Updated: November 11th, 2020
People are always looking for ways to improve their body immune system, keep fit, burn some calories, or just be healthy. Learning a musical instrument is more than having a desire to make music. Music is a powerful universal language. It can comfort, excite, and calm listeners as well as performers. Drums are musical instruments under the percussion group. However, besides the pleasing sounds that they produce when played, who knew that drumming has health benefits. There are many shreds of evidence of how drumming can affect one’s health positively. It could also be an avenue to improve your general well-being and be more active.
Drumming is a fun physical activity. It could become a hobby if you do not have an interest in it as a career path. Beating your drums and producing a combination of sounds or even listening to percussion sounds has therapeutic effects on the body. They are several drum types one can learn and practice. They range from tom-toms, congas, snares to full piece drum sets. You could even create your drum from old pots and pans.
#1 Reduces Tension, Anxiety, and Stress:
As an exercise, drumming releases hormones that are associated with feelings of well-being. The hormones help relieve stress and make you happy. Regardless of the drum that you use, whether a full set, conga, or djembe, the brain is set in a meditative mood as the hands and feet are in motion. Meditation provides mental relaxation. It helps the body control thoughts and calms the mind. The act induces a natural high due to the alpha waves generated by the brain while drumming.
Drumming releases negative feelings, blockages, and emotional trauma. Addicts could walk through their emotions through the act of drumming. It is a form of release that helps remove negative emotions that weigh down the body and cause depression. Research has shown that drumming can be used to treat health conditions like anxiety, PTSD symptoms, and aggression.
#2 Greater Cognitive Functioning:
Studies have shown that learning new things can change the internal structure of the neuron connections in the brain. The hippocampus is the part of the brain that aids learning and memory. It is the place where the growth of new brain cells takes place. New brain cells can be induced by engaging your brain in new challenges and tasks.
One of the first parts of the body that gets affected when you start learning to play drums is the brain. It is being exposed to something new and tasking. Drumming is, therefore, good exercise for the brain. You get to make use of your two hands and possibly, legs. The act of using the non-dominant hand (left hand for most people) is said to help strengthen the connection between brains. As an interactive practice, drumming has been shown to help people with ADHD, autism, dementia, and other neurological disorders have a better mastery of their brains. The positive change in the mind during drumming can also help slow down the brain’s aging process.
#3 Helps Control Chronic Pain:
Playing the drum serves as a distraction from pain. During a drumming session, the rhythmic energy produced as you sway and enjoy yourself helps promote the production of endorphins and endogenous opiates. These are morphine-like painkillers generated by the body to help control pain.
#4 Boosts The Immune System:
In the drumming community, there have been claims that playing drums could improve blood circulation and booster immunity. Drumming gently and slowly could enhance the flow of blood within the body. The act of drumming has been said to increase the production of disease-fighting blood cells. These white blood cells improve the capability of the body in combating cancer and several viruses.
#5 Form of Exercise:
The steady movement of the body during drumming is enough exercise of its own. Drumming can be as physically tasking as jogging, skiing, cycling, swimming, hiking, and playing soccer. A session of rigorous drumming could burn between 300 and 600 calories. The metabolic requirements of heavy drumming have been found to meet the guidelines for the development of body fitness. Most of your body parts are in motion, depending on the intensity of the music played. The muscles are also engaged. For a professional drummer, the practices (individuals and group), as well as gigs and shows, could sum up to a significant weight maintenance program.
At least, now you can turn your practice time into a brain and body-enhancing workout.
- It is fun: Not everyone would agree, though, but drumming can be fun. For professional drummers, the energy required to practice and perfect their skills can be challenging. They may have blisters and calluses on the hand. But in the end, the joy of doing what you love supersedes the mental and physical demands. For those looking for fun or a hobby or just drumming on their tables, drumming can be fun at that moment.
- It helps you be creative: Learning to play the drum is an excellent way of fostering creativity. Music is at the center of brain development. Listening to music or playing any musical instrument can neurologically activate different sections of the brain. It develops your music voice and trains your ear.
- It helps you practice better time management: To be a better drummer, you need to manage your time well. Combining practices with other things you need to achieve will guide you to manage your time better. Discipline, prioritizing, and ability to multitask become second nature to you also.
- It encourages social development: For those that attend drum classes or drum circles, you come in contact with people that have the same interests as you. A connection is built as you learn and practice together. Social bonds are created, and you become more self-confident in your ability to relate with others.
- It improves coordination: Drumming increases the connection between the left and right hemispheres of the brain. It stimulates alpha brain waves that help in better focusing and improved concentration, as well as helps develop sensory-motor skills, strength memory and improve general efficiency
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Drumming has positive effects on the health of an individual. It could help with several challenges such as stress, high blood pressure, addictions, asthma, et cetera. These conditions often weaken the heart and body. So, engaging in cardio-drumming classes where deep relaxation is encouraged, help. A drumming session increases heart rate and blood circulation, thereby keeping one fit.
Are drummers smarter?
The fun thing about drumming is that anyone can enjoy it, including the old, young, men, women, children. There is no intelligence required, no distinct race nor class. However, studies ongoing reveal that they might be a link between having problem-solving abilities and rhythmic accuracy. Since drumming may not make you smarter, a smart person is likely to enjoy drumming.
What is the purpose of a drum circle?
Group drumming, also known as a drum circle, is a gathering of several persons where they play the drums as a form of meditation, and for the healthy and therapeutic benefits they can obtain. It often works to boost self-awareness and reduce negative emotions. Drum circle therapy has been seen by many as a religious gathering and as a hippy group. However, drum therapy has benefits such as reduced stress and stronger immunity. Drumming with other people creates a connection and produces better self-awareness. It can also foster and strengthen social bonds among members. Surveys conducted show that such gatherings help promote feelings of well-being and selflessness, which help keep the body healthy.
How do you drum?
How can one play drums? Is drumming not a talent achieved by those gifted in that area? Like most new tasks, the challenging part is the beginning. Drumming requires interest and motivation. Learning how to drum depends on the driving force.
In cardio-drumming, all your need is a big yoga ball, a bucket to help balance it, and a pair of drumsticks. Then, you just pound the ball to a rhythm. Most cardio-drumming exercises are in the form of drum circles and group drumming. The workout sessions provide an all-round body exercise. You could also learn to drum by purchasing a drum kit, attending practice classes or learning online.