There are 4 amazing ways to practice playing the drums without actual drums. While there isn’t any one size fits all method, there are a lot of different ways to substitute a drum set in order to cater different purposes. Here are 4 very effective ways to practice:
You can take your pair of sticks and pillow and practise the rudiments like the way you would on your drum sets so that you could practice at home. Your drum sticks are very important, you need to replicate the hand and finger motions to perform the drum set. This type of practise would be transferable. We all know that the pillow is definitely softer than the head of the drums, so there’s less rebound. When there’s less rebound, the stick wouldn’t really be thrown back at you so you need to train your muscles to move. At the start, it would be difficult, but that’s the reason why practising is important. When you practice, you would be able to be better in no time.
Here are some pillow practices by Hyorki Nieblas:
I’m betting that we all had that moment that we secretly air drum before taking drum lessons for real. Air drumming is more than just imagining how to play, it’s also a way to practise. Remember that your brain and arm doesn’t need to think when doing movements. When doing this, you don’t need the sticks, it’s also not really about the training of your fingers or muscles, it’s more about developing muscle memory and hand coordination. You can visualize where your drum set parts are situated, and smash on to your imaginative kit.
The crucial part here is that when you want to hit the crash cymbals repeatedly, you have to make sure that your arm is moving and arriving at the same approximated time and point in the air like there’s really cymbals. If not, there wouldn’t be any repetitive movement that your brain would need to internalize. When you visualize alone, this is not enough because you need to imagine your drum set the way it would be in real life. If imagination is not enough for you, you can try other ways to visualize it like this guy who painted the drum set into his wall:
This one is very different from when you air drum with your hands, with this one, you are using your lower body. When you get back into playing the drums and you have practised both your upper and lower body, this will give you more edge. The ground doesn’t offer much rebound, so it’s unlikely to feel your muscles after practicing. But as you go by, this would be a progress. This would also make you faster when you play on a real drum set. This type of practice is suitable for both heel up and down techniques. Here’s a sample:
This one doesn’t really develop any muscle memory, it’s more for timing. Which is beneficial when you can’t keep good timing yet. There other suggestions when it comes to this practice such as beatboxing, singing, and others but we prefer this one because it’s non complex. Before you think that this one is boring, you got that wrong. If you take it as far as this video, clapping could get pretty awesome:
You see, these examples are just ways that we recommend for you to practice playing the drums without having actual drum sets. You could spice it up by adding combinations and making it more challenging whenever needed.
Have you tried any of these examples yet? Would you want to share your very own experience? If you have questions, you could also drop us a comment so we could hear your side and answer your questions.