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Does anyone else play left hand on hat and worked through strength issues?

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  • Does anyone else play left hand on hat and worked through strength issues?

    When I started playing drums, I "naively" played with my left hand on the hi-hat automatcially. I've just stuck with it. I prefer the feel around the set this way, but I do have one challenge that I've only made very slow progress on. That is, I have trouble with 8th notes at even slightly fast tempos on the hi-hat in a way that my right hand does not. My left hand and wrist grow tired very fast and just can't keep up. Initially I just switched to quarter hat notes for any tempo that I couldn't maintain at 8ths, but this obviously limits my playing.

    I don't have this trouble on the snare because of the rebound. I can play with rebound to get fairly fast strokes. But on a rubber cymbal I haven't found a way to benefit from rebound. I haven't been able to pull of something like, say, the Moeller technique. I'm wondering if there are any tips to getting better rebound / control on rubber cymbal pads; or perhaps excercises to strengthen my left hand, wrist, fingers, since playing alone hasn't seen much improvement over several months.

    Edit: I'm right-handed, which is why my right hand started out stronger.
    Big J Money
    Registered Member
    Last edited by Big J Money; 12-24-21, 10:59 PM.
    Roland TD-15 (upgraded pads); Mackie ProFX8; Samson D1200 + 2xD208; Windows 10 Desktop PC

  • #2
    Originally posted by Big J Money View Post
    When I started playing drums, I "naively" played with my left hand on the hi-hat automatcially. I've just stuck with it. I prefer the feel around the set this way, but I do have one challenge that I've only made very slow progress on. That is, I have trouble with 8th notes at even slightly fast tempos on the hi-hat in a way that my right hand does not. My left hand and wrist grow tired very fast and just can't keep up. Initially I just switched to quarter hat notes for any tempo that I couldn't maintain at 8ths, but this obviously limits my playing.

    I don't have this trouble on the snare because of the rebound. I can play with rebound to get fairly fast strokes. But on a rubber cymbal I haven't found a way to benefit from rebound. I haven't been able to pull of something like, say, the Moeller technique. I'm wondering if there are any tips to getting better rebound / control on rubber cymbal pads; or perhaps excercises to strengthen my left hand, wrist, fingers, since playing alone hasn't seen much improvement over several months.

    Edit: I'm right-handed, which is why my right hand started out stronger.
    I could write 10 pages to give you an answer but I'm just going to refer you to my source in stead: drumworkout.com. I took the extreme hands makeover course and I advanced like 70 times faster than on my own. It's a monthly fee I can't remember how much I'm paying. All possible techniques are tought in the relevant order to give you a complete set of hands that can play anything you throw at them. It's tought in a very different way that is brilliant.

    Oh and I'm not affiliated lol.

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    • #3
      I've come across the problem Big J Money describes so must check out frankzappa's promising site, thanks.

      While I've always been fairly ambidextrous about 20 years ago I decided to really concentrate on developing my weaker hand (i.e. left in my case) and as I improved eventually moved my ride cymbal over to the hi-hat side of the kit. It's so natural now I don't even think about it. However during lockdowns I've studied this a lot and I've found Gordy Knudston's 'push-pull' online videos very good for developing strength and grip. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ld1pOsCB2FY
      I also noticed a significant improvement once lockdowns eased and I was able to get back to rehearsing with bands - nothing quite like playing to get 'match fit'
      TD-50 - X upgraded, Jobeky Prestige Custom shells, SPD-SX, Nord Drum P3, SPD-30, Paiste Signature cymbals, DW 6000+9000 hardware, Lewitt LCT 140 cymbal mics, Allen & Heath ZED10 mixer, Fohhn Xperience III drum PA, Fohhn XT-33 active speaker drum monitor, Porter & Davies Gigster tactile monitor drum throne

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      • #4
        I am left handed but play with my kit set-up for right handed play...my son is right handed so I just set it up so he could play and I dealt with it. Im not sure I could even play with everything set-up for left handed playing...oh well...back to your question, I never had a problem with strength in my left hand but I do with my right hand.

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        • #5
          FWIW I am finding that working through the first few pages of Steve Gadd's 'Gaddiments' book is helping with improving my weaker hand. As in all the classic drum books he forces you to go back and fore between left and right and shortcomings on the weaker hand show up immediately
          TD-50 - X upgraded, Jobeky Prestige Custom shells, SPD-SX, Nord Drum P3, SPD-30, Paiste Signature cymbals, DW 6000+9000 hardware, Lewitt LCT 140 cymbal mics, Allen & Heath ZED10 mixer, Fohhn Xperience III drum PA, Fohhn XT-33 active speaker drum monitor, Porter & Davies Gigster tactile monitor drum throne

          Comment


          • #6
            I think that thinking of it in terms of a strength deficit that needs to be overcome is probably the wrong approach. It is more likely a technique issue. Books and videos can be helpful but nothing Beats 1-on-1 instruction from an experienced teacher for live feedback.

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