As a drummer, you know how important having quality drum sticks can be. But even with the right equipment, your hands, wrists, arms, feet and body all need extra focus, to ensure great coordination, control and speed.
To help you get started, here are a couple of exercises you can add to your routine:
Improve Grip Strength
Purchase a metal grip strengthener and keep it around the house for easy endurance practice while you’re watching TV or relaxing. If it’s too difficult at first, you can also use a squeeze ball, tennis ball, or even a bag of rice. To work on your endurance, simply squeeze as many times as you can for three sets, or squeeze as hard as you can for 10 seconds at a time.
Improve Wrist Control
Drumming on a practice pad or a surface that doesn’t bounce back (such as a pillow) will train you to use your wrists to control your drum sticks, as opposed to relying on the bounce-back energy from the drums. Practice paradiddle exercises and other rudiments with a metronome, and gradually work up your speed.
Improve Individual Finger Coordination
Keep your practice pad out, but put your drum sticks away for this next exercise. Turn on your metronome and place your hands on the pad. Practice tapping only with your pinky finger for several beats, then move on to using only your ring finger, and so on. By training each finger to move independently, you’ll have a better handle as you grip and pivot your drum sticks.
Photo by Josh Connell