How To Teach Yourself Drums: Step By Step for Beginners

By JohnPascuzzi

One of the first musical instruments used by humans is the drum. They play a significant role in every musical genre. Drumming is interesting and enjoyable. However, as a newbie, you will inevitably run into some obstacles.

Even playing the drums demands dedication and some practice, much like other interesting pastimes like acting, surfing, skateboarding, etc. Think about taking online private music classes. You’ll benefit most from your drum lessons if you know a few additional drumming tricks. This article will show you the step by step how to teach yourself drums.

Before You Start, Is Learning the Drums on Your Own a Good Idea?

Yes, without a doubt, is the quick response. Because it’s possible to teach yourself almost any skill if you put your mind to it, are an avid researcher, and have the time and space. You can successfully teach yourself anything if you have these qualities, and learning to play the drums is no exception.

In light of this, let’s take a closer look at some inquiries you ought to make of yourself before determining to teach yourself how to play the drums. The answers should enable you to decide whether studying from a teacher would be preferable than teaching yourself.

Do You Have the Willingness to Work Hard?

Do You Have the Willingness to Work Hard
Do You Have the Willingness to Work Hard

Drumming included, self-teaching anything requires a particular degree of commitment and self-control. Since you don’t have a professional teacher to hold you accountable when you learn something on your own, it’s far simpler to quit up or skip the practice sessions necessary to become proficient.

On the other hand, learning independently allows you to proceed at your own pace without feeling obligated to keep up with the instructor’s or the class’s rate of learning. However, even this requires self-discipline. You won’t improve as a player if you can’t choose your own pace and achieve your own objectives.

Which Way Is The Best For Learning Drum?

There are numerous learning similarities among those who are most likely to be successful at educating themselves. They enjoy reading and doing research, whether it be online or in books. They are inquisitive and like discovering new media, including textual and visual content. Additionally, and maybe most significantly, they can accomplish a skill after reading about it or seeing someone else perform it.

When you learn to play the drums on your own, there is no teacher to help you with form correction or to guide you through the many steps. In other words, you won’t have somebody checking to see whether you’re doing it correctly. It is crucial that you can learn just as easily by doing as you can by reading and watching.

Have You Got Room for a Drum Set?

You can learn and practice rhythms using practically any surface as a drum, so this isn’t a prerequisite, at least at first. But it’s something to think about. 

If you wanted to, could you possibly have a drum set where you currently reside? Do you reside in an apartment where the likelihood of owning a drum set, even down the line, is rather slim? Do you reside in a peaceful area where your practicing might disturb others?

You’ll probably give up playing the drums before you’ve really mastered it if you can’t have a drum set where you live, you’re likely to disturb those who live nearby, or you’re worried that learning the drums won’t fit into your lifestyle.

*** Read more: How To Set Up A Drum Set? Step By Step Guide

Step By Step Of How To Teach Yourself Drums

Step By Step Of How To Teach Yourself Drums
Step By Step Of How To Teach Yourself Drums

1. Create a timetable

Either you need to develop self-control or create a regular practice routine that serves your best interests. There is no arguing that practicing for 30 minutes a day is preferable to practicing for three hours a week.

You should not, however, set unrealistic expectations because doing so would lead to disappointment. If you are consistent, four to five practice sessions each week should be adequate. Maintain your motivation to achieve higher results.

2. Studying Fundamental Drum Beats

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Get a book on playing the drums and look at some excellent beginner drum tutorials. You must learn the fundamentals of how to:

Assemble your drum equipment.

Properly seated behind your drum kit (very important for the health of your back)

Hold your drumsticks properly.

Basics of maintaining time

Getting the fundamentals correctly is crucial.

Drumming becomes much simpler after you learn the appropriate way to hold your sticks. This is as a result of the fact that you are using the drumsticks rather than obstructing them!

Make sure to view the video up top, which is a fantastic introduction to playing the drums.

When it becomes natural to play, this will teach you how to play a very simple beat and will be highly satisfying.

At first, playing the drums might seem challenging. Trying to coordinate your limbs may seem challenging. Just keep practicing and believing in the process, and you’ll get there in due time. Give it 20 minutes with a simple rock beat and you’ll be shocked at how much you learn.

The next step is to advance to increasingly difficult drum beats and rhythms.

3. Education on drum fills

Education on drum fills
Education on drum fills

The next phase in learning to play the drums is learning drum fills. The majority of your music will consist of a normal drum beat. The drum fill frequently deviates from the beat in order to create something intriguing.

It frequently involves a tom roll, cymbal crashes, or just a shift in the beat to add a little to the groove.

Return to the drum rhythm from the first segment and attempt to incorporate a drum fill now. Go ahead and enjoy the procedure if you have a drum set.

For beginning, it doesn’t need to sound spectacular; just get into the habit of a little beat mixing.

*** Read more: Learn How To Play Drums Without A Drum Set!

4. Invest on a metronome to keep time

Although metronomes may seem extremely dull, they are one of the most crucial instruments for a drummer. For drummers, there are several excellent metronome apps. The alternative is to acquire a separate metronome for drummers.

BPM is used to measure timing in music (Beats Per Minute). Use a metronome to practice playing your standard drum beats and fills. Slow down the BPM if you feel that you are losing control of the beat.

Play everything slowly at first and just speed up when you feel confident doing so.

When recording, drummers almost typically play to a click-track, thus developing excellent timekeeping skills will be very beneficial to you.

You can advance to the next level and learn some simple drum tunes for beginners once you’ve mastered the fundamental beats (check out our article, which includes videos for some great easy songs to learn).

Drums are a highly satisfying instrument to perform. You’re most likely motivated by a specific drummer. Look through the tracks that drummer has recorded; you might be able to learn a few of them. Just play over them while the song is playing in the background.

Drum soloing shouldn’t take up most of your practice time. Learning a few songs helps you feel more confident and keeps you motivated, which is incredibly good. After having fun and feeling accomplishment from learning new songs, go back to the fundamentals and continue honing your drumming skills.

Learn new techniques, more complex drum rhythms, and additional drumming fundamentals.

Once you’ve done that, learning songs will come naturally to you.

5. Get to Know Drum Notation Fundamentals

Get to Know Drum Notation Fundamentals
Get to Know Drum Notation Fundamentals

Understanding how to read drum sheet music may initially seem quite monotonous, yet it is an important skill for drummers to possess. Most seasoned drummers are at least familiar with the fundamentals of drum notation.

Once you’ve mastered the fundamentals, you can start playing a drum score. Investing in a solid drum book after you have mastered the fundamentals is unquestionably worthwhile.

Being able to play from drum notation while standing behind your drum equipment is fantastic. You won’t have to scroll among movies, which can result in a practice approach that is far more productive and efficient.

*** Read more: How Much Does A Drum Set Cost? – Hapitones

6. Understand drum rudiments

The basic sticking patterns known as drum rudiments can be used as the foundation for drum beats and fills. They are very popular and practical.

The single stroke rolls, double stroke rolls, paradiddles, and flams are the most crucial drum rudiments. These four fundamental rudiments serve as the basis for the majority of additional rudiments.

Bring the rudiments to the drum set after you have mastered them and have practiced them at various speeds on your practice pad.

7. Take Care of Your Hearing

You need to safeguard your hearing. When you are seated in front of your drum equipment, ALWAYS wear earplugs or in-ear monitors for drummers. If you don’t, you can develop a ringing in your ears that lasts a lifetime or perhaps have permanent hearing loss.

All the Different Drum Instruction Methods

Nowadays, you can find materials to teach yourself just about every skill you can think of. These resources are frequently only a few clicks away. Who would have thought it was so simple?

Fortunately for you, we’ve included some of the top tools for drumming self-study right here in this post. You can then spend more time honing your rhythms and less time looking for the resources you require!

Read on to learn more about the many methods for teaching yourself to play the drums as well as the resources that are accessible to you.

There are a lot of professional drum courses on different channels. Although the premium courses are typically a little more in-depth, you may learn a lot from the free lessons as well if you’re not yet fully committed. If you choose a paid course, the cost you can anticipate paying may differ greatly based on the course and the provider. Keep in mind that better doesn’t always mean more expensive.

All the Different Drum Instruction Methods
All the Different Drum Instruction Methods

Training Hard

Finally, practicing what you learn is the finest method to advance in the art of playing the drums. Practice the proper forms repeatedly until they come naturally once you’ve learned them. Then, begin creating and incorporating fresh shapes and abilities.

The most crucial thing in this situation is that you are practicing correctly and consistently. If you don’t practice properly, you’ll end up learning incorrect skills that you’ll have to unlearn in order to learn correctly. Additionally, if you don’t continuously practice, you’ll have trouble recalling the information you learned.

*** Read more: Top 12 Easy Songs To Play On Dums For Beginners

Take Lessons Online

Did you know there are a plethora of online drum classes available? In fact, if you run a quick search for “drum lessons online,” you’ll probably come up with more results than you can handle. Some of the lessons are free, but they are sometimes unstructured, making it more difficult to obtain a general idea of what you need to study.

Watch Other People Play

Observing how the pros play is a terrific method to learn as well. This is a fantastic opportunity to go see your favorite bands live, check out the community symphony or drum line, and watch some drumming competition footage.

Additionally, you might want to look at local band competitions, high school and college bands, and drum corps from various branches.

You will learn more about other players’ forms and tendencies the more you are able to immerse yourself in watching how they play.

Read Drumming-Related Books 

Read Drumming-Related Books
Read Drumming-Related Books

You might possibly discover a gold mine of information if you visit your neighborhood library or preferred bookshop. You could read any of the many instructional books available for playing the drums. In addition to providing theoretical and historical information about drumming, these books also offer practical teaching.

The greatest instructive books will also include a ton of illustrations and diagrams to aid in step-by-step visualization.

Watch Tutorial Videos

You can add some free tutorial videos to your collection of free lessons if you’re not ready to commit to paying for online courses. Anyone looking to acquire a skill, including how to play the drums, should check out YouTube.

Being able to see what you’re attempting to learn is one of the best things about viewing lesson videos. practicing a brand-new drumroll or rhythm? The majority of instructional videos will demonstrate how to perform it slowly while also explaining where to place your hands and how to hold your drumsticks.

Play-Along Tracks And Sheet Music.

If you read music, you can download sheet music and follow along with some of your favorite songs’ mp3s. Some of the tracks have a drum part so you can follow along while listening, while others don’t have one so you can add your own.

These play-along tracks allow you to play by ear even if you are unable to read music. You’ll gain a more practical understanding of how to play the drums if you play along with genuine music. It will enable you to more practically apply the beats and rhythms you learn.

YouTube videos can be used for the same thing. Make a short playlist using your favorite songs, search for them, and start singing along.

Hiring A Private Instructor

Hiring A Private Instructor
Hiring A Private Instructor

Although there is a lot you can learn through books and other resources, getting individualized coaching is the best way to ensure you’re learning them correctly. Through the Take Lessons website, you may look for and hire drum teachers in person or online.

Having a drum instructor will aid in holding you responsible. When you’re having trouble, the teacher can give advice and support. They can also make sure that you’re playing rolls and rhythms correctly and suggest more reading material. Some might be able to instruct you on how to tune your drums if you require it.

*** Read more: Timpani Ranges: Everything You Need to Know

How Long Does It Take To Teach Yourself Drum?

You might be wondering how long this will take once you’ve looked through your options and chosen the ones you want to use. How long before you become the best drummer ever?

It depends on how much effort you’re willing to put into it, is the quick answer.

Learning may come quickly and effortlessly for individuals who have enough of time to practice, have properly chosen their resources, are passionate and driven, and may have some inherent skill.

Having said that, it’s nice that you may set your own pace when learning to play the drums. Success requires determination, but you don’t have to feel under pressure to achieve it in a specific length of time. Your efforts will start to bear fruit sooner or later if you are just ready to give yourself the time you require.

Others might find it to be more time-consuming than they’re prepared to invest.


A musical instrument can be difficult to play. Just keep going; with a little perseverance and interest, you’ll get there in the end.

If you keep at it, in a few weeks you’ll reflect on how far your drumming has progressed and feel extremely happy of yourself.

Early on, aim for tiny victories. Learn some fundamental tunes, fills, and rhythms. Master them thoroughly before continuing on your upward journey

Even though the focus of this essay is on training oneself to play the drums, it’s a fantastic idea to at least take one or two lessons from a skilled drum teacher to get you started.

I hope your drumming studies go well. If you put in the effort today, you might be performing your first gig as a drummer in the next few months.

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