How do you deal with constant blister problems?

LM201

Senior Member
I used to get blisters all the time when I first started out. Now my hands are a giant callus.

I just sucked it up and occasionally put duct tape over some
 
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jay norem

Guest
Man, I don't know. Can that be right? Blisters? From playing the drums?
I remember when I was starting out that would happen to me but it was because I wasn't playing right.
Have you checked your grip? Are you gripping too tightly?
I don't know. It sounds painful. I guess you're just going to have to tape up your hands, or something.
You're not allergic to anything are you?
 

joshisaces

Gold Member
Yeah, is that bad?

It came in handy whenever we had to do something with hand percussion
I have like 40 band-aids on my hands now. I would think band-aids would be better. And duct tape would hurt your blisters. Would it not?
 

joshisaces

Gold Member
Man, I don't know. Can that be right? Blisters? From playing the drums?
I remember when I was starting out that would happen to me but it was because I wasn't playing right.
Have you checked your grip? Are you gripping too tightly?
I don't know. It sounds painful. I guess you're just going to have to tape up your hands, or something.
You're not allergic to anything are you?
No, I'm not. I'm putting bandaids on my hands right now. It's working out kind of good on my fingers, but not my hands. In all the time I've been playing, I haven't gotten blisters that much...

Actually, I think I know what happened. I went on vacation for a long time, and then started playing when I came back. Going from not playing to playing for hours a day formed the blisters. Am I right?
 

Matty G.

Senior Member
I used to get them more than I do now. Maybe it's because of better technique, less nervousness at shows (which makes you tense), or calloused hands. But when I did get them, I used Johnson & Johnson tape.

Make sure to use good quality sticks, not the cheapo ones, but sticks with a good finish, (I like RegalTip) and don't let a pair of sticks get too out of hand before you throw it away. Otherwise you go to flip it to use the butt end and the tip is all shredded with hi-hat/rimshot marks, you can get a blister that way.

Also, wouldn't be a bad idea to inspect your grip. Make sure you aren't squeezing too tight. Sometimes it can happen if you're at a show and you start playing louder/harder than you practice, so always practicing as if you're in a show setting. Hope that helps!
 
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jay norem

Guest
No, I'm not. I'm putting bandaids on my hands right now. It's working out kind of good on my fingers, but not my hands. In all the time I've been playing, I haven't gotten blisters that much...

Actually, I think I know what happened. I went on vacation for a long time, and then started playing when I came back. Going from not playing to playing for hours a day formed the blisters. Am I right?
I'm thinking, guessing, that you're holding your sticks wrong. I don't understand how you're getting blisters on your hands. Describe, please, how you hold your sticks when you play.
 

aydee

Platinum Member
American grip is a combination the French & German grips. Its a comfortable matched grip with the palms at a 45% angle

There is a saying ( don't remember who said it, one of the teaching greats I suspect ) that you should grip a stick like you'd hold a little birdie. Tight enough not to let it fly away, and gently enough not to hurt it at all.
 
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jay norem

Guest
Yes, I'm pretty sure that it was Jim Chapin who said that, and it's a wonderful way to describe how to hold a stick.
 

Latin Groover

Pioneer Member

Abstsbtsb

Member
Blisters come from improper technique. This isn't to say that you should not get them. Whenever you are pushing yourself harder than normal during your playing your grip will suffer and you will obtain blisters. This is common with more intense styles of drumming. You may also get them if you don't stretch and warm up enough before you play. Its natural to get them if your trying to push your playing to be faster or stronger. Just try to keep proper technique best you can and if you get blisters put a band-aid on.
 
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jay norem

Guest
American grip is a combination the French & German grips. Its a comfortable matched grip with the palms at a 45% angle.
Interesting. Never heard of that, but it's rather like the way I hold my sticks. And I've always thought I was using a French grip, where the thumb is on top. Well, actually I do use a French grip the more I think about it.
But look here, Josh, have you ever had a drum teacher? He'd straighten you out right away.
 

Ian Ballard

Silver Member
I used to get blisters all the time when I first started out. Now my hands are a giant callus.

I just sucked it up and occasionally put duct tape over some
Blisters and calluses are one thing, but carpel-tunnel syndrome and crippling arthritis is another.

I'd suggest dealing with blisters, by deep, introspective meditation.

Once you can only focus on the "in and out" breath with the absolute inability to veer from that thought, imagine the sticks doing all the work. Your hands do nothing but guide the stick, no matter who loud and crazy you play.

Seriously. Not joking.

Take it from somebody who's spent many months on the road, playing in VERY heavy bands. At some point, if you don't modify the relationship between the sticks and your hands, you will be a very sorry, crippled man.

Steve Smith's DVD "History of the US Beat" has a bit about a matched-grip "power" technique, where the arms are used in the motion and the hands twist in a natural motion outward. Kinda hard to explain in words. Basically, there are ways to strike a drum to get 100% of it's volume capability, using a fraction of energy and force absorbed by the body. Extra energy beyond the point where the drum cannot get any louder, is wasted and converts into potential damage to your body.
 
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