Strange foot technique problem

JT1

Silver Member
Ok so recently I have developed this weird problem with my right foot.

When I play constant double bass at mid tempos (around 120-130 bpm and I play heel up) when i drop my foot for the stroke, my heel is hitting the heel plate and affecting my stroke dramatically in terms of power and attack. I don't know why this is happening as it never used to be a problem for me but it has become a huge nuisance. I'm playing full leg motion for this tempo and I try to keep my heel up but no matter what I do it hits the heel plate and affects my stroke.

Has anyone else had a similar experience? If so what did you do to correct it?

Thanks folks.
 

joeysnare

Silver Member
i used 2 ways to break me of that habit. A. raising my seat a bit to force me to play heels up. B. this ones a lil weird but it worked for me, i placed a weight lifting weight over top of my heel plate and rested my heel on it, this forces your heel to stay put by keeping it an inch or two up and static.this also really helped me to play from the ankles and not from the whole leg.
 

JT1

Silver Member
i used 2 ways to break me of that habit. A. raising my seat a bit to force me to play heels up. B. this ones a lil weird but it worked for me, i placed a weight lifting weight over top of my heel plate and rested my heel on it, this forces your heel to stay put by keeping it an inch or two up and static.this also really helped me to play from the ankles and not from the whole leg.
Wow I never thought about that, that's a great idea with the weight. So how long before you removed it? Thanks for the suggestions man
 

Fdunlap

Junior Member
If you have truly "never had this problem" then you simply may have recently gotten slightly taller, i don't know how old you are but it seems that a simple just raising your seat up would do just fine. If that doesn't work then yeah I would try the foot weight or I have even seen people use soda bottles you yo cant rst your foot on it without it rolling.
 
C

Crazy8s

Guest
Perhaps the beater angle changed on your pedal? If it slipped while playing, your pedal board angle will be lower upon impact, meaning your foot would be closer to the ground.
 

joeysnare

Silver Member
Wow I never thought about that, that's a great idea with the weight. So how long before you removed it? Thanks for the suggestions man
every week id check and see how i was progressing without the weight, it took me about two weeks at an hour of solid pedal pactice to correct the problem, also crazy 8's made a great point that i hadn't considered, its good idea to check your gear often and make sure it hasn't slipped or loosened. i use black marker lines on all my gear to alert me of slippage.
 

JT1

Silver Member
Perhaps the beater angle changed on your pedal? If it slipped while playing, your pedal board angle will be lower upon impact, meaning your foot would be closer to the ground.
Thanks for the tip Crazy8s but I don't think anything like that has happened: I do mess with my pedal quite a bit, in a way it is good because it helps me to play on lots of different settings but it has also had the opposite effect of harming my technique I believe.

I have changed the angle by bringing it closer to the head and this has lowered the footboard but I actually find this has helped. I was playing at about 6.5" back from the head now it's abut 5.5". The lower footboard makes it easier for me to use the ball of my foot but I still struggle in the mid range though maybe I just need good solid practice.

Joeysnare: do you have any good practice advice for those mid tempos as they feel pretty uncomfortable right now.

Cheers
 

joeysnare

Silver Member
again i can just tell you what worked for me but if it helps then great :)
most of my pedal practice consists of starting my metrenome at a slow speed and working through quarter notes. eighths, eigth triplets, sixteenths, sixteenth triples and sometimes thirtyseconds( if their possible at that speed). and i try to hold each note value for a solid 30 seconds minimum. i also do paradiddles in eigth notes the doubles starting out as eights then moving em to sixteenths, and alternating triples using 8ths and 16ths like this


RLR L R LRL R L

or using more eigths

RLR L R L R LRL R L R L

all i can really stress is eveness in your strokes and i really hope this helps you , cheers.
 

brentcn

Platinum Member
Ok so recently I have developed this weird problem with my right foot.

When I play constant double bass at mid tempos (around 120-130 bpm and I play heel up) when i drop my foot for the stroke, my heel is hitting the heel plate and affecting my stroke dramatically in terms of power and attack. I don't know why this is happening as it never used to be a problem for me but it has become a huge nuisance. I'm playing full leg motion for this tempo and I try to keep my heel up but no matter what I do it hits the heel plate and affects my stroke.

Has anyone else had a similar experience? If so what did you do to correct it?

Thanks folks.
Man, I actually TEACH the method you're describing as a problem! I sometimes call it a "scissor stroke", where the ball of the foot and the top of the footboard remain in contact, while the heel is up (open scissors), but as the pedal is played, then entire foot comes in contact with the whole footboard momentarily (closed scissors). I've had great success playing mid-tempo double bass patterns evenly and powerfully using this technique, and my students catch on quickly. (Above a certain tempo, I agree, a heel-up approach becomes unavoidable.)

When you let your whole foot hit the footboard, you use the weight of your leg, which adds power (usually this is a good thing!). If you are sufficiently relaxed, the beater will bounce of the head until the next stroke. Also, when your foot isn't playing, your leg is permitted to rest with the heel on the heel plate, so you don't have to use your stomach muscles to lift your heel off the ground, waiting for the next bass drum note. (If you are "resting" while leaving the beaters pressed into the head, well...)

So let me ask you: why is it a problem to use one technique for certain tempos, and another technique for others? Why strive to be so uniform in your approach? Don't get me wrong, I think it's reasonable to use the same techniques on your left as on your right, to create a balanced sound, so yes, I think you should experiment with this technique on you left foot. And when I think about a single stroke roll with the hands, the techniques we use to play a fast roll are quite different from the techniques of a slow roll, and that's a good thing!
 

JT1

Silver Member
So let me ask you: why is it a problem to use one technique for certain tempos, and another technique for others? Why strive to be so uniform in your approach? Don't get me wrong, I think it's reasonable to use the same techniques on your left as on your right, to create a balanced sound, so yes, I think you should experiment with this technique on you left foot. And when I think about a single stroke roll with the hands, the techniques we use to play a fast roll are quite different from the techniques of a slow roll, and that's a good thing!
Thanks for your response brentcn however I don't think you understand how this was causing a problem for me. When I was playing the stroke my foot was hitting off of the heel plate and causing my stroke to lack power it was almost like I was pushing down and there was no more room to push down so my heel hit the heel plate and my stroke ended up being sloppy and too soft.

This has nothing to do with what techniques I use at different tempos but mainly the problem that was caused due to my heel coming into contact with the heel plate whilst playing. I could compare it to hitting your stick of a snare mic that is mounted between your snare and rack tom (I'm sure some of you will know what I'm on about here lol)

As of last night I have discovered my problem Crazy82 and Joeysnare, thank you for your contributions your suggestion of my footboard may have slipped wasn't what had happened but it urged me to try a much higher footboard (higher angle less chance of hitting the heel plate duh I should have known!) than usual and my foot is no longer hitting the heel plate which is such a relief as I was starting to panic. So there we have it my footboard was too low and I thought that was better!
 
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