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You Mad, Bro? 10 Ways Drumming Helps Manage Anger (and Keeps Us Out of Jail)

Published by Kristin Stancato on 26th Sep 2014

We all pick up drums for our own reasons. Some of us like to jam with friends, while others prefer a solo career covering favorite songs in a basement. Then there are the drummers who love the stage, or those who sit around in a circle, healing the earth and others. Drumming is fun, it is exercise, it is creative, and it is exceptionally therapeutic. Put 100 drummers in a room together and ask them about how drumming has changed their lives, and you’ll probably just hear 100 drummers drumming, but, underneath that roaring rhythm is a collective understanding that drumming inspires plenty of epiphanies, encourages flexibility of thought, and even brings about feelings of sanity, especially when dealing with a world full of disappointments, frustration and angst.

In short, you can’t deny how great it can feel to pound away on a drum when you’re really mad.

Anger management is the ability to refrain from harming yourself or others when faced with incendiary personal, professional or global situations that tick you off. It is the ability to process annoyance in a healthy way. Anger management may be the only thing that keeps you from disturbing the peace of the person who keeps parking in your spot, or taking your lunch from the fridge at work. But, in learning to manage your anger, how many times have you been encouraged to pick up a drum? We’re going to say never, which is why in our expert way, we just want to point out that drums are essential for anger management, both in and out of therapeutic setting because you get to HIT things for fun.

How Drums Discourage Angry Outbursts That Will Potentially Land You In Jail:

  • Physically banging on drums releases stress, anxiety and negative emotions, especially when done rhythmically.
  • You have to focus on the rhythm, not the person, because you’re “in the moment” and that person is NOT going to mess up the ONE THING you do RIGHT (ahem).
  • Drumming forces you to keep your hands (and feet) to yourself.
  • There is no “fight or flight” with drumming – just a creative expression of anger that sometimes varies in intensity due to the person’s face flashing before your eyes.
  • You can pretend you are one of your idols, one who never has to deal with “that” person or circumstance again, because you’re a drumming GOD/DESS.
  • Drummers are just super happy when drumming, because, we’re drummers. Puppies are happy because they’re puppies. Living up to a divine purpose is awesome.
  • People are much less likely to mess with anyone who is sitting around, hitting a drum or drums. Drumming is loud, fairly confusing to watch, and, you’re drilling YOUR rhythm into their minds. Mind control is almost as much fun as drumming.
  • “Air Drumming” is almost as baffling as watching a drummer drum, especially for those who aren’t rhythmically savvy and/or in your head.
  • If you simply make drum noises (BA DA BUM BUM) when you’re frustrated or annoyed, people will leave you alone, especially the louder and faster you vocally drum.
  • You get to hit things. With your hands, sticks or mallets. Come ON.

The experts say that anger is a healthy emotion, and that learning to express it without harming yourself, other people or other things is the key to anger management. The drummers say, “chill, man, let’s jam,” or some other variation of the same sentiment. We can’t help but draw the parallel between the two. Drummers are happy people, or they’re in the process of becoming happy, usually by drumming.

As the old saying goes: bad days come and go, but, drumming is forever . Don’t let your anger manage you, manage your anger! Pick up a drum, hit it, and get happy.