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In SCA heavy weapons combat, the most common formation is called the shield wall. This can be as simple as having everyone with a shield make a line, shoulder to shoulder. Everyone else gets behind them. Some commanders/units will add order to the back field.

Reserve unit
A group of fighters held behind the shield wall in case a problem or opportunity develops.
Flanking unit
A group of fighters whose assigned task is the execute a Flank Right/Left independent of the main group's motion.
Columns of 2/3/4
The unit forms into 2,3 or 4 lines for marching with no expectation of attack (because the battle hasn't started yet and you're all trying to get through a small gate.)