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Hemiplegia and Drumming

RaeWitterRaeWitter Posts: 15Member Connected
Hi Guys! My 6 year old has right sided hemiplegia and has taken an interest in drumming. His grip on his right hand is very weak and he keeps dropping the drumstick and gets really frustrated. Does anybody know of any aids that can assist him to hold the stick? Or any ideas how we can keep the stick in his hand without literally gluing it on?!

Thank you! Rae :)

Replies

  • Richard_ScopeRichard_Scope Posts: 1,533Administrator Scope community team
    Good to speak with you again! I was always the lead singer but drummers are cool too! I have found this drumming website that provides drumming grip solutions that might work for you.
    Be careful, some of the products have pretty funky names and you perhaps wouldn't want a 6 year old reading them!


    Scope
    Specialist Information Officer - Cerebral Palsy
  • atlas46atlas46 Posts: 747Community champion Pioneering
    Hi @RayWitter & @Richard_Scope

    Think the lead singer should, stick to singing and let a drummer give some advice!!

    Your son will hold a drum stick in his right hand, like he was holding an hammer.

    The stick needs to bounce of the skin after each beat.

    There are mitts (fingerless) that you can buy to strenghthen his grip.

    You might have to wrap further support.

    The main hand in drumming is the left, which is held across the finger and thumb.

    This stick provides the rapid beats on the drum head, with the right giving off beats.

    It will be try and try again, before you get a solution.

    Hope this helps.
  • Richard_ScopeRichard_Scope Posts: 1,533Administrator Scope community team
    @atlas46 I bow to your drumming knowledge! :) :) 
    Scope
    Specialist Information Officer - Cerebral Palsy
  • RaeWitterRaeWitter Posts: 15Member Connected
    Hi @Richard_Scope! Thank you for your help once again! I will definitely check out that website now...and hey lead singers are just as awsome lol

    Hey there @atlas46!! Thank you for responding! This has made me feel better knowing that the left hand is the hand he needs the most...and that's his functioning hand. I will have a look for thise mitts, hopefully they are on the website @Richard_Scope noted. If they don't help do you think it would be ok to strap the stick to the hand in some way? Also whilst I'm searching for a SEND drumming teacher (proving difficult) are there any tutorials I can get him started on on YouTube? Or if you happen to know any teachers happy to reach a child with additional needs in London? Look forward to hearing from you!!!
  • StayceStayce Posts: 273Member Pioneering
    edited November 2018
    Hi @RaeWitter

    The links under the resources section on The Hemihelp website may help you find a drummer teacher or a musical organisations or groups - links are towards the bottom of the page.

    http://www.hemihelp.org.uk/families/activities/music/

    Sound Sense offers a database of teacher musicians
    https://www.soundsense.org/find-a-musician

    You might also want to look at YouTube at videos of Benjamin Balair a French Drummer with Hemiplegia.

    Hope this helps - Let us know how your son gets on

    Best
  • RaeWitterRaeWitter Posts: 15Member Connected
    Hey @Stayce! Wow I'm going to YouTube him right now. I've seen pianists with one hand but never any drummers!

    Will peruse the links now! Fingers crossed these links can help find a teacher/group for him as I have no drumming ability at all lol, so it's a start in the right direction at least!!! 

    Thank you very much!:)
  • atlas46atlas46 Posts: 747Community champion Pioneering
    Hi @RaeWitter

    Let's get your son off to a flying start, on his music adventure.

    The Guildhall School of Music and Drama, has a Junior School, which is held every Saturday.  This is for children aged 4 to 18 years, I am certain they would welcome your son.

    Back to grip problem.

    Contact the Guildhall and ask to speak to Zands Duggan or Glyn Mattews, they are both, percussionist (posh name for drummers) tutors at the school. Again, I am sure they would assist you in anyway they can. See if they will let your son try the range of instruments a percussionist plays.

    Telephone number 020 7628 2571.

    Keep us updated.
  • nicebootsniceboots Posts: 195Member Pioneering
    Hi I have cp and played drums in my teens, although my hands are only slightly affected compared to my legs, I still had to find ways of making holding sticks more comfortable. I found using thicker sticks easier to grip. I also found holding my left stick (usually used for snare drum) like a jazz drummer, known as traditional grip or underhand grip. I felt the stick stayed in my hand easier and I got less fatigue in my wrist as the movement comes more from the forearm. 
    Best of luck, don’t be afraid to experiment with the configuration of a kit! 
    Enjoy!
  • RaeWitterRaeWitter Posts: 15Member Connected
    Hi @niceboots! I hadnt even thought about changing the configuration what a good idea! I know the grip you mean - I'll get him to try this as I know his left arm fatigues easily as he constantly uses it! I will definitely need to get him thicker sticks...are there children's drumsticks or are they all the same size?:)
  • RaeWitterRaeWitter Posts: 15Member Connected
    Wow @atlas46 this is incredible! Thank you so very much! I will be sure to contact the percussionists tomorrow! I will let you know how I get on! Thanks again :)
  • nicebootsniceboots Posts: 195Member Pioneering
    I’ve not been involved with drumming for years, but as far as I can remember, they’re all the same size. Definitely go and try various types at a music shop. If you can find a specialist percussion store, they are generally really helpful. In fact most people you meet involved in music are great in my experience! Check out videos of def Leppard drummer rick Allen, he had an amputation, so only played with one arm.
  • nicebootsniceboots Posts: 195Member Pioneering
    Another thing that’s just sprung to mind is maybe trying fingersless neoprene or leather gloves to help grip, or even coming up with sleeve type things to go on the sticks? Maybe rubber?
  • ben62ben62 Posts: 8Member Connected
    Stayce said:
    Hi @RaeWitter

    You might also want to look at YouTube at videos of Benjamin Balair a French Drummer with Hemiplegia.


    RaeWitter 

    Hi from France ! 

    I am Benjamin "the French Drummer" ;-)
    I just found on this page totally by chance by "searching" my name on Google, what a surprise to be mentioned here!

    I don’t know if your question is still relevant, but if my experience can help you, I started music when I was 7 and drums when I was 9.

    Speaking of holding the drumsticks, I don’t think it should be too much trouble for your daughter. I learned the drums with classic "Vic Firth 5 A". The grip with the thumb and index finger was done naturally.
    Even though my right-side wand outfit is "peculiar". As you can see from my videos, I play more with my forearm than I did with my forearm.

    I can assure you that playing drums with a hemiplegia is not impossible!
    Today I'm 27 years old and I'm a drummer in several rock bands.

    If your daughter is interested in the drums do not hesitate to encourage her in this way!
    Do not hesitate to contact me if you have additional questions ;-)

    Wish you all the Best ! 

    Ben'

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=3KbGbJZ6OPk

  • StayceStayce Posts: 273Member Pioneering
    edited July 3
    Hi @ben62

    Welcome to the community 😀

    Thanks so much for posting. I’m a massive music fan and came across your drumming on YouTube and  thought it would be useful to @RaeWitter son - Inspirational 👍I have right Hemi myself 

    Take care

    Best 

    Stayce


  • RegReg Posts: 12Member Connected
    I have mild cp and found sticking rough plasters round stuff is helpful for grip as not only does it build up the size of the item but the rough surface helps you hang on to it . If the sticks are falling could you attach a line or elastic to them so they can be pulled up without bending if that is an issue for your son? I am tone deaf so drum sticks falling out of my hands would be a blessing !
  • Richard_ScopeRichard_Scope Posts: 1,533Administrator Scope community team
    Hi @ben62 thanks for posting! Good to meet you @Reg

    Scope
    Specialist Information Officer - Cerebral Palsy
  • Chloe_ScopeChloe_Scope Posts: 3,259Administrator Scope community team
    Welcome to the community @ben62! Glad you have found us and thank you for sharing this with us!
    Chloe
    Online Community Officer
  • ben62ben62 Posts: 8Member Connected
    @Stayce said:
    Hi @ben62

    Welcome to the community 😀

    Thanks so much for posting. I’m a massive music fan and came across your drumming on YouTube and  thought it would be useful to @RaeWitter son - Inspirational 👍I have right Hemi myself 
    Welcome to the community @ben62! Glad you have found us and thank you for sharing this with us!
    Hi everyone, 

    Thank you for your welcome ! 

    It's a nice coincidence that you found one of my videos on youtube Stayce :-)
    I"m happy  to have found this forum ! 
    Hi @ben62 thanks for posting! 


    You're welcome, If I can help you or anyone here I'm happy !  @Richard_Scope ;

  • atlas46atlas46 Posts: 747Community champion Pioneering
    Hi @ben62

    Love that video on YouTube, are any more coming soon.

    Best wishes
  • RaeWitterRaeWitter Posts: 15Member Connected
    Hi @ben62.

    You are an inspiration! Thank you so much. I will show my son your videos. Did you have a teacher or was you self taught? Rae 😊
  • ben62ben62 Posts: 8Member Connected
    edited July 4
    atlas46 said:
    Hi @ben62

    Love that video on YouTube, are any more coming soon.

    Best wishes
    Hi  @atlas46

    Thank you so much !
    The next drum cover should be released next week if I have time to record it.
    To wait, you can watch the other videos, there are more than 50 videos available on my youtube channel right now ;-) 

    youtube.com/benjledrumer

    RaeWitter said:
    Hi @ben62.

    You are an inspiration! Thank you so much. I will show my son your videos. Did you have a teacher or was you self taught? Rae 😊
    RaeWitter Thank you so much ! This is the best compliment you can do!

    I took private snare drum lessons when I was 7 years old and then at the age of 9 I started taking drum lessons with the same teacher.

    Today I am a drummer in several bands and I always take drum lessons to improve myself (we are never too good  ;-) ) always with this teacher who is a friend above all today.

    Where the story is cool is that in addition to my bands, I have to replace my teacher when he is not available on some gig with one of his bands!

    How old is your son, is he playing drums?

  • StayceStayce Posts: 273Member Pioneering
    They are great videos @ben62 - Really inspirational 👍Keep up the amazing work. That’s awesome that you replace your teacher 😀

    Keep us posted with your new work


    Best

    Stayce
  • Adrian_ScopeAdrian_Scope Posts: 2,428Administrator Scope community team
    This is brilliant. Thank you for all your help @ben62.
    Senior Online Community Officer
    Scope
  • ben62ben62 Posts: 8Member Connected
    Stayce said:
    They are great videos @ben62 - Really inspirational 👍Keep up the amazing work. That’s awesome that you replace your teacher 😀

    Keep us posted with your new work


    Best

    Stayce
    For sure ! 

    This is brilliant. Thank you for all your help @ben62.

    You're welcome ! 😀

  • csno01csno01 Posts: 36Member Courageous

    Hi Everyone,


    Wow what an interesting post! 


    @Raewitter:

    I have Spastic CP and I play drums and percussion as well. I started playing drums at the age of 11, although did not start learning properly until I was 14. By the time I was 19-20 I began to find my own path and by this time, had fewer lessons. I played in a couple of bands with my mates in my late teens early 20s. 

    My CP has affected my right side so I play drums left handed. As this has already been mentioned, sticks are all the same size, it is the weight you should be looking out for. I.e. 5A is standard weight. You also have 7A which is a lighter weight, although I apreciate in your case, your son would want something a bit heavier to support his grip.


    The links under the resources section on The Hemihelp website may help you find a drummer teacher or a musical organisations or groups - links are towards the bottom of the page.


    http://www.hemihelp.org.uk/families/activities/music/


    Sound Sense offers a database of teacher musicians

    https://www.soundsense.org/find-a-musician


    You might also want to look at YouTube at videos of Benjamin Balair a French Drummer with Hemiplegia.


    Hope this helps - Let us know how your son gets on


    Following Stayce post above are there any organisations on that list for disabled musicians who would like to get to gether and jam? I will however check them out!


    Hi from France ! 


    I am Benjamin "the French Drummer" ;-) 

    I just found on this page totally by chance by "searching" my name on Google, what a surprise to be mentioned here!


    I don’t know if your question is still relevant, but if my experience can help you, I started music when I was 7 and drums when I was 9.


    Speaking of holding the drumsticks, I don’t think it should be too much trouble for your daughter. I learned the drums with classic "Vic Firth 5 A". The grip with the thumb and index finger was done naturally.

    Even though my right-side wand outfit is "peculiar". As you can see from my videos, I play more with my forearm than I did with my forearm.


    I can assure you that playing drums with a hemiplegia is not impossible!

    Today I'm 27 years old and I'm a drummer in several rock bands.


    If your daughter is interested in the drums do not hesitate to encourage her in this way!

    Do not hesitate to contact me if you have additional questions ;-)


    Wish you all the Best ! 


    Ben’


    @ Ben62: I have checked out your youtube video above for Learn To Fly by Foo Fighters. Very impressive drumming. I take it you are professional player?


    Regards

    CSno1 

  • ben62ben62 Posts: 8Member Connected
    csno01 said:

    @ Ben62: I have checked out your youtube video above for Learn To Fly by Foo Fighters. Very impressive drumming. I take it you are professional player?

    Regards

    CSno1 

    Hi ! 
    Thank you for your message, I'm really glad you apreciated the video!
    For the moment I'm not really a "professional musician" even if objectively I have the skills, but if I have the oporunity to become it by doing more concerts it is with pleasure that I will seize the oportunity! If it interests you, I posted 2 new drum cover on my Youtube channel today : 

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=aprTpZQkHVs

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=LD7L9HFNjuA 

    Ben'
  • April2018momApril2018mom Posts: 1,180Member Pioneering
    ben62 said:
    csno01 said:

    @ Ben62: I have checked out your youtube video above for Learn To Fly by Foo Fighters. Very impressive drumming. I take it you are professional player?

    Regards

    CSno1 

    Hi ! 
    Thank you for your message, I'm really glad you apreciated the video!
    For the moment I'm not really a "professional musician" even if objectively I have the skills, but if I have the oporunity to become it by doing more concerts it is with pleasure that I will seize the oportunity! If it interests you, I posted 2 new drum cover on my Youtube channel today : 

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=aprTpZQkHVs

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=LD7L9HFNjuA 

    Ben'
    Do you offer drum lessons or not?
  • ben62ben62 Posts: 8Member Connected

    Do you offer drum lessons or not?
    @April2018mom

    Hi !
    At the moment I do not give lessons, but if someone here needs advice, I am available;)

  • ben62ben62 Posts: 8Member Connected
    Hello ! 

    Just for info, if you like the Red Hot Chili Peppers, a new drum cover is online on my Youtube channel  :)




    Have a good day !

    Ben'
  • Chloe_ScopeChloe_Scope Posts: 3,259Administrator Scope community team
    Thanks for this @ben62, a great song choice!
    Chloe
    Online Community Officer
  • Adrian_ScopeAdrian_Scope Posts: 2,428Administrator Scope community team
    Brilliant @ben62. Thanks for sharing. :smile:
    Senior Online Community Officer
    Scope
  • ben62ben62 Posts: 8Member Connected
    Thank you very much !
  • StayceStayce Posts: 273Member Pioneering
    Great stuff! @ben62 😀👍
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