martial arts and drumming

drummingman

Gold Member
what do you all think about studying martial arts if the plan is to be a touring drummer? i ask this because my plan is to be touring full time over the next few years and i have a huge interest in becoming proficient in a martial art as well. do you all think that it is possible to be able to be a full time touring recording musician and still be able to put in time to become good at martial arts while on the road?
also, do you think that it is worth the risk? meaning, there is always risk of injury when studying a martial art. so is it worth it to study a martial art and maybe get injured and maybe interfere with my drumming career?
i also look as martial arts as a way to stay in shape. to be honest weight lifting and running on a treadmill and doing other traditional exercise bores the heck out of me. so doing a martial art would be a good way for me to get into and stay in shape. so that is a big factor for me.
i know that there are a few other well known musicians that study martial arts, one being duff mackagan from guns and roses and velvet revolver. he seems to be able to do well studying martial arts and still being a full time touring and recording musician.
i have gone back and forth on this issue for a few years. but in a few months im hoping to kick my music career into overdrive so i have been thinking about it again tonight.
so, what do you all think?
 

aydee

Platinum Member
I think more than anything else, all martial arts ( or Tai-Chi, or even Dance for that matter ) and drumming should have great affinity
because they are all about making the body to move with fluidity, power and control.

They are all studies in the physics of movement, economy of motion, precision power and balance.

Unlike almost any other instrument, including even hand drums, the drum set is uniquely the most physical of musical instruments. Your entire being is in action while playing them.

Martial arts teaches you to discipline the body & the mind....the two things that have to work together for a drummer too.

Its a win-win, I'd say.
 

drummingman

Gold Member
thanks for your thoughts aydee.
oh, just to say i have tendinitis in both of my wrists. i have had surgery twice on my left one about 10 years ago. its much better now but i still get some pain in both wrists at time, such as when i lift something heavy in a unstable way.
 

harryconway

Platinum Member
As Aydee put it so well, depending on your study of martial arts, it's not about crushing rocks and bricks, breaking boards and winning bar fights.....it's a path. I took Shodokan, for 2 semesters in college. The sensei was then 1974 world champion. His sensei was Gichin Funakoshi, who brought Shodokan to the US in 1957 (if I remember correct). The experience has followed me, my whole life. They have only 3 colors (belts). It could take years to get to brown, and many more to get to black. Not for the "standard" American mindset, where so many people want instant gratification. Drumming is a martial art, in so many ways, already. An endless path...and endless journey. Hopefully, ya have some fun, and learn a few things along the way. And if you keep away from breaking boards and bricks (and that "extreme" full contact stuff) you'll probably not have any broken bones......then again, I broke my pelvis in 3 places in a motorcycle accident....maybe I should have stuck to bar fights.
 

rogue_drummer

Gold Member
Definately study martial arts. I started in college and took it for about 6 years on and off from age 18 - 23 and received a Red Belt (Brown in other styles) in Moo Duk Kwan Tae Kwon Do; 6 months away from black belt. Our grand master was a Korean National Champion and our master was a former Green Beret who served in Vietnam. The martial arts will not only teach you discipline and humility, but also mind and body harmony and coordination. Not to mention the self-defense aspects of whatever art form you choose. And it's something that can be practiced from the road.

Krav Maga is an Israeli form. It has it's roots in the Israeli Defense Force. A major school in America has it so that no matter where you are located and paid the dues, when you travel, you can go into any school and practice free of charge. Tae Kwon, JuJisu, Aikedo, Kung Fu, ect. are all good forms to study and will provide you ample opportunities to exercise and develop good coordination. I hope this helps.
 

EltonBear

Junior Member
I've been thinking of doing this as well - as you say, it's much better than lifting the heavy things (quick Dylan Moran reference there).

I think it could really help your playing, especially the Moellar stuff. Good luck with it!
 

drummingman

Gold Member
so i have been been looking into doing martial arts again. i am dealing with a little arm pain from my tendiitis as is. i hope to be starting martail arts soon, karate to be exact. here be the link to the school. check it out.
http://www.virginiakempo.com/
 

Francis

Member
I think more than anything else, all martial arts ( or Tai-Chi, or even Dance for that matter ) and drumming should have great affinity
because they are all about making the body to move with fluidity, power and control.

They are all studies in the physics of movement, economy of motion, precision power and balance.

Unlike almost any other instrument, including even hand drums, the drum set is uniquely the most physical of musical instruments. Your entire being is in action while playing them.

Martial arts teaches you to discipline the body & the mind....the two things that have to work together for a drummer too.

Its a win-win, I'd say.
(maybe sorry for my english)

An interesting thread... I've been into martial arts for years and teach them for about 5 years in the past...

Have always approach my drumming (just really drumming for 1 years...) with the same mind as i do with martial art i.e. the science of body movement. I try to keep a relaxed mind and body for more effeciency, work on economy of movement, work on precision, practicing basics thing and trying to feel them at another level, i keep in mind that the practice of basic things build solid foundation, trying to push my limit farther... and so on.

I often see student that want to make a spinning kick in the air just for the wow factor but doesn't have solid foundation, less flashy but way more important like to be able to throw a basic punch firmly grounded and feeling the power going from his feet-legs-hips-shoulder-arm-and then his fist. ( just an example) The same in drumming appears, student that want to be able to be a double-bass/stick machine gun in 2 weeks but don't try to take the time to examinate the move and do it in a efficient way to sound great.

Drumming and martial have plenty of similarities and the approach to both is personnal to each but i think good teachers always care for real good foundation and are into small details often overlooked but really important...

Both, a lifepath and never ending learn...
 
D

DamoSyzygy

Guest
Im a Wing Chun Kung Fu guy, and I can tell you that this style has certainly helped me to relax, so its benefits toward drumming are huge.
 
I've taken Kenpo for 6 years and don't regret a day of it. It can be done but both hobbies do require large time commitments to excel in. I know I went to about 4 classes a week and studied martial arts at home every day for at least an hour as well.
 

Garvin

Pioneer Member
I'm a highly trained ninja assasin and have experienced many things while juggling my drumming with an undying loyalty and service to my Shogun. At certain times I've had to put off tours in order to participate in silent midnight-raids against enemy villages, and have spilled a fair amount of blood in those. I think the benefits of sticking solely to music would have been that I would not have to see so much death and lose so many close friends in battles in which we were grossly outnumbered.

I've had my fair amount of problems transitioning as well. I can remember this one show that I was playing in Berlin. I had been on a secret assasination assignment for like a month prior, and for some reason mixed up my stick bag with my weapons satchel. Well, long story short, I accidentally knocked my bass player out with a bowstaff and the lead singer ended up with three throwing stars embedded in his back. Not my best gig, but on the bright side, the assasination went very well.
 

Nodiggie

Gold Member
I'm a highly trained ninja assasin and have experienced many things while juggling my drumming with an undying loyalty and service to my Shogun. At certain times I've had to put off tours in order to participate in silent midnight-raids against enemy villages, and have spilled a fair amount of blood in those. I think the benefits of sticking solely to music would have been that I would not have to see so much death and lose so many close friends in battles in which we were grossly outnumbered.

I've had my fair amount of problems transitioning as well. I can remember this one show that I was playing in Berlin. I had been on a secret assasination assignment for like a month prior, and for some reason mixed up my stick bag with my weapons satchel. Well, long story short, I accidentally knocked my bass player out with a bowstaff and the lead singer ended up with three throwing stars embedded in his back. Not my best gig, but on the bright side, the assasination went very well.
hahahahahahah.

There is always one in the bunch....hahah.. Can't wait to hear what Jay Norem has to say...lololol.
 
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drummingman

Gold Member
I'm a highly trained ninja assasin and have experienced many things while juggling my drumming with an undying loyalty and service to my Shogun. At certain times I've had to put off tours in order to participate in silent midnight-raids against enemy villages, and have spilled a fair amount of blood in those. I think the benefits of sticking solely to music would have been that I would not have to see so much death and lose so many close friends in battles in which we were grossly outnumbered.

I've had my fair amount of problems transitioning as well. I can remember this one show that I was playing in Berlin. I had been on a secret assasination assignment for like a month prior, and for some reason mixed up my stick bag with my weapons satchel. Well, long story short, I accidentally knocked my bass player out with a bowstaff and the lead singer ended up with three throwing stars embedded in his back. Not my best gig, but on the bright side, the assasination went very well.
that was good i must say!
as is my left arm tendinitis has flared up again over the last few weeks that im trying to get better. when it feels a bit better im hoping to sign up for martial arts classes.
 

dea

Senior Member
Tsun Jo Wing Chun Gung Fu ( new kung fu ). A modified form of Wing Chun. The rapid fire straight punching and quick simultaneous snap kicking has really helped me control my hands and feet together.
 

oops

Silver Member
I went to a doctor about wrist pain yesterday, and he said I should get a physio and start a work out routine. Not because I'm overweight, or even out of shape (I'm naturally skinny) but because I need to develop my core muscles, which will sort out my posture problems.

Would martial arts be a good way to upper body/core muscle strength? I'll talk to the physio regardless, but just interested in seeing what you guys think.
 

drummingman

Gold Member
well i hope to be starting up at karate in a little over a week. im hoping that the tendinitis in my wrists dont give me any problems. i have always wanted to get back into martial arts for years but have been afraid to because of my wrists. but i hope to give it a try to see how it goes.
 

stabmasterarson

Senior Member
I've only been drumming seriously a couple years but before that I was playing bass in death metal bands while actively training and competing in muay thai kickboxing , brazilian jiu jitsu and mixed martial arts for 10 years. I can say that those arts got me in good shape and I can fight really well, but they don't mesh with drumming in my opinion, especially mma and kickboxing, it's too hard on your hands constantly throwing punches.

Now I'm in a band and stopped all that training even though I love it, because it robs my forearms and calves of stamina and drumming is more important to me now. I am too old to make a living as a fighter, and taking a beating for no$ is not as fun as thrashin the kit!
 
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