The salute is not simply an honor exchanged. It is a privileged gesture of respect and trust among soldiers. Remember the salute is not only prescribed by regulation, but also the recognition of other commitment, ability and professionalism.
Some historians believe the hand salute began in late Roman times when assassinations were common. A citizen who wanted to see a public official had to approach with his right hand raised to show that he possessed a weapon. Knights in armor raised visors with the right hand when meeting a mate. This practice gradually became a way of showing respect and, in early American history, sometimes involved removing the cap. In 1820, the movement has been modified to touching the hat, and has since become the handshake used today. Hail to show respect to an officer, the flag or our country.
The salute is widely misunderstood outside the military. Some consider it a gesture of servility since the lower extending a greeting to the top, but we know the opposite is true. The greeting is an expression that recognizes each other as a member of the profession of arms, which have made a personal commitment to self-sacrifice to preserve our way of life. The fact that young people extends the first greeting is simply a point of etiquette, a salute extended or returned makes the same statement.
The way we greet says a lot about you as a soldier. A proud salute, intelligent shows pride in yourself and your unit, and having confidence in your abilities as a soldier. A sloppy salute might mean that you are ashamed of your unit, lack of confidence, or at least they have not learned to salute properly.
In saluting, turn your head and eyes toward the person or the flag is waving. Take your hand until the correct one, smart motion without any preparatory movement. When dropping the salute, bring your hand straight down to his natural position at his side, without hitting your leg or moving your hand to the side. Any flourish in the greeting is incorrect.