To prepare for the upcoming competition on Jan. 25, Missouri’s winter guard team began meeting in the middle of September. Weekend practices began in November, starting at 6 p.m. Fridays and continuing until 2:30 Saturday morning before resting for a few hours and getting back to work.
The team is not restricted to students at MU. Many students at schools in the area who want to compete in winter guard travel to Columbia to work with Ionic.
The work that members do at practice goes beyond counting and technique, though. “In color guard there are two types of skills: emotional and technical,” design coach Zachary Barber said. During its weekends together, the team works on honing these two aspects of performance.