c. Gestures. A gesture is the movement of any part of the body to convey a
thought or emotion or to reinforce oral expression. Your arms, hands, and body are
your principal tools of gesture. When instructing, let your gestures be natural. Never
rehearse specific gestures for use at definite points in your presentation. Gestures
should arise spontaneously from enthusiasm, conviction, and emotion. Do not try to
emphasize every statement with a gesture, though. To do so will defeat the purpose of
Instructors should avoid doing anything that causes the class to concentrate on
the instructor's mannerisms instead of the subject. Instructors may not be aware of their
peculiar mannerism unless they ask associates for constructive criticisms of their
delivery. Here are some common habits to avoid.
a. The Dying Warrior. The instructor leans heavily on the lectern, wears an air
of exhaustion, and never moves.
b. The Fig Leaf Stance. This is standing with hands clasped in front below the
waist and feet immovable.
c. The Walkie-Talkie. This pacer never stands still.
d. The Chained Elephant. This person stands with his weight first on one foot
and then on the other.
e. The Change Counter. This one counts the change in his pockets every two
f. The Swordsman. This one tries to duel with the pointer and forgets to put it
down when he is not using it.
There is no substitute for a physically vital and enthusiastic delivery. Enthusiasm
is contagious. It is evident in one form or another whenever a person is doing
something he sincerely likes. If an instructor is sold on his subject and conveys this
feeling to the class, he will keep his soldiers interested and eager to learn. An
enthusiastic instructor will help his students develop a favorable attitude and an
appreciation for the training program. The basis for an instructor's enthusiasm is a
thorough knowledge of his material and its usefulness to his students.