So proud to have been featured
on the cover of Drums Etc!
Drumming For Kids: The 5 Standards
SEE THE VIDEO HERE:
The concept of LTR (Life Through Rhythm) is to work on who we are as people both behind the kit and in everyday life. The rhythm of good habits done repeatedly over time creates huge results! With this approach, let’s think of the drum room as a Dojo. In there it’s not just about the martial arts, but about who you are once you step outside the door and into the world.
The 5 Standards was born from having so many young drummers come through my studio, and realizing they needed these qualities to get the most learning and fun out of the lessons. Whether they become drummers, lawyers, or athletes, the 5 Standards will arm you with some great tools for getting the most from anything you put your mind to. Many kids that want to check out drumming only do it for a short time before exploring the next adventure and that’s ok, not everyone is a life long drummer! However, I feel confident in a young student’s future knowing that they will take the 5 Standards into everything they do, and live it both behind the kit and going forward towards all their future endeavours.
Learning these at a young age creates habits that affect an entire lifetime of success! I have my young students memorize them, say them back to me unexpectedly (‘quick, name the 5 Standards, GO!’), and teach them to 3 people they know, because ‘when you teach, you learn twice’!
We live in the age of dramatic distraction, so this is a challenging one! Turning OFF your irrelevant technology while you practice is so important. When our brain is distraction free we can slip into alpha state, also known as The Zone. This is where your inner genius lives. Don’t let an addiction to distraction kill your best ideas and insights!
When I was a young drummer, I couldn’t wait to play. Sitting behind a Drumset with a pair of sticks in my hand it was irresistible… tap tap tap… tap tap tap… next thing I knew I was being severely yelled at by the very annoyed guitarist. ‘I’m trying to TUNE!’ he yelled. This is where I learned about the importance of when NOT to play! Behind the kit, listen to the band more than yourself. Beyond the kit, be someone that listens more than they speak.
3) TRY YOUR BEST / GIVE 100%
I always say to my students, mistakes are good! You will learn something by failing, and if you’re giving 100% sometimes that mistake can sound better than what you intended! This is called ‘wrong and strong’, but also about having a standard of giving all you have in everything you do, even when you don’t feel like it. (Especially then) This becomes a valuable habit, and grows a reputation of someone that brings their best game to anything they do.
4) DON’T WASTE TIME
Bruce Lee said ‘If you love life then don’t waste time, for that is what life is made of.’ We need to be in the habit if not wasting a second of the time we have to practice, and in all we do. Focus is a big part of not wasting time, the 5 standards are all connected and all help one another! Not wasting time also means staying in the present moment, not regretting the past or feeling worry about the future.
5) POSITIVE ATTITUDE
Always keep your PMA, Positive Mental Attitude! There are so many challenges we face in this instrument and in life, the habit of positivity will help in all areas. Think of your favorite drummer, the ATTITUDE and intensity they play with makes them who they are! There will be tough times ahead, keep your PMA at all times. Many top athletes are my inspiration to find the positive in any challenge.
Having high standards in everything you do is a great habit to start early. The way you do the little things, is the way you will do the big things! Drummers both old and young are working on and living the 5 Standards everyday, it’s a never ending journey of getting better!