An Introduction to Hand Technique


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Modern hand technique is a synthesis of the ideas established by early innovators such as Billy Gladstone, Sanford Moeller and George Lawrence Stone.

Collectively, the fundamental principles that drummers such as these helped establish represent the most practical, efficient and ergonomic ways of articulating the drumsticks and, in response to the demands of modern drum set playing, they have been refined and adapted over time, evolving into the range of modern hybrid techniques in use today.

So whilst based on classic principles, the materials presented in this module will, if understood and diligently practiced, equip you with a highly effective set of technical tools with which to meet the challenges of contemporary drum set performance.

Broadly speaking, we can organise hand technique into two categories: systems based on formal motion and systems based on informal motion.

To provide a basic distinction here, the principles of articulating the stick using formal motion are very similar to those of bouncing a ball.  Whereas, the principles of articulating the stick using informal motion are much more similar to those of cracking a whip.

And whilst in one way, they could be viewed as fundamentally different, relaxed fluid movements which incorporate the wrist, elbow shoulders and fingers in an extremely natural way, to supplement the primary movements, are core principles common to both.