Hand-Kick independence

So a problem for is having my kick and my hands be more independent so that I can play different kick patterns without messing up my hands. Is there any exercise I could do to improve my kick-hand independence
 

Dr_Watso

Platinum Member
What helped me the most is simply running through sub-division notes on my foot while I played normal beats on the rest of the kit. Typically I do quarters, 8ths, trips, and 16ths at a given tempo.
 

larryace

"Uncle Larry"
So a problem for is having my kick and my hands be more independent so that I can play different kick patterns without messing up my hands. Is there any exercise I could do to improve my kick-hand independence
If this issue you're having is what I think it is, a mental coordination block, this exercise should remove it, if you work at it. It did with me. Try this. It takes a few minutes of focus.

Play either the kick pattern or the hand pattern, not both. Next, just think what the missing pattern would sound like, integrated into what you are already playing. If you truly can't play it, just thinking about it will probably throw off your playing too. Once you trip, you've identified your stumbling point. Before you are able to play it, you have to be able to think it. If you can't think it without stumbling, you can't sing it. If you can't sing it, you can't play it. So just keep trying to integrate the part mentally without stumbling. That's the meat of the work. You are actually forming brand new neural connections. When you can think about it without stumbling with what you are playing...then it's time to try and sing it. Only after you are able to sing it will you be able to play it. I sounded like a deaf person trying to talk when I first vocalized a block I was trying to bust through. Eventually I was able to vocalize it normally. then playing it is right around the corner. Once that happens, you have it for life.

Hint: the stumbling point for me was when I had to play two notes on different drums at the same time. Linear is easy, it's the common unison notes that would throw me.
 

Odd-Arne Oseberg

Platinum Member
Most fundamental exercises for the kit are essentially about this in some shape or form. There's not one thing that takes care everything.

What have you been working on so far and what do you want to be able to do?
 

trickg

Silver Member
So a problem for is having my kick and my hands be more independent so that I can play different kick patterns without messing up my hands. Is there any exercise I could do to improve my kick-hand independence
How long have you been playing? Are you talking about development of normal drum technique and independence/interdependence, or are you talking about more complex stuff - polyrhythms and that sort of thing?

If it's basic coordination, the only way I've been able to do it is to just muscle through it - slow things down to a point where it's excruciatingly slow enough that you can literally think it through as you are breaking the connections between your hands and feet. Case in point, playing normal kick patterns while switching to syncopated quarter notes on the bell of my ride with my right hand. When I first started doing that, it was excruciating. Disco hats too with syncopated quarters on hats while doing open/close with the foot.

As simple as this might sound, sometimes the only thing that is really going to help is dedicated, focused practice - break things down to the simplest elements with slow tempos, and work on that until it becomes second nature at that tempo.
 

benthedrum

Senior Member
Frank Briggs who was a guest drummer on drumeo has a fantastic PDF on this.
https://www.drumeo.com/beat/frank-briggs-drum-lessons/


His lesson was entitled "Building a Musical Vocabulary".

The way I use it is this.......

I use a single parradiddle between my right and left foot as the ostinato.

I do 2 and 4 on my left hand on the snare or tom.

I use the PDF as cymbal rhythms with my right hand....I may use the ride, floor tom, cowbell or hi-hats.

I use a backing track available on YouTube at around 60bpm and work up to a new slightly faster tempo from there.

It really opens up your left foot and you are essentially playing 4 different things with each limb.

It also really trains you to lock into a groove with all sorts of stuff going on........
 
to go more in depth what i mean is whenever i try to play something with my hands, my foot does it to on the kick, i can't do one thing differently on either.
 

JustJames

Platinum Member
Independence issues ceased to exist for me one I had mastered Polynesian Nightmare.

Also, learn the basics of reading music notation for drums.
 

loach71

Senior Member
Purchase, beg, borrow, or steal a copy of Jim Chapin's "Independence, The Open End - Vol 2." It is a huge 3 ring binder that uses clear overlays and window pages to teach your mind and body 4-way coordinated independence. This book is available on a few internet sites for about $100.00. Is is worth every penny. I purchased a copy in the mid-1970s and use it to this day.

Dom Famularo (one of Chapin's notable students) sold it on his website.
 

brentcn

Platinum Member
to go more in depth what i mean is whenever i try to play something with my hands, my foot does it to on the kick, i can't do one thing differently on either.
Yes, I get it. I help students through it all the time; it's literally my job.

You need to learn to read notation. There is no way around it.
 

Odd-Arne Oseberg

Platinum Member
Sorry i do not really know how to read notations
That's a pretty strong indication that you should probably focus on that first. You have to know what you're doing and exactly what you know or don't.

I'm not talking about sight reading here. That can be discussed in some cases, but the advantage of having visuals to organize things can not.

Get a basic snare book and ditto drumkit book. I prefer some Norwegian ones and my ones materail so I'll leave it to others to chime in, but stuff like Podemski snare book and Funky Primer are the type of stuff you should be lookng into.

I don' t know you, but there's a great probability in my mind that you're putting the cart in front of the horse here.
 

mikyok

Platinum Member
Purchase, beg, borrow, or steal a copy of Jim Chapin's "Independence, The Open End - Vol 2." It is a huge 3 ring binder that uses clear overlays and window pages to teach your mind and body 4-way coordinated independence. This book is available on a few internet sites for about $100.00. Is is worth every penny. I purchased a copy in the mid-1970s and use it to this day.

Dom Famularo (one of Chapin's notable students) sold it on his website.
We have a winner!

Had lessons on this stuff from one of Jims proteges and the man himself. Get a good teacher to get you into it as you'll encounter some serious mind f*cks along the way. You have to train your mind and body. Takes a lot of practice and frustration but when you get something it's so rewarding.

Master Studies Joe Morello is another great book. Great for the hands and the book says switch the exercises to your feet. It will add a great fluidity to your playing, it's really cheap to and if you're struggling with reading it starts at the basics.
 

loach71

Senior Member
We have a winner!

Had lessons on this stuff from one of Jims proteges and the man himself. Get a good teacher to get you into it as you'll encounter some serious mind f*cks along the way. You have to train your mind and body. Takes a lot of practice and frustration but when you get something it's so rewarding.

Master Studies Joe Morello is another great book. Great for the hands and the book says switch the exercises to your feet. It will add a great fluidity to your playing, it's really cheap to and if you're struggling with reading it starts at the basics.
The Chapin book was the best $$ I ever spent. If you take care of the book, it will last a lifetime. You will never reach the end of the material presented in that book. If you master the first 6 pages with ALL of the transparent overlays, you will notice a shocking increase in your coordinated independence. Don't get disappointed when you first start using the book. Keep at it and never look back. As my USMC friend said to me, Improvise, Adapt, Overcome!
 

MrInsanePolack

Platinum Member
I would just like to add: GO SLOW! Working through this stuff slowly helps with coordination and placement issues. If it's hard to do slow, trying to do it at speed will be extremely frustrating.
 

mrfingers

Senior Member
I would think the easiest way to start this “independence” is to do buzz or easy double strokes with hands while playing quarters(4 on the floor) then change to 8ths on the floor. Do the same with doubles on the kick. Change over to singles 1/4s with your hands alternating with 1/4s on the kick, then 8ths on the kick. It’s a simple way to start.
 

trickg

Silver Member
That's a pretty strong indication that you should probably focus on that first. You have to know what you're doing and exactly what you know or don't.
There are a couple of different schools of thought when it comes to knowing how to read music as a drummer.

One day I was in my local Guitar Center to get something from Pro Audio, and decided to swing over to the drum department to say hi to the guys there. There was a circle conversation going on as I walked up, and the one guy was talking about a recent experience he'd had with a producer in a studio - the producer was all in a tizz because he didn't read music. He was like, "there's a reason they hired me - just tell me what you want, and I'll play it."

Apparently the inability to read music hasn't hurt this guy much. I suppose I should mention that this guy talking about his experience was Dennis Chambers, so yeah - there's that.
 

Pocket-full-of-gold

Platinum Member
Apparently the inability to read music hasn't hurt this guy much.
It's already hurting the OP though.

He's just been presented with some of the best exercises available in order to separate his hands and feet. It is a direct and immediate solution to his problem. Although he can't yet read the single bar exercises in order to get started, it's super easy to start learning.

We're not talking about developing the sight reading abilities of Vinnie Colaiuta here. But the ability to read the very simple exercises that brentcn posted would do wonders for the OP.

They are easy to learn and will fix the very issue he's addressing. I honestly can't see why you wouldn't bother to learn to read simple things at least.

These are the rhythmic equivalent of See Spot Run, not War and Peace.
 
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