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Everybody who's seen a war movie thinks they know how it's done, but here's how to execute a salute that would make even the toughest drill sergeant proud.
Step 1: Stand up straight
Stand up as straight as possible. Excellent posture is very important to a proper salute.
Step 2: Keep arms at your side
Keep both arms at your side, hands pointed directly at the ground, fingers together.
Step 3: Raise right hand
Raise your right hand, keeping hand straight and fingers together, until the tip of your forefinger touches the outside edge of your right eyebrow. Your hand should continue the line of your forearm.
Ideally, your upper arm should be parallel to the ground and your forearm at a 45-degree angle.
Step 4: Tilt palm down
Tilt the palm of your hand down so that it faces slightly inward to you.
Step 5: Hold salute
Hold the salute for 15 to 30 seconds.
For extra effectiveness, maintain eye contact throughout the salute.
Step 6: Put hand back down
Put your hand back down to your side in one swift motion. Any embellishment—like jerking your arm outward before it goes down—is considered poor taste.
Did You Know?
Modern militaries do not salute while deployed in the field, to prevent enemy snipers from identifying officers.