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  #1  
Old 01-24-2012, 05:27 PM
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Default Left shin burning intensely

I want to pose this question to you guys. I just got back into drumming seriously again and am starting over with double bass. I am at 16th note 114 bpm at the moment. First goal is 120.

When practicing 16ths after about 8 bars I will get severe burning in my left leg right above the ankle. Is this normal?

I assume that it is the left leg muscle becoming used to playing this stuff again, but curious as to why it is on the front of the leg specifically.

It could also be that the pedal is not very good.

Also, would the fact that I am practicing in heavy winter boots make it hurt worse. Not sure why it would just be the left and not the right unless the left foot just wasn't used to doing this.

Last edited by minorchords; 01-24-2012 at 07:22 PM.
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  #2  
Old 01-24-2012, 05:33 PM
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Default Re: Left shin burning intensely

Are you doing any stretches to warm up? Maybe do some runners stretches or similar.
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Old 01-24-2012, 05:37 PM
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Default Re: Left shin burning intensely

i play singles at up to 220 and don't feel any pain. make sure you aren't moving your leg in some tight motion, it should be very fluid.
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Old 01-24-2012, 05:40 PM
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Default Re: Left shin burning intensely

Do you get this pain at any other time?
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Old 01-24-2012, 05:42 PM
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Default Re: Left shin burning intensely

Yes, stretching comes to mind. And not only as warm-up - do it in-between every now and then, or when you're resting for a while. Listen to your body - there's a time to work out and a time to cut back.

But the shin muscle (tibialis anterior) comes more into play when doing heel-down, much less when playing heel-up. So what technique do you use? If you use heel-up then doing heel-down isn't a bad idea of course, for practice variation. Generally the shin muscle is a muscle people are working on if they need it for heel-down.

When I'm practicing double bass I usually sense some tiredness in my calves (after playing for a while).

Learn to stretch the whole leg (quads, leg biceps, calves, shin muscle) also. All those muscle groups come into play in combination.

If technique is an issue - here's a killer DVD on foot technique: Tim Waterson "Techniques, Motions and Applications for Bass Drum Playing"
http://www.twothreeonetwomusic.com/
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Old 01-24-2012, 05:53 PM
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Default Re: Left shin burning intensely

i never ever stretch at all and still never have pains
i do however do some cycling on a stationary bike before playing, but I doubt that makes any difference
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  #7  
Old 01-24-2012, 06:07 PM
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Default Re: Left shin burning intensely

Good responses. Thank you. Love this place already.

I am doing heel down. The heel comes up a bit on the back though. It did help when I moved my foot up on the pedal a little bit.

I have to be honest and say that the double pedal I am using is not very even. When you hit the left one you can see the bar going across look very awkward where it meets the right pedal.

I must say that through the burning I am surprised that I can still play through it. It makes me think there is something about the pedal mixed with the fact that I have not played 16th notes like this in years that could be contributing as factors. I do feel like I stretch adequately but maybe not.
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Old 01-25-2012, 12:51 AM
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Default Re: Left shin burning intensely

If you are doing heel down, that explains it. You are exercising that muscle in the front of your shin by lifting your toes up. Keep doing heel down and you will have protruding muscles on the front of your shin. That's a good thing. Heel down with a great rebound is a killer exercise. If you can do really fast double pedal heel down, that is really something. You will have complete control, and shins like Popeye's forearms.
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Old 01-25-2012, 05:59 AM
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Default Re: Left shin burning intensely

Burning is due to buildup of lactic acid in your muscles. Play through it, it's normal. If you want to build speed and endurance, you need to train your muscles. All I can say is "no pain, no gain". I play heel down blast beats, 16th note quarters @ 216bpm and yes, the front of my shins have extra musculature built up on them.
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Old 01-25-2012, 06:06 AM
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Default Re: Left shin burning intensely

If you've been playing high hats with a little more of a heel down technique then that's why you're feeling the burn.

Even when I'm trying hard to play hats heel up I play less heel up (if that makes any sense) than I do with my right. Then when I play a few songs that we don't normally do that have a few sections with db accents or end a song with prolonged singles or cool ruffs I get a little muscle burn.

You'll work through it in no time.

I have not. I lack the discipline to fix my bad left foot issues.
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Old 01-25-2012, 06:38 AM
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Default Re: Left shin burning intensely

Quote:
Originally Posted by diosdude View Post
Burning is due to buildup of lactic acid in your muscles. Play through it, it's normal. If you want to build speed and endurance, you need to train your muscles. All I can say is "no pain, no gain". I play heel down blast beats, 16th note quarters @ 216bpm and yes, the front of my shins have extra musculature built up on them.
Your response was the one I was hoping to see. Although at 216 you have doubled me up on speed! haha. It is funny to think about in my beginning stages that that high of bpm can be in my future if I keep this up. Crazy to think about! Damn anything past 180 to me seems unreal.
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Old 01-25-2012, 08:47 AM
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Default Re: Left shin burning intensely

Quote:
Originally Posted by minorchords View Post
Your response was the one I was hoping to see. Although at 216 you have doubled me up on speed! haha. It is funny to think about in my beginning stages that that high of bpm can be in my future if I keep this up. Crazy to think about! Damn anything past 180 to me seems unreal.
Learn heel-toe - it will take a few months to get the hang of the motions until it starts feeling effortlessly - and then (well that's my experience at least) 180 will be the speed you'll land at in "auto pilot" mode with actually almost not working physically. I find it hard to play heel-toe/doubles slower than 180.

But those 216 bpm with heel-down is quite an achievement! I can go faster than that with singles, but heel-up only. Never pushed myself with heel-down...

PS: There's a "good" pain (= burn) and a "bad" pain (medical condition, wrong technique)... Try developing a sense of where the pain comes from to determine the problem. If it's burn then don't worry. If it's another pain - stop!
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  #13  
Old 01-25-2012, 02:08 PM
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Default Re: Left shin burning intensely

stretch, hydrate, getchyo greens...seriously! tap your left foot throughout the day. greatest thing about being a drummer is you don't even have to be near your instrument to practice!!!
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  #14  
Old 01-25-2012, 02:48 PM
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Default Re: Left shin burning intensely

Adjust your throne. It could be that simple. I'm guessing you are sitting too low
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Old 01-25-2012, 03:03 PM
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Default Re: Left shin burning intensely

Welcome to the forum. What part of Virgina are you from?

Also if you are playing heel down, you will feel it a bit more. Your shin is not accustomed to stretching that much in everyday life. Take it easy and build endurance a bit at a time. Think about doing slower tempos for longer periods of time.

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  #16  
Old 01-25-2012, 03:41 PM
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Default Re: Left shin burning intensely

Last week I was working on a drum cover (U2's - Beautiful Day). The song requires a constant 1/8 (I think that's how it's measured) triplet throughout most of the song on BD. I also found out that when it was recorded in the studio, the band looped a recording of the bass drum on the album track. But anyways...I found that it was easier for my right foot to play this constant beat when my left foot also bounced on the HH. Not exactly beat for beat, but my left heel was often up, while the toes constantly pressed onto the HH pedal.

In the evening after my 1st day of practicing this song, I woke up in the middle of the night with an excruciating cramp in my left shin. I got this same cramp 2 years ago on my right shin when I returned back to drumming after decades of not playing. Like the others have recommended, it takes a little time to get used to.

I usually do heel-toe for quick doubles/triples and do get a burn after intense footwork. Here is a cool video for stretching the shin muscles I do a few times a week before practicing or in the morning.

Pay attention to her shins and don't get distracted...

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=pj2r4VtyRD4
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  #17  
Old 01-25-2012, 03:46 PM
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Default Re: Left shin burning intensely

Hard not to get distracted, haha...

But there's a far easier way of stretching. Sitting at the PC or at a table? Just flex your lower leg (one leg at a time) so the foot is about below your hip, tip your foot onto the floor with your big toe, then push your ankle forward - same stretching effect but no need to have contact with the floor. You can do this while being in a restaurant, at work, watching TV... pretty much everywhere. No aerobics clothing needed...

Stretch for a while, release the tension, then switch foot and repeat. Several times total will do.
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