Hemiplegia and Drumming — Scope | Disability forum
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Hemiplegia and Drumming

RaeWitter
RaeWitter Member Posts: 15 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 :)
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Comments

  • Richard_Scope
    Richard_Scope Posts: 3,105

    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
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  • atlas46
    atlas46 Member Posts: 826 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_Scope
    Richard_Scope Posts: 3,105

    Scope community team

    @atlas46 I bow to your drumming knowledge! :):) 
    Scope
    Specialist Information Officer and Cerebral Palsy Programme Lead

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  • RaeWitter
    RaeWitter Member Posts: 15 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!!!
  • Stayce
    Stayce Member Posts: 748 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
  • RaeWitter
    RaeWitter Member Posts: 15 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!:)
  • atlas46
    atlas46 Member Posts: 826 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.
  • niceboots
    niceboots Member Posts: 196 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!
  • RaeWitter
    RaeWitter Member Posts: 15 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?:)
  • RaeWitter
    RaeWitter Member Posts: 15 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 :)
  • niceboots
    niceboots Member Posts: 196 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.
  • niceboots
    niceboots Member Posts: 196 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?
  • Stayce
    Stayce Member Posts: 748 Pioneering
    edited July 2019
    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


  • Reg
    Reg Member Posts: 109 Pioneering
    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 !
    Reg

    I am a Scope volunteer.
  • Richard_Scope
    Richard_Scope Posts: 3,105

    Scope community team

    Hi @ben62 thanks for posting! Good to meet you @Reg

    Scope
    Specialist Information Officer and Cerebral Palsy Programme Lead

    'Concerned about another member's safety or wellbeing? Flag your concerns with us.

    Want to tell us about your experience in the community? Talk to our chatbot and let us know. 
  • Chloe_Scope
    Chloe_Scope Scope Posts: 10,557 Disability Gamechanger
    Welcome to the community @ben62! Glad you have found us and thank you for sharing this with us!
    Scope

  • ben62
    ben62 Member Posts: 9 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

  • atlas46
    atlas46 Member Posts: 826 Pioneering
    Hi @ben62

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

    Best wishes
  • RaeWitter
    RaeWitter Member Posts: 15 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 ?

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