Healthy Beginnings

Why Do We Drum?

We drum because it’s fun! That is a given. There is something very rewarding about the sound, feel, effort and the unifying experience created within a community drum circle. I am a long-time professional drum set player, but this all-inclusive communal drumming that I am referring to is very different than playing in a band focused more on entertainment.

Current research shows that specialized group drumming provides many health, wellness and therapeutic bene ts. Experiencing steady, rhythmic drumming improves cognitive brain function – increasing our ability to hold attention and focus. This is so good for both kids and adults, especially as technology pulls our attention everywhere.

Drumming increases cancer- fighting white blood cells in the immune system and decreases stress, anxiety, blood pressure and pain. It is a “Whole Brain” activity that provides the rare experience of activating and balancing both sides of the brain simultaneously. Consequently, drumming can bene t people dealing with cancer, Parkinson’s, stroke, PTSD and many other conditions.

In her book, “When the Drummers Were Women”, Layne Redmond expressed that it is our primordial desire to get back to our roots of drumming. Archeological findings con rm that many cultures have drummed since ancient times.

Drumming is fascinating to me. As a professional drummer of nearly four decades and an educator/facilitator for the last 20 years, I am continually inspired and motivated by helping my students gain a deeper understanding of themselves through drumming. From at-risk kids to adults, whether I facilitated in schools, juvenile treatment centers or at corporate team building events, I continue to enjoy the challenge and rewards of bringing folks together collectively and communally in mind, body and spirit through drumming. From a science point of view, our ancestors did not understand why they drummed, but they certainly knew intuitively. Drum on!

Liz Broscoe is a professional drummer/percussionist, author, adjunct faculty at Lake Tahoe Community College, teaching artist for schools and at-risk youth, and a corporate team building facilitator. For more information, call 530-318-2330 or visit