stupid leg!!!

evolving_machine

Silver Member
It happens to me once in a while when I am playing just too much. I have to resist messing with my peddles and bass drum heads, and thrown height. I really do not know or understand what it is. I can only attribute it to just plain over worked leg under certain conditions where I am not strong enough to resist fatigue.

Personally I am glad others have the same condition. It makes me feel like I belong to the group of individuals called "drummers."
 

Odd-Arne Oseberg

Platinum Member
I pretty much play allday and set myself up for that.

This means I warm up and think about recovery.

No matter if I'm stiff and short warm-up does wonders. It's nothing special. Set metronome to 50 bpm and then play 16th notes for 50 counts heel down, repeat heel up and then shake loose. Then the muscles are ready to go to work again.

I run, walk or stretch in the evenings and this helps me recover for the next day.

There's no real downtime, but taking a break one day a week isn't a bad idea.

If I run out of juice a quality protein shake takes care of that.
 

single-ply

Senior Member
You know, it's probably nothing or something minor, but it might be a good idea to go see your doc and tell him what you're experiencing. He might do a few tests. No downside except the loss of a few bucks and might ease your mind.

A buddy of mine just had a heart attack yesterday, so better safe than sorry! By the way, he'll be fine
 

Highway Child

Senior Member
When tiredness / nervousness during a gig affects my BD doubles I find it helpful to make a conscious effort to re-position my foot. I play heel-up most of the time and finding a new "sweet spot" on the footboard does the trick. I usually pull my foot further back as this shortens the distance I need to control for a double stroke. I guess if you use a high spring tension this may not work - my springs are fairly loose.
 

rotherdrummer

Senior Member
yeah. for me, it's definitely not confidence, because this happens at home and i'm not nervous of myself! lol. but yeah, definitely seems to be tension and fatigue related. i'm not the healthiest guy tbh. i sit behind a desk for 8 hours a day and drive (or ride... motorbike) there and back

....but then again you see some huge unfit guys who are awesome drummers. so i have no idea?!!!?? :)
 

single-ply

Senior Member
I've notice the same general kind of thing with my leg, but maybe not to the degree you are experiencing it.

What I've noticed is that I tend to carry a lot of unneeded tension in my leg. This of course increases when I'm nervous about a performance. When I remember to relax, (I actually have to tell this to myself sometimes, lol) things get magically better.

I also lowered my throne height just a bit to bet my thighs a little more parallel to the floor. Seems to help.

Actually, my bigger problem is with my left wrist, like if I'm playing a fast shuffle. Sometimes it just says "not going to do it today. Sorry for the inconvenience."

It all really comes down to three things: Preparedness, confidence, and absence of tension.
 

rotherdrummer

Senior Member
that's another great point mrfingers! i have noticed in the past that switching to a different pedal sometimes makes me play better, even if my regular pedal is setup correctly! it's almost like my leg enjoys adjusting to a different feel and responds better

my practice routine isn't great at the moment tbh. i'm at work all day, then when i come home i spend time getting something to eat and looking after my little boy. it's generally 21:30 to 22:00 by the time i get on the kit, and i play until i'm ready for bed (usually for 90 minutes or so). i only have 7 days to learn a number of songs for next band rehearsal, so as much as i'd love to recoup, i can't really afford to not practice! that's why it's a catch 22

at the moment, the beat that's bugging me is the intro in dr feelgood by motley crue. it's quite a nice rock beat, nothing mega complicated, but it's the 2 kicks in quick succession which are screwing with me. i know for a fact that if i don't play drums for a week or 2, this beat is easy for me to play. but when i've been practicing, i find it really tricky to play it smooth. it's kind of like my leg just won't respond correctly. i'm not sure if the signals are getting lost in my hip, knee, or ankle. it's kinda hard to tell. all i know is, the beat sounds really sloppy when i've been practicing a lot :(

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=bHP6U5vQ3mU
 

mrfingers

Senior Member
Have you tried switching to a different pedal and then back? Sometimes your pedal adjustments slip over time. A different pedal forces you to make the adjustments to pedal and technique and may point out the problem. Then returning to your original, "good" pedal you may feel the difference and you can make the adjustments. Could be spring tension(too loose/ tight?), footboard height(causing your leg to have to lift higher than usual) or the weight of the beater that has a bearing on the problem.
 
Actually, I had a similar issue a decade ago with my left hamstrings during long-distance running. As I recall, I couldn't control them starting at some point during each run. Back then, no doc could figure it out, but somehow I have managed to solve the issue over the years. It seems that centering the leg bone within the hip capsule was one key adjustment for me.

I'm sure, I would have recovered way faster, if I had read this book back then (or had similar guidance):
https://www.amazon.com/Becoming-Supple-Leopard-2nd-Performance/dp/1628600837/

Also, some effects you are describing can be explained by supercompensation:
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Supercompensation
 

BruceW

Senior Member
that is a good point actually. perhaps it might be worth just practicing the fills and any little stops/starts and time changes but leaving the kicks out

i might just give that a go next time
Do this, or maybe even play along with your right foot on the floor, not on the actual pedal. Maybe a little of that will vary things enough to get the muscles cooperating. A different feedback....

Sometimes at our band practices, when the guitar players are trying to work something out and I'm not playing, I tend to take my feet off the pedals and play along, feet on the floor, hands on my legs, trying to keep the learning process going for me while not messing with them. Other times there are quiet parts of songs we play where there aren't drum parts, and again, I'll take my feet off the pedals to play along, to get the feel.

I'm often playing the kick parts to music on the floor while I'm at work. Was doing so just now as I read this thread, which got me to thinking that might work, too...

Good luck.
 

Otto

Platinum Member
I find things like that happen to me when I shift how I am thinking about the pattern...such as switching from playing each note distinctly to thinking about the double as 'a double'...or even switching to "not thinking about it".

A great exercise is to practice the same pattern but change how you think about it...record it...then see how it effects the end resulting sound.

I find far more variability in subtle 'mental frame' changes than I thought I would.
 

rotherdrummer

Senior Member
that is a good point actually. perhaps it might be worth just practicing the fills and any little stops/starts and time changes but leaving the kicks out

i might just give that a go next time
 

rotherdrummer

Senior Member
that's exactly it porkpieguy. nothing at all to do with ability, it's just a lack of control which creeps in

for me, it's a slightly different scenario:- say my band agrees to learn a new song for next rehearsal, i have 7 days to nail it. so obviously i need to practice (after work) in order to learn the song. sounds simple, but it's a catch 22 because although i become more familiar with the song as the week goes on, my leg starts playing up before next band rehearsal

it's really strange. i know if i put the sticks down and forget about drumming for a week or so, when i come back i'm completely refreshed and fully able to complete the strokes again

very very weird and frustrating!!!
 

PorkPieGuy

Platinum Member
Yes! I AM WITH YOU!

I'll tell you where this happens to me...

The Sundays that I play drums, I have to play a total of four sets between 7:30am and 11:40am (one practice run-thru and three morning services). They are the same four songs each time, but I swear I get worse each service, in particular when we have to play this song (FFWD to :30 into the song and you can hear the kick drum pattern I have to play) :

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=xa0EIFFc6xk



There are a couple of things working against me here:

First, the tempo of the song for doing his particular pattern is weird for me to play on the kick drum. It's too slow to do a fast double kick by doing the sliding-foot method on the pedal because then it sounds rushed; however, the tempo is too fast to just play it "straight" consistently for me. In other words, I have no problem playing it faster, and I have no problem playing it slower. It's just at that particular tempo, it's difficult for me. It's almost like having to sing a note right between your chest voice and falsetto (some of you will know that this means). Keep in mind that we play with a click track and multi-tracks running through the PA as well, so we can't adjust the tempo. I can manage it, but just for a little while.

Here's where I'm feeling what the OP is stating - At the 7:20am practice, I can nail it every time; however as time moves on throughout the morning, I feel myself getting worse and worse. Oh, I have the ability to do it because I did it perfectly just a little while earlier, but my leg gets (how you say) "noodle'y" and it's pretty much shot by third service. Man, it's soooo frustrating. The other guys that play drums experience this too.

I'm glad I'm not the only one! Thanks for sharing this.
 

WalterKohn

Senior Member
this has nothing to do with independence. see my previous post
I didn't see that post. Well if your claiming it is not independence it could still be timing issue.

If you never learned how to properly insert 16th notes before or after an 8th note on the bass drum this will happen. Not saying this is definitely the issue but I would recommend to at least try to count it out loud while playing and to see if that helps.

If that does not help maybe adjust the height of your throne, angle of which your foot is on the pedal board, check to make sure your bass drum is actually level. Depending on the beater you use, if your bass drum isn't level and your beater and foot angle is not the most efficient your issues can happen. I have had these issues before and this is what I did to rectify.

If none of those help I would check out trigger point therapy for your quads, calves, and hips. Also if stretch your hamstrings before you play.
 

rotherdrummer

Senior Member
This happens to me when I try to learn a new pattern on the bass drum. Has a lot to do with limb independence. Your best bet is to start suppppper slow and actually count out loud the bass drum hits. I believe the bass drum on "Sweet Home Alabama" is "ah 1 +" and then the snare on "2" then the bass drum is "ah 3 +" and then snare on "4" then repeat. Usually the 16th notes before or after the bass drum can be tough on new licks. Again just take it slow and count it out loud.

Hope this helps.
this has nothing to do with independence. see my previous post
 

WalterKohn

Senior Member
This happens to me when I try to learn a new pattern on the bass drum. Has a lot to do with limb independence. Your best bet is to start suppppper slow and actually count out loud the bass drum hits. I believe the bass drum on "Sweet Home Alabama" is "ah 1 +" and then the snare on "2" then the bass drum is "ah 3 +" and then snare on "4" then repeat. Usually the 16th notes before or after the bass drum can be tough on new licks. Again just take it slow and count it out loud.

Hope this helps.
 
M

Matt Bo Eder

Guest
Perhaps stretching out before you start to play will help as well? Or did somebody already say that?

I admit, when I was a kid, I'd just wake up, and go over to the drums and start playing for hours on some days. As I get older, it becomes more important to stretch out and warm up so I can continue to keep playing.
 
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