Playing an instrument requires both mental and physical strength. As someone aspiring to learn an instrument, you may face common injuries which with the right techniques can be avoided. Pain caused due to such injuries will only become an obstacle while learning to play an instrument. Due to the physical exertion, while drumming, players are prone to injuries which can sometimes lead to problems in the long run. If you wish to become a professional drummer, you need to take care of your physical capabilities and try to prevent such injuries before it’s too late. We will look at some of the common injuries that may occur while drumming and ways to avoid them.
Fingers play a key role when playing the drums. If you grip the stick too tight while playing, it can cause pain in the joint of your thumb. In the traditional grip, you mainly use the thumb to power the stick. Another common concern is soreness in your index finger. Try not to hold the stick too tight. Changing grips often can help to deal with drumming injuries.
Wrists help with the movement of the stick while playing the drums. Some players use their fingers more than their wrists and some of them use their wrists more than their fingers. Many players face pain in their wrists due to moving them in an unnatural way while playing the drums. Always practice warm-ups and loosen yourself up.
You may experience pain in your forearm due to overusing your forearm and elbow to power the stick. Not using your wrists and fingers to power the stick and depending completely on your forearms will cause pain to your forearms. Also, move your wrists in a way that your palms will be somewhat facing downwards. You should be able to power the stick through your wrists, fingers, and forearms and not just your forearms.
Some drummers experience pain in their upper arms due to overuse. Upper arms should be used to strike the right part of the drum.
Maintaining a good posture while learning to play the drums is extremely important. A slouched position can create a backache. Always try to keep a relaxed posture while playing.
Lack of good technique while playing the drums can lead to shoulder tension. If you feel pain in your shoulders, try improving your finger, wrist, and forearm technique.
If you are playing the drums with the heel-down technique, you may experience pain in your lower leg. Use foot pedals and make sure your foot is constantly in contact with the pedal.
If you are playing the drums with the heel-up technique, you may experience pain in your upper leg. Again using foot pedals can be helpful.
Other common drumming injuries are blisters which are bubbles within the upper layers of the skin. They are filled with fluid and are caused due to friction. Slowly these blisters can turn into calluses if you keep ignoring them. Relaxing your grip can help avoid such drumming injuries.
Here are some of the general ways in which you can avoid injuries while playing the drums.
As we have already discussed, the most common reason for pain and aches while drumming is the lack of good grip technique. So to avoid injuries in the long run, try changing your grip.
You may think that you are facing hand injuries due to hitting too hard. Most of the time, this is not true. Changing your grip can really help when learning the drums.
Always start your practice sessions with warm-ups. If you are experiencing hand injuries often, it’s advisable to look into your warm-up routine and change it accordingly.
It’s essential to cool down after a gig, especially after performing for long hours. Sometimes, you may not have the time. A couple of quick wrist and hand stretches are all you need. Ice packs or ice baths after an intense performance can also help.
Rest is important for every drummer. A person with an overworked brain or who is sleep deprived is more prone to hand injuries drumming.
If you are trying to make a career out of your drumming then don’t overexert yourself and don’t try to play through the pain. This will only worsen it and cause long-term injuries. Your body is trying to tell you something. Take time to listen to it and make sure to address it at an early stage.
If you are experiencing hand injuries or aches in the various parts of the body as discussed above, take time to examine it properly and find out why you are facing it. Then work accordingly to avoid it. If needed it is advisable to go and see a physician based on the intensity of the injury. Most injuries can be dealt with by changing grips and doing stretches. Sometimes, it’s a good idea to massage the sore areas. Also, keep yourself fit and take plenty of water.
If you think you need the right guidance while learning to play the drums, check out the various drum teachers at Music4humans and book your favorite teacher.
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