Author Topic: Any Drummers out there...?  (Read 3384 times)

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Any Drummers out there...?
« on: February 22, 2010, 12:23:23 AM »
I had my surgery 4 months ago.  I'm starting to play drums again.  The problem is that when I play the bass drum with my right leg (the surgical side), I actually lift my leg up and slam it down on the bass drum pedal.  I don't play with my ankle.  I'm a power drummer.

I believe that's how I got arthritis in the first place.  Many years of slamming the pedal down with the shock/vibrations coming up threw my leg to my hip.  I don't have arthritis any where else.  It doesn't run in my family and the very first time it started hurting was when I was drumming.

I'm wondering if I could somehow loosen the bhr by playing again.  At my 3 month check up, my doctor told me I could play.  It's about time to get back on the horse but I don't want to screw anything up.

I suppose it's not that much different than running.  Except I'm sitting...hmm, I can't think of anything that is comparable to what I'm going to be doing.

RBHR - Oct 21st, 2009 - Dr. Salypongse

Pat Walter

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Re: Any Drummers out there...?
« Reply #1 on: February 22, 2010, 07:37:44 AM »
Hey Foosball

You did not say how old you are.  I am with you - I think playing could have caused a problem.  I am most likely much older than you and had my hip resurfaced at 61.  I know most people will laugh at this, but I have been a musician all my life.  Played clarinet and sax in big bands, conert bands and musicals.  I also, however, played accordion all my life.  I rested the 29 pound Iorio electronic accordion on my left knee while sitting on a stool.  Would play 3-4 hours a day to practice and play 3 hour jobs for years.  I believe the heavy accordion on the end of my knee was a cantilever that caused a lot of extra rubbing and pressure on my left hip.  The right hip did not have the same problems.

Dr. De Smet said I could go back to playing, but I don't play much now.  Mostly play piano or organ to give my hip a break. It does not hurt to play now.

Personally, I would wait a few mor emonths before slamming the pedal down.  It takes 6 months to mostly heal and a full year to heal completely.  Since you slam it hard, I think there is a very small possiblily you could injure the femur neck or even somehow the cup if not placed quite right.  I would be more conservative if it were me.  Having a revision is not any fun.  I think your doctor probably doesn't understand how aggressive you are.  Best to be a bit more careful now so you keep you hip a long time.  Sounds like you need to change your style of drumming.  Agian, I don't know how old you are - but having major surgery to replay a hip because of a slamming technique is not very good.  You will find your body to be very important to you as you get older. You might be lucky and live a long time  :D   Best to try and save your body parts if you can.

Take it easy on the hip for awhile.  How are your eardrums doing?  I have bad ringing in my ears just from normal band playing.  Drives me crazy.  I use to play picolo and stopped from the problems with my right ear.  Music is great  - but hard on the body.

Good Luck.  Surely you march to a different beat   ;D

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3/15/06 LBHR De Smet


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Re: Any Drummers out there...?
« Reply #2 on: February 22, 2010, 03:05:06 PM »
Thanks for responding Pat.  I'm 50 years old, but in pretty good shape.  I currently work out on the eliptical, exercise bike, and treadmill for 20mins each, almost every day.  I put a lot of tension on exercise bike, raise the incline on the treadmill.  

I've thought about switching styles but that would require about a years worth of constant practice to get acclimated.  Every drummer to some extent raises the leg up and down.  No one really plays with just the ankle motion....But I get your drift.

I've also thought about switching to left handed.  I already play ambidextrous with my hands, so it wouldn't be extremely difficult.  Then I would be playing the bass drum with my left leg.  Both would take a year or so to accomplish.  Not sure I have the time to do that either.

The band I'm in is auditioning a bass player this Thursday.  I think I'll take your advice and just relax and ease up for the next couple of months.  It only really matters when we play live.  Certainly don't want to screw up the good work that's been done.  

Thanks again for the advice.

My ears are starting to go.  I also have ringing in my ears and can't hear as well as I used to.  I'll probably be wearing a hearing aid within the next 5 years.  Too many times of playing in front of Marshall amps blasting in my ears....not to mention the decibels that come from beating the tar out of the drums & cymbals.   I didn't know accordions weigh so much.  I can see how that could cause you problems.

Keep on Rockin'

« Last Edit: February 22, 2010, 04:50:25 PM by Foosball »
RBHR - Oct 21st, 2009 - Dr. Salypongse


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Re: Any Drummers out there...?
« Reply #3 on: June 03, 2011, 10:50:23 AM »
Hi Foosball,
   I am a 50 year old drummer also, and I'm considering having my right hip resurfaced (the primary bass pedal foot).  I was wondering, a year later now, how your drumming progress has been up to this point?   Even if you had to switch to less agressive, more ankle approach to playing, at least you are playing!  As all of us drummers know, to drum is to live and you cannot do without it.  Even the great Neil Peart switched up his playing style and technique at one point!
Jake in MN
« Last Edit: June 13, 2011, 10:03:19 AM by jakemn »
RBHR - Feb. 2012 - Dr. Rogerson - Madison, WI


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Re: Any Drummers out there...?
« Reply #4 on: March 26, 2012, 11:56:27 AM »
Hi Jake,

Sorry it has take so long to respond.  I don't check this site that often. 

Yes, I'm drumming again but I'm using more ankle on my bass drum technique.  Sometimes I get excited and start using my leg more often.  I do notice some soreness in the joint and also the muscle on the top my thigh. 

I've played very little over the past year and recently just started on a project with a friend playing original instrumental music.  So I've been playing everyday for the past month.  For this type of music I need to be more "Peartish", and except for the soreness of the muscle, I'm playing fine.  I'm hoping to work through it. 

I'll keep you posted.  Please let me know how you're doing.

RBHR - Oct 21st, 2009 - Dr. Salypongse


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