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Old 04-18-2018, 08:54 PM
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Default Can't consistently hit max bpms

I'm having a weird problem... my practice-pad sessions always start out the same way. Slow gradual warm up with singles starting at 150bpm with +5bpm every 30 seconds (until I top out), followed by forearm stretches, and then 5 minutes of straight singles at my last recorded max +1 bpm. If I do that cleanly without fatigue, I record that as my new max. If I don't, I don't bump up my max and try again next session.

I'll be doing this for days/weeks, and then all of a sudden, I can't even come close to my max. For the last few sessions for example, I can barely crack 184 and it still doesn't feel loose to me.

Has anyone else found this? It's happened to be twice before.. and each time, I reset and find my new 'lower' max, and then keep building up (and usually get to a new max).

Some obvious reasons could be fatigue... I gig ~5x/week, so that's an obvious one, but even after a 2 day break this is happening. Is there anything else you guys do in your warmup that helps you loosen up and hit your speeds consistently?
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Old 04-18-2018, 09:24 PM
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Default Re: Can't consistently hit max bpms

sounds to me like you need to spend more time at each speed, and according to Stanton Moore, completely stop each BPM before going on tno the next faster speed.
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Old 04-18-2018, 09:33 PM
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Default Re: Can't consistently hit max bpms

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sounds to me like you need to spend more time at each speed, and according to Stanton Moore, completely stop each BPM before going on tno the next faster speed.
Hmm... I thought 5 minutes at a given bpm was a long time? But as for the stopping, I am doing that. The warmup is the only thing that progresses from slow -> fast, and that's just to get my limbs moving. After that and my stretches, I'm starting at the max bpm +1 from dead-stop, and no tempo change for the full 5 minutes.

Are folks spending longer at the max bpm in general?
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Old 04-18-2018, 10:57 PM
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Default Re: Can't consistently hit max bpms

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Are folks spending longer at the max bpm in general?
Never done it, also never warmed up for practicing or gigs.
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Old 04-18-2018, 11:07 PM
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Default Re: Can't consistently hit max bpms

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Originally Posted by jdhardrummer View Post

Some obvious reasons could be fatigue... I gig ~5x/week, so that's an obvious one, but even after a 2 day break this is happening.
2 week break.




.
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Old 04-19-2018, 12:19 AM
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Default Re: Can't consistently hit max bpms

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Hmm... I thought 5 minutes at a given bpm was a long time? But as for the stopping, I am doing that. The warmup is the only thing that progresses from slow -> fast, and that's just to get my limbs moving. After that and my stretches, I'm starting at the max bpm +1 from dead-stop, and no tempo change for the full 5 minutes.

Are folks spending longer at the max bpm in general?
Sorry I missed the 5 minute part. should be OK.
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Old 04-19-2018, 05:31 AM
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Default Re: Can't consistently hit max bpms

Could be fatigue, could be your muscles wanting a break.

Sometimes after a few days or even a week off I come back faster than before.even if your endurance suffers a bit after a break, it comes back very fast. Guys who hit the gym don't work out the same muscle group 2 days in a row.. that is essentially what you are doing.

work on slow stuff for a bit, sticking patterns, change it up. work out the feet/legs. I have had this happen myself a few times it is totally normal.


I also find practicing for 5 minutes clean at a speed is much more beneficial than short little bursts at "MAX" Your title was misleading to me because I can't play my "max" for 5 minutes. I'd rather practice for 5-10 minutes straight at 70-80% of my max and that helps increase my top speeds.

I play really fast extreme metal stuff full of blasts. I warm up for a long time before gigs.. i find the trick to "warming up" is staying lower, like 50-70 for a long period of time to not gas my muscles but get the wrists and fingers working. Jumping in too high i'll never get to my top areas and feel pretty tight.

but ya, take a week or 2 off the pad.. play some grooves.
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Old 04-19-2018, 06:42 PM
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Default Re: Can't consistently hit max bpms

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Originally Posted by beyondbetrayal View Post
Could be fatigue, could be your muscles wanting a break.

Sometimes after a few days or even a week off I come back faster than before.even if your endurance suffers a bit after a break, it comes back very fast. Guys who hit the gym don't work out the same muscle group 2 days in a row.. that is essentially what you are doing.

work on slow stuff for a bit, sticking patterns, change it up. work out the feet/legs. I have had this happen myself a few times it is totally normal.
Good idea... sounds like changing it up is definitely one thing I can do. Taking a break for 2 weeks just isn't gonna happen though, I'm a working dude so that means no rent if I take that long off :)

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I play really fast extreme metal stuff full of blasts. I warm up for a long time before gigs.. i find the trick to "warming up" is staying lower, like 50-70 for a long period of time to not gas my muscles but get the wrists and fingers working. Jumping in too high i'll never get to my top areas and feel pretty tight.

but ya, take a week or 2 off the pad.. play some grooves.
Just for fun, can you share a rough idea of your pre-gig warmup? I always struggle in how to warmup because realistically, I can't warmup right before the set... wardrobe, stage shit, random stuff. Right now I'm usually doing ~10 minutes of pad work about 2 hours from set-start, but not convinced I can't improve my warmup routine in general.
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Old 04-19-2018, 08:10 PM
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Default Re: Can't consistently hit max bpms

Don't worry. It's normal. Marathon runners can't consistently hit their same finish time. Weight lifters can't consistently lift their max weight. You can't type the same number of words on a consistent basis. You don't always get the same mpg when driving your car everyday. Etc., Etc., Etc. AND, speed ain't everything. Nuance, and finesse are as critical if not more so than speed when drumming. For the life of me I don't understand the necessity of metal band members trying to play so fast that it sounds like they're competing to see who finishes the "song" first. Then again most metal bands sound like crowded video arcades with a 747 jet engine running. And it's not just the drummers. Most guitarists try to impress with their ability to play scales and arpeggios faster than sin, rather than working a melody. Slow down and work on drumming not jackhammering.
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Old 04-20-2018, 02:13 AM
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Default Re: Can't consistently hit max bpms

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AND, speed ain't everything. Nuance, and finesse are as critical if not more so than speed when drumming. For the life of me I don't understand the necessity of metal band members trying to play so fast that it sounds like they're competing to see who finishes the "song" first.
I have a different view on this. I don't work on speed so I can be the fastest out the gate. For me, it's been proven that upping my max bpms over time has made a given lower bpm far much more consistent and cleaner. Also, my endurance at a given lower bpm is drastically improved by upping my max, which is important when I'm constantly doing 3 hour sets multiple times a week.

I recall it in a Benny Greb video, but he emphasizes the importance of over-practicing to free up headspace. If you have to think too much about a rudiment/fill etc, you will definitely screw it up when it comes to a gig where there are 1000 other factors. Same thing with bpms... if you can do rudiments cleaner at a higher bpm, executing them at lower bpms with the gig realities becomes much easier.

That's my aim with building up speed...
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Old 04-20-2018, 05:45 PM
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Default Re: Can't consistently hit max bpms

2 weeks off was just a comment in regards to 2 days off. However, preparing for your gig, doing the gig and leave it at that for a while can be a good thing. Practice mentally or just do something else altogether when not doing "work."
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Old 04-20-2018, 08:49 PM
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Default Re: Can't consistently hit max bpms

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Originally Posted by jdhardrummer View Post
I have a different view on this. I don't work on speed so I can be the fastest out the gate. For me, it's been proven that upping my max bpms over time has made a given lower bpm far much more consistent and cleaner. Also, my endurance at a given lower bpm is drastically improved by upping my max, which is important when I'm constantly doing 3 hour sets multiple times a week.

I recall it in a Benny Greb video, but he emphasizes the importance of over-practicing to free up headspace. If you have to think too much about a rudiment/fill etc, you will definitely screw it up when it comes to a gig where there are 1000 other factors. Same thing with bpms... if you can do rudiments cleaner at a higher bpm, executing them at lower bpms with the gig realities becomes much easier.

That's my aim with building up speed...
Good point about over-practicing to ensure that you donít screw up under pressure or from distractions.

Something I like to do instead of focusing solely on speed and form is to add in extra things to do.

1. I like to practice the first page of Stick Control very slowly, with every note alternating between hands and feet, so the first exercise is right hand, right foot, left hand, left foot.

2. When that gets boring, instead of speeding up, sometimes I sing/speak a ďtaĒ or ďkaĒ between each note.

3. Sometimes I like to play this kind of exercise to music with poor tempo consistency, to improve my listening skills.

4. ?? Iím open to suggestions to complicate the basic exercise besides speeding up
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Old 04-21-2018, 06:07 AM
beyondbetrayal beyondbetrayal is offline
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Default Re: Can't consistently hit max bpms

As far as warming up it will change drasticly depending on if there is a backstage at the venue where I can sit in a privet room with a metronome, or be at our merch table or sitting in the bar watching a band before us.

Usually I try and get about 15 minutes in but if I have the opportunity I go a bit longer.. IF I go longer I make a point of playing slower... This isn't to try and hit my max, it's to "Warm up"

I do alot of singles, doubles, tripples, para diddles, paradiddle diddles, and other rudiments that flip so I can get some accents on both hand and left hand lead. ( my left is my weaker side)

Once again, if i start out trying to rip, i'll get tired and gas out. Same thing happens when I hit the stage without a warmup and have to dive into a song at 230 BPM with blast beats.

Look at a UFC fighter / Boxer.. They warm up with pads for a LONG time before a fight, much longer than the fight, but less intense. Hockey players warm up a ton as well. and what do they all do STRETCH!!!!
I find stretching is more beneficial than warming up.. I like to stretch my legs, back and hands/arms... pressing my fingers and palms together in front of me while moving moving my hands straight down. stretching forearms etc.

I always found by the end of the set before I did all this stuff I was really starting to hit my happy place and then it was over. Now I start there. It DOES look silly doing a few lunges and stretches in a bar sometimes, but when I go on stage and play that stuff I assume people get it.

Also, I agree. I practice fast to get faster, but then I try and play slower. It's nice to have speed as a tool and not need it, rather than need it and not have it. But practicing slow and VERY slow is a tool too.. If all you do is rip, it's hard to play slow. Plus learning to groove is not done at high speeds.
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Old 04-21-2018, 09:53 PM
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Default Re: Can't consistently hit max bpms

What hand technique are you using at high speeds? That technique should not only facilitate speed, but also help you play relaxed.

Also (just my opinion) FIVE minutes at your max speed is insanity.
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Old 04-21-2018, 11:06 PM
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Default Re: Can't consistently hit max bpms

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What hand technique are you using at high speeds? That technique should not only facilitate speed, but also help you play relaxed.

Also (just my opinion) FIVE minutes at your max speed is insanity.
Itís not really his max speed. Itís his max speed that he can do for 5 minutes. Heís only doing 16th notes at about 184 bpm. Thatís actually only moderately fast. Iím pretty sure I could do that fairly easily, without a warmup.
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Old 04-24-2018, 08:42 AM
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Default Re: Can't consistently hit max bpms

Good tips on the slow-relaxed warmup approach, I'll give this a try next few gigs! Makes sense with the analogies to other sports..

@bud7h4, I use Murray Spivak's technique, taught by Chad W. on drum channel. I actually switched to that for the purpose of relaxation, and it has done wonders for my playing, so I'm confident it's a good technique to carry forward speed-wise.

Also, when I quote these bpms, they are true wrist singles... no rebound strokes. No Moeller doubles/triples, push-pull, finger bounces etc.
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