You and your practice regimen, come clean


"Uncle Larry"
This thread is all about practice. How often, the up/down cycles, what is practiced, why it's practiced, how hard you drive yourself at practice....everything you want to talk about....about practice.

Everyone has their own personal favorite way of practicing. Some people don't practice at all. Arguably, one of the most influential drummers of our time, Ringo, if I recall correctly, doesn't practice. I wonder if Levon Helm practiced drums.

I get personal satisfaction from practice. I go in cycles. I'm inconsistent as hell but when I do practice, I practice deeply not broadly. I work one thing as long as I can. I don't drive myself as hard as I could, that's for sure. I mainly practice the mechanics of playing and how to play not what to play. I decide what I feel like working on. Today it was corpus collosum strengthening, but for the last 3 weeks, I haven't had the urge to practice at all, bad me.

Matt Bo Eder

I still do about an hour a day on a pad making sure I can still play. I drill ally of basics. If I have more time I open a book and read stuff, because that's a good thing to maintain.


Platinum Member
This is my first week without training wheels.

I've been drumming for around 2.5 years now, and have taken lessons until this week.

While taking lessons, I made sure that I got onto the kit at least once to practise the 'take home' from the previous lesson. I always wanted to go into the next lesson a step ahead from where I'd been the previous week. As you might expect, those steps got smaller and at the same time, more difficult as I progressed.

At the same time, the last 8 months or so have seen my band go from getting together every other week to struggle to remember what we'd been learning to getting together every week and adding new songs at (for us) quite a rate. And that has meant much more time learning songs.

All of which has meant less time practising for the sake of practising, and increasing time learning songs. I try and spend at least an hour on the kit ahead of each band sesh, working on what we've got lined up to rehearse. A prehearsal if you will!

It may sound odd, but my next Thing will be to learn the rudiments properly. Of course I've learnt the most rudimentary rudiments, like single stroke and double stroke rolls and the paradiddle, but I think the time is right for me to work more on my vocabulary.


Platinum Member
I make myself do 20 minutes rudiments on the pad daily.
Kit time is about 2 - 3 times per week, maybe 1 hour each. Kit time is playing beats to a metronome, or working rudiments on the kit, or playing along to a fave song. Then there is 3 hr band rehearsal. I wish I could do more.

Levon Helm? ...did not have time to practice, for they toured so much when the Band was active up to 1975. I'm not sure about his later years. I heard Buddy or Bonzo never practiced either, but I would guess Neil Peart does.


Silver Member
I'm sort of up and down with my practicing. Some days I'll practice for 3 hours. Some days I'll practice for 30 minutes and do nothing productive. I guess some of the time I just don't feel like practicing. Maybe the main reason for that is because I'm not part of any band right now. In school, I was in the jazz band, percussion ensemble, concert band, and pep band, but now that school is out I have nowhere to play except in my basement alone :(

Usually my practice consists of me warming up/improvising for the first 15 minutes. Then I work on rudiments and such for about 45 min. to an hour. Then I play along to music (specifically the Tommy Igoe groove essentials tracks and pep band songs). After that, I improvise for another 30 minutes or so.

I'm probably not as productive as I could be during practice, but I probably get enough time in weekly.

Matt Bo Eder

I haven't done pad work in ages. I like practicing on a real snare drum. Blessings counted.
I try to play the real thing as much as I can, but my weird work hours dictate the pad for the early morning and late evening hours. My neighbors are cool with hearing drums from 10am to 8pm most days, so I try not to aggravate them too much ;) So in between 10 and 8, yeah, I'm on the actual drums.

keep it simple

Platinum Member
Pretty much 100% of my "practising" is actually rehearsal with other musicians. Very occasionally, I'll have to try something new & take a little time to nail it down. Upshot is, I don't practice, & it really really shows in my lack of facility.

Matt Bo Eder

Pretty much 100% of my "practising" is actually rehearsal with other musicians. Very occasionally, I'll have to try something new & take a little time to nail it down. Upshot is, I don't practice, & it really really shows in my lack of facility.
But that's ok. You have wind chimes ;)


Senior Member
Time to confess, I practice a lot! The company which I worked for the last 15 years went bankrupt 6 months ago, and I still haven't found a new job, so I have plenty of time. (Well, I have a wife, two small children, an old house, a couple of old motorcycles and a sailing boat to take care of, but still I have some spare time.) About the same time as I lost my job I started in a rock band with friends I haven't played with the last 25 years and it's great, some of them make a living playing their instruments so they are quite good. It is very inspiring. And challenging.
I have joined Bill Bachman's Drum Workout, and I start my daily practice with this to get my hands in shape 20-30 min, then I work on some endurance builders for the feet, maybe 5 min. Then some Stick Control, 15 min, and then a finish with coordination, right now I'm using "Funky Primer". And it's fun like never before. I hope this will last, then I will be a great drummer by the time I turn 100 :)


Platinum Member
Confession time. I dont practice at all, I just play. I play through the band set list at home and if a new idea comes to me I go with it and find out if it works for the song. New songs I listen to till I know the structure and the vocals and then play along to it till I nail it, but I am always looking to refine my part if It fits with the song.

I dont own a practice pad, never liked them, and I cant see the point as I have an Ekit for quiet(ish) practice and an accoustic kit for everything else.


Platinum Member
I love to practice today as much as I did when I started. Don't have the time like I used to but I generally manage 30-45 minutes / 5-6 days per week.

Haven't owned a pad in probably 20 years, so zero time goes into that.

I generally have two books going. One focuses on coordination and another focuses on rudimental solos which are orchestrated on the set. One page / concept in each book can last me a month or even more, depending when I feel like I've extracted from it what I want.

Flow / musicality / time are applied to both books. Almost everything is worked on with a click.

30-45 minutes isn't much so I try to make the most of it.

Jeff Almeyda

Senior Consultant
I practice on the pad approx an hour a day. Since working with Bill Bachman after my injury my technique is really coming along.

Kit time ranges from 0-3 hrs. Much more on weekends.

Total hrs/week about 10-15 hrs weekly.

Kit time is spent playing with music and working on specific issues required for the gigs I'm doing. At age 48, I have to keep on top of the double bass as well or it all goes south quickly. Books include: Working the Inner clock by Phil Maturano and Extreme Interdependence by Marco Minneman.

A note about practice pads. They will show you things that the snare won't. You can hear variances in the stick sound due to technique issues much more easily. A half-ass sounding roll on a pad will sound decent on a snare. A great roll on a pad sounds perfect on a snare.


Platinum Member
I practise most days, geography and time permitting, sometimes just for a few minutes, sometimes for hours, cumulatively: I might do 40 minutes or so, have a cup of tea and a quick DW catch-up, then play again for another 40 minutes, rinse and repeat.

I love practising, and I rarely have to make myself do something because I generally want to do it. I'll usually pick one or two things to work on, either because I'm good (relatively!) at them and it's nice to get better at them, or because I'm not good at them and it's nice to get better at them.

I hate using a pad so I don't. I'm lucky that we don't have any close neighbours so I can use my whole kit whenever I like - when Mr Madge is away, I have been known to play my drums in the middle of the night if I can't sleep. When our daughters are home, I try to be considerate and I don't play before 11 a.m., but I don't know why I bother because it takes a damn sight more than that to wake them up!


Gold Member
I am in 3 bands (drummer in 2 guitarist in 1) so between rehearsals and gigs I play the drums at least 5 days a week. That being said, the only time I "practice" is when working out parts for new songs. Any difficult sections, transitions or fills get some attention before rehearsal, but that's about all I have time for. I wish I had more time to take lessons and actually learn how to play the drums but between bands work and family that is an impossibility.


Platinum Member
All dependent on gig schedule, if I'm all over the country with the band I practice less usally because I'm knackered from doing the 9-5 as well.

Majority of the practice I do is on a mesh head drum in front of the telly, length of time is dependent on how quickly the missus gets annoyed with it. I just tend to do my rudiments, not really going full out but just to get my hands, wrists and arms flowing.

I do spend the odd hour at my unit on a full kit but I find air drumming with a pair of sticks is just as good, plus you hear the sound of the stick in your hand which is good for technique.


Gold Member
I have been getting super lazy in practicing.. i used to use the pad at work for about a hour a day.. then at home play for a few hours a night..

Lately i do 1 or 2 drumeo lessons (love Pat Petrillos warmup routine) Then i play along with songs off youtube for 1-2 hours every night. so 3-4 hours a night...

I mainly work on whatever takes me that night.. right now it has been speed around the kit..


Senior Member
Try to get in about 2 hours daily. Due to having a new baby and a wife who can't stand the sound of drums (imagine that!) my practice routine is essentially composed of practice pad + dw practice pad kit. I get on a real kit about 1-2 times per week.

Lots of my daily routine is on rudiments (stick control + Wilcoxon solos + one of the PAS rudiments) , plus I try to refine my reading skills (Bellson's Modern Reading Text is great) and I will have one major focus area for the day where I spend at least 30 minutes.

I try to finish off by practicing to songs that are part of my jamming band's set list.