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  • kick question from a relatively new drummer...

    hey guys. first of all let me say how happy i am to discover that there's a drum forum on HC! i've been posting a lot in the effects forum but now i have a question for you cats:

    i'm a fairly new drummer and i notice that my kick pedal foot gets tired after a little while of playing. i'm wondering if it's normal or if something is *askew* with my technique.

    as far as i can tell i play "heel-down" and i don't really let the beater bounce back when i play. i sort of leave it touching the drum head until i do the next kick. is this bad practice? thanks in advance for any advice ya'll might have!

  • #2
    As far as the fatigue goes. It is fairly standard for your limbs to feel tired/soar when first starting to play. You are asking your body to do somthing it has never done before. As long as it is just general aches, like after working out, and not sharp pains. You are probably just using muscles you have not used before. Somebody else probably knows more about this then me but thats my opinion.
    <div class="signaturecontainer">How can SO many musicians not understand music?<br />
    <br />
    www.brokenwalls.com<br />
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    JR</div>

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    • #3
      let the beater bounce off the head. It sounds better, and is more natural. It's the same with sticks. You dont make a stroke, and hold the stick down and pull it back up, your body has to work twice as hard: you make the stroke, and let the stick rebound off the head and back into position. Same applies for the bass drum. Your fatigue is simply because you havent been doing it long. There was a post from a week or two ago about this very same topic, I suggest you check it out. Also, I could suggest a good video about both hand and foot technique: Dave Weckl - A Natural Evolution - Volume 1: how to develop technique.


      Hope this helps

      ------------------
      "It's having fun that you grow! oh!" - Tony Williams
      <div class="signaturecontainer">&quot;It's having fun that you grow! oh!&quot; - Tony Williams</div>

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      • #4
        I remember when I first started playing my calf muscles would hurt real bad. It took a good two months for that to go away..Heavy bass pedal playing helps your basketball jumping...i'll tell you that!!!

        Peace.

        -kevin-
        <div class="signaturecontainer">...Silence is acceptance...</div>

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        • #5
          Originally posted by shhpeaceful:
          let the beater bounce off the head. It sounds better, and is more natural.


          for some reason when i try to let the beater bounce back it doesn't bounce back evenly, if that makes any sense. should i be rocking my foot back on my heel immediately after i kick?

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          • #6
            In general, heel down = beater bounces off of head, heel up = beater stays on head. If you're playing heel down and trying to keep the beater buried, that's probably why your foot fatigues quickly. Either switch to heel up or don't bury the beater and see if that helps.
            <div class="signaturecontainer">&quot;As long as there's, you know, sex and drugs, I can do without the rock and roll.&quot; - Mick Shrimpton</div>

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            • #7
              Hell, sometimes my leg/foot still gets tired. It's part of being new to it.
              <div class="signaturecontainer"><a href="http://www.moderndrunkardmagazine.com/" target="_blank">Modern Drunkard Magazine</a><br />
              <a href="http://www.slimcessnasautoclub.com" target="_blank">Slim Cessna's Auto Club</a><br />
              <br />
              <a href="http://www.slimcessnasautoclub.com/downloads/mp3s/pinebox.mp3" target="_blank">Listen to Pine Box</a><br />
              <a href="http://smoochrecords.com/audio/Munly&amp;The_Lee_Lewis_Harlots-The_Denver_Boot_Redux.mp3" target="_blank">Listen to Munly</a><br />
              <br />
              &quot;There ain't no devil, there's just god when he's drunk&quot; -Tom Waits</div>

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              • #8
                Originally posted by P1:
                In general, heel down = beater bounces off of head, heel up = beater stays on head. If you're playing heel down and trying to keep the beater buried, that's probably why your foot fatigues quickly. Either switch to heel up or don't bury the beater and see if that helps.


                so with "heel up" i have to use my whole leg to play the kick? sorry if my questions are lame! i'm actually a guitar/bass player...

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                • #9
                  Originally posted by animaltown:
                  so with "heel up" i have to use my whole leg to play the kick? sorry if my questions are lame! i'm actually a guitar/bass player...


                  No, you don't have to. I tend to push downwith my leg, kinda like pedaling a bike. However, I've seen guys tap the pedalboard with their toes like ballerinas.
                  <div class="signaturecontainer"><a href="http://www.moderndrunkardmagazine.com/" target="_blank">Modern Drunkard Magazine</a><br />
                  <a href="http://www.slimcessnasautoclub.com" target="_blank">Slim Cessna's Auto Club</a><br />
                  <br />
                  <a href="http://www.slimcessnasautoclub.com/downloads/mp3s/pinebox.mp3" target="_blank">Listen to Pine Box</a><br />
                  <a href="http://smoochrecords.com/audio/Munly&amp;The_Lee_Lewis_Harlots-The_Denver_Boot_Redux.mp3" target="_blank">Listen to Munly</a><br />
                  <br />
                  &quot;There ain't no devil, there's just god when he's drunk&quot; -Tom Waits</div>

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                  • #10
                    Originally posted by animaltown:
                    for some reason when i try to let the beater bounce back it doesn't bounce back evenly, if that makes any sense. should i be rocking my foot back on my heel immediately after i kick?


                    You must learn to do this now, before you get used the habit of "burying" the beater.

                    When I began playing drums no one was there to tell me about letting the beater rebound and so I developed a horrible kick drum technique. I am still re-training myself and it has been a whole lot of work to learn to let it bounce. So, please, learn from my mistake and work on not "burying" ther beater.

                    You don't need to rock your foot back. Just let it come back by itself. Basically you need to ease up the pressure your are using to move the beater forward before it hit the head.

                    Think of it this way: you're dribbling a basketball, not hammering a nail!

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                    • #11
                      Don't play heal down! Some drummers prefer it, but it is really weak. If you play heal up, you then have the ability to utilize the pedal in different ways. For example, striking the drum once with your foot placed somewhere towards the middle of the pedal, then letting the beater rebound as you slide your toe towards the front of the pedal. This allows you to place faster doubles and tripples with very little effort. Work on this technique and you won't get tired.

                      -MCK
                      <div class="signaturecontainer">Matthew C. Kelly, Attorney At Law<br />
                      Music &amp; Entertainment</div>

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                      • #12
                        hmm, so many different answers! i think i like the sound of "heel-down" better but then again what do i know? playing "heel-up" seems like so much more work because you have to lift your whole leg, no?

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                        • #13
                          Originally posted by animaltown:
                          hmm, so many different answers! i think i like the sound of "heel-down" better but then again what do i know? playing "heel-up" seems like so much more work because you have to lift your whole leg, no?


                          Okay, okay...get good at both. You'll be a better drummer if you do. It'll give you more flexibility.
                          <div class="signaturecontainer"><a href="http://www.moderndrunkardmagazine.com/" target="_blank">Modern Drunkard Magazine</a><br />
                          <a href="http://www.slimcessnasautoclub.com" target="_blank">Slim Cessna's Auto Club</a><br />
                          <br />
                          <a href="http://www.slimcessnasautoclub.com/downloads/mp3s/pinebox.mp3" target="_blank">Listen to Pine Box</a><br />
                          <a href="http://smoochrecords.com/audio/Munly&amp;The_Lee_Lewis_Harlots-The_Denver_Boot_Redux.mp3" target="_blank">Listen to Munly</a><br />
                          <br />
                          &quot;There ain't no devil, there's just god when he's drunk&quot; -Tom Waits</div>

                          Comment


                          • #14
                            Heel up!!!
                            Practice, practice, practice...

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                            • #15
                              Heel up, heel down... whatever... Play either, or play both (even within the same song!) The fact is that it really doesn't matter which you prefer, because there are excellent players that use both/either technique.

                              What does matter is that you let the beater rebound, and that at all costs you avoid tension in your leg, ankle, or foot.



                              [This message has been edited by Actionsquid (edited May 07, 2002).]

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