playing shoes

haroldo_psf

Senior Member
I realize it's best to use thin sole shoes to play the bass drum. I don't have any, so I was going to get some plain ol' A-stars.

I was wondering about these new toe shoes that came up recently ( www.vibramfivefingers.com )... Some have very thin soles as well.

Do you think those would be good? Anyone has them?
 

Wick

Senior Member
I use converse, they have nice leverage since I just play flat-footed most of the time.

I don't really think the shoe really makes much of a difference, unless you're using some iron toed boot or something. And if you're looking for more skill in playing the bass drum, the secret isn't in the shoe :p
 

alparrott

Platinum Member
I realize it's best to use thin sole shoes to play the bass drum.
What shoes to wear (or even whether to wear any) is so individual. Perhaps it's what's best for you, or someone whose opinion you respect greatly told you that he believe this is the best...? Anyways...

I was wondering about these new toe shoes that came up recently ( www.vibramfivefingers.com )... Some have very thin soles as well.

Do you think those would be good? Anyone has them?
I have found that comfort of fit and ease of movement are MUCH more important to good playing than thickness of sole or anything else to do with the construction of a shoe.

For most of last year I wore combat boots to play the drums. They were well broken in, easy to move my feet in, and had an inch-deep lug sole. No issues, I was able to do doubles and everything. Currently my practice shoes in my drum room are a $25 pair of Airwalk slipons. Big old rubber sole on that too. Still no issues.

By all means, try them out if you like, but don't blow money saying "this will make me a better player because thin soles are best".... because neither statement is necessarily true.
 

jkevn

Senior Member
+1 for the Converse All-Stars. You may not play better....but you WILL jump higher and run much faster.....
 

Aeolian

Platinum Member
After reading a bunch of threads here, I ended up with some Adidas Samba indoor soccer shoes. Great for playing, driving, or anything else where you want a very tactile feel under your foot.

On another forum a bunch of folks have been raving about running in those Vibram things. Since I grew up in Hawaii and ran around barefoot all the time, including distance running in HS track and cross country while legitimately barefoot, I can understand where they are coming from. If you don't spend your life running around with the bottoms of your feet exposed to lava rock, then some layer of protection makes sense. But running barefoot (either really barefoot like we did, or with these things on your feet) forces you up onto the balls of your feet and keeps you from pounding your heel into the ground. With the associated plantar faceitis and knee problems.

You would get a better feel for the pedal, just as the sock and barefoot players do, while still being able to walk on hot asphalt across a parking lot or over rough stones. But as folks have mentioned, it won't give you Bonham's or Chambers' foot instantly.
 

BradGunnerSGT

Silver Member
After reading a bunch of threads here, I ended up with some Adidas Samba indoor soccer shoes. Great for playing, driving, or anything else where you want a very tactile feel under your foot.

On another forum a bunch of folks have been raving about running in those Vibram things. Since I grew up in Hawaii and ran around barefoot all the time, including distance running in HS track and cross country while legitimately barefoot, I can understand where they are coming from. If you don't spend your life running around with the bottoms of your feet exposed to lava rock, then some layer of protection makes sense. But running barefoot (either really barefoot like we did, or with these things on your feet) forces you up onto the balls of your feet and keeps you from pounding your heel into the ground. With the associated plantar faceitis and knee problems.

You would get a better feel for the pedal, just as the sock and barefoot players do, while still being able to walk on hot asphalt across a parking lot or over rough stones. But as folks have mentioned, it won't give you Bonham's or Chambers' foot instantly.
That's funny, I was just about to suggest indoor soccer style shoes. i usually wear a pair of slip-on American Eagle shoes that are styled like indoor soccer shoes (thin soles, minimal yet effective tread pattern) and they are perfect for drumming.
 

synergy

Senior Member
those vibrams are a pretty expensive way of getting less sole!

Especially when you can take off your shoes and have no sole- Any number of athletic makers make thin soled shoes- Addidas and Puma are 2 that imediately spring to mind

I have the opposite issue- I require padding on the top of my foot after playing a gig on someone else's kit and his hard plastic beater pounded my foot black and blue to the point I almost broke bones.

Even now a year or so later- any hard hit to the top of the foot will result in unequally proportioned bruise then the hit actually was.
 

GunnerUK

Junior Member
If you were a guitarist, you wouldn't play in gloves would you.

Likewise a drummer needs to feel the instrument. Forget the shoes and play in socks or barefoot. Get used to that and you'll never have to worry about what shoes to buy for drumming ever again.
 

Red Menace

Platinum Member
If you were a guitarist, you wouldn't play in gloves would you.

Likewise a drummer needs to feel the instrument. Forget the shoes and play in socks or barefoot. Get used to that and you'll never have to worry about what shoes to buy for drumming ever again.
Weak analogy there. A drummer also uses their hands to play and some do play in gloves. Playing guitar, piano ect calls for a lot more fine motor skills in the fingers than drumming does.

I prefer Chuck Taylors. I can still feel the pedal but I'm not jamming my bare feet on a hard aluminum surface.
 

kgk1958

Junior Member
I own the Vibram Five Finger shoes and I play in them. They are the next best thing to bare feet and you can walk around a dimly lit stage or backstage area without worrying about stepping on or in something unpleasant.
 

giffo

Junior Member
I play in socks most of the time, sometimes two pairs.
For extra grip I keep a pair of these in my accessory box, the Skeetex water shoe.
They're niced and bendy and very light weight.
UK prices around £12 and they come in several colours too....
 

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Frost

Silver Member
I usually play with socks or vans on

sometimes just barefoot at home
I often play barefoot.

It used to be really common at a point, now it seems to be dying out a lot. There are still a couple of notable drummers who still drum barefoot.
 
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