wobbly and it feels funny when I do work on it. What's wrong?
A. The only immediate answer I can give would be to check your strap. It may have come too loose and may need tightening. If you don't have a strap, your rifle may not be properly balanced. Return it for a new one.