Subcategory

 Loading... Please wait...

Search Our Blog

Subjects & Authors

Djembe Drums

Taking the Leap and Getting Over Your Drum Circle Anxiety

Posted by Kristin Stancato on

Social anxiety is a problem we all face from time to time. It can rear its head in a “stage fright” manner, or in the total avoidance of any public situation. If you’ve ever had butterflies before a first date, an interview or before heading off to college, you’ve had a taste of social anxiety. Others may experience a more panicked state than just a fluttery stomach when faced with social situations, and the thought of even a friendly drum circle is enough to send them back to bed.

We know, of course, drum circles aren’t for everyone. The whole world, despite our deepest wishes, isn’t ready to grab a djembe or a tambourine and play within a group of people. Not only are you supposed to be in the company of strangers, but, you’re also expected to play an instrument. You may be sensitive to loud noises, feel you have no rhythm or really just hate the idea of a stereotypical drum circle. There’s a lot going on there, and we respect that.

But, there are others who may have walked by a drum circle and felt a pull in that direction. Maybe they’ve been invited to a community drum jam and just sat on the sidelines, tapping their toes or mentally pulsing with the beat. They’ve had the benefits of being near a drum circle or jam, but, they hesitate to jump in and join the fun. For those who want to get into the drumming action and need a little push to get past the anxiety, we have some thoughts for you:

  • Drumming helps you find a path to self-expression alongside a non-judgmental crowd who are all there to just feel the groove: self-expression is a voice for relieving anxiety.
  • Knowing you are not alone when you hesitate to get into the rhythm helps encourage a feeling of belonging and social acceptance with others in the same boat.
  • Banging, tapping or hitting a drum or percussion instrument is a way to feel powerful, engaged and in control of your life. When you do that with a group of people, the feeling of a interrelated empowerment can overcome you.
  • Drumming brings you back into the present, where the anxiety-driven brain has an easier time focusing on the task or drum at hand, not on a whirlwind of thoughts or fear of the social situation you’ve just landed in.
  • Group drumming illustrates group dynamics and communication through collective rhythm-making. It gives everyone a voice who wants to stand out, and it allows others to blend together in a chorus.

  • Any community activity like drumming brings together people with more common ground than networking mixers. You could make a rhythm buddy, just by showing up!
  • By the time the drumming has ended, you’ll wonder why you didn’t take that leap sooner. After all, you’ve had the image in your head for so long, and it was there for a reason – you need to drum.

Social anxiety cannot necessarily be cured by a drum circle, and we are not professional therapists with any amount of training that could say otherwise. But, we do understand our own reactions to drumming, drum circles and drum jams. We talk to others with similar experiences, as well as those with very different perspectives on the whole group drumming vibe. We see the difference in people after their first drum circle, and how it can be a great way to encourage less anxiety in social situations.

Perhaps the best part is that there’s no harm in trying your hand at drum circles or group drumming, and you may be delighted to discover how much you never knew you needed a drum circle in your life.

View Comments


Go Global: Adding World Percussion to a Drum Set

Drummers all have one thing in common: we love exploring the sound of percussion. That’s why we always want more drums, cymbals and why we love accent percussion. We covet our case full of drum sticks, mallets and brushes, and we cannot wait each year for the latest bass pedal release. We are always evolving our skills, our “sound” [...]

Continue Reading →


Posture and Pain: a Drummer’s Biggest Challenge?

There’s nothing worse than a shooting pain in your lower back or shoulder in the middle of playing your drum set. You’re in the groove, doin’ your thing and ZOW! You’re in agony! Plenty of drummers experience the natural aches and pains of drumming, like sore muscles, blisters on the fingers or hands or blurred vision from over-drumming (it [...]

Continue Reading →


Decorating Djembes and Hand Drums with Henna

Some hand drums just stand out above the others, whether with their sound, size or even just the way the drum looks. Most hand drum players start with finding the “right” sound of a drum, whether a djembe, doumbek or a set of bongos. But, appearance can always be a factor that sways even the best drummer – we’re [...]

Continue Reading →


Djembes and Drums for Modern Worship? YES!

Plenty of people consider the djembe drum a staple instrument in drum circles or in performances that highlight African culture. These popular hand drums are also responsible for exciting experiences in schools, for motivating employees in team building exercises and forging connections within communities. So, why is it so shocking to see a djembe drum in a place of worship?For [...]

Continue Reading →


Looking for a Better Drum Sound? Check Your Drum Heads!

Because drummers like to be different, we tend to gravitate toward the complexities of life. Such as choosing the right drum or drums for the music we want to play. Everyone knows that drums come in all sorts of different styles, sizes, brands and configurations. There are hand drums like djembes, doumbeks and congas or drum set and component [...]

Continue Reading →


Developing the Pulse: the Natural Beat of the Drummer

Some people have it, some people don’t: a pulse. No, that’s not true, everyone has a pulse, but not everyone knows that.Of course, we’re speaking rhythm, not your actual pulse… but that’s a good place to start. If you put your hand on your heart, your neck or wrist, you can easily feel your heart beating, or your pulse. [...]

Continue Reading →


Seeing Double: The Bongos and You

Are you a bongocero, a fan of the bongos, a lover of paired percussion? We sure are. But, we get that not everyone wants to sit behind a drum set and pound away on snares, toms and cymbals. Just like not everyone wants to sit on a box and play the cajon, or walk around with a djembe [...]

Continue Reading →


Which Mallets are Right for Me?

There are as many mallets to choose from as there are keys on a marimba, and really, there are probably more than that. For anyone who is just getting into the wonderful world of idiophone percussion instruments, like the marimba, xylophone or vibraphone, you’ve probably already realized there is a lot more to these instruments than you first thought. [...]

Continue Reading →


When Should You Start Teaching Drums?

Being a drummer, percussionist or rhythmic artist has a lot of perks. You get to have the entire spotlight on your talent, be seen as the center of the band or the raging force in the drumming community. You are the greatest thing since music was first heard and your skills on that djembe, the congas or behind the [...]

Continue Reading →


Most Viewed

Latest Tweets

    View Cart Go To Checkout