When you hear the phrase “Color Guard,” what do you think of? Parade Majorettes? The flag-twirling accompaniment to the band during half-time? The truth is, Color Guard has evolved throughout history, starting in ancient militaries and making its way to parades with classic drum and rifle lines before flag twirlers even came into the picture. Now, it’s a sport that is rapidly gaining popularity and branching off into scholastic programs and professional competitions alike. But what is Color Guard? A Color Guard is a group that uses various equipment like flags, rifles, and sabres. They perform around a piece of music, usually from a band or parade, and dance with their props. There are two levels of classification for Color Guard: Independent and Scholastic. Independent groups are self-organized and funded; sometimes they are an extension of a college program. It’s a physically intensive sport. Color Guard can demand anywhere from 2-4 hours of practice a day (the average practice schedule for a school program) to eight hours a day (professional). Being in Color Guard requires steady athleticism and endurance, as well as hand-eye coordination, grace, and strength. You’ll be jumping, rolling, and performing as well as throwing flags, sabres, and rifles into the air, so you shouldn’t skip any practice! A Color Guard usually performs outside, and the music they perform to is generally live, so timing is essential and usually practiced down to the second. It’s definitely a sport! Color Guard has the same commitment level as serious football or baseball, and any recognized Olympic sport, even if it isn’t yet part of the Games. Color Guard can be an incredibly fun and rewarding experience to be involved in, and you’ll make lifelong friends along the way. Interested in joining Color Guard? From batons to throwing techniques, we have all the tips and equipment you’ll ever need! For more information on getting started in Color guard, check out our blog!