Drill instructors perform a hygiene inspection to ensure recruits have adequately showered and shaved, and have no medical issues. This basically just us walking by and making sure that recruits have no problem that can affect them from training. Photo by Mark Kauffman, July 1951.
Back then (it was still done as of 2002, at least in the Marines) the recruits had full body naked inspections called “hygeine inspections” to make sure they didn’t have ingrown hairs, staph, etc. It was really weird, 200 guys all standing naked at attention, and then when the company commander comes through to take a look at everyone, you have to kind of spin around like a ballerina so the co can see your whole body, and all of this is in front of everyone. They would line up the troops when they got home and in assembly line fashion spray them with pesticides (usually DDT because of how safe it was for people). This kept the troops healthy and clean.
It was also done because in Marine training you all pile in your laundry together and you don’t ever get your particular short, socks and shirts back. You end up with everyone else’s stuff and by checking everyone like that it reduces the chance of spreading infections. It was done in a professional manner, quickly, thoroughly and without any hint of sexual connotation.
Interesting fact. In militaries, the term “short-arm inspection” refers to the medical inspection of male soldiers’ penises (euphemistically referred to as the “short arm”) for signs of sexually-transmitted diseases and other medical problems. The precise origin of the term is uncertain; however, Australian troops are known to have used the term during the First World War.