How To Have Good Posture On The Drums

Having a good posture on the drums is one of the first things you should learn as a beginner. Not only will good posture help you stay healthy, but it will also improve your technique.

When playing drums you use the shoulder muscles, triceps muscles, forearm muscles, calf muscles, and shin muscles, among others. Naturally, it’s very important to have good posture so you don’t strain and stress your muscles which can lead to health problems.

Many drummers have back problems, probably because of poor posture and not setting up the drum kit and the drum throne correctly. The sooner you realize that you need good posture, the sooner you can become a better, well-rounded drummer and save yourself a lot of pain.

At a Glance

  • Your drum throne should be the same height as the top of your knee when standing so that when you sit, your legs are slightly inclined downward. Also, avoid drum thrones with backrests as they promote bad posture.
  • Sit up straight, not on your tailbone. This way, your hamstrings will stretch properly without any strain in the process.
  • Next, you need to position your feet properly and close enough so that you’re not making a bigger effort than you should while reaching for the pedals. Make small tweaks to find the exact and perfect position for the hi-hat and kick pedal.
  • Lastly, relax your arms, keep them close to your sides, and keep your elbows tucked in. This ensures you retain power while not using excess energy.
  • The two main problems drummers are facing are back pain and hearing loss. So, make sure to work on proper posture while drumming and get some earplugs, noise-isolating headphones, or IEMs (in-ear monitors).

1. Adjust the Drum Throne

One of the most important modifications you should make is adjusting the drum throne height. In general, your drum throne should be the same height as the top of your knee while standing next to it. When you place your feet on the kick and hi-hat pedals, your legs should be slightly inclined downwards.

There are also many different types of drum thrones on the market, and the ones to avoid are the drum thrones with backrests. These drum thrones promote bad posture, something that can be hard to fix if you haven’t done it correctly for many years. Instead, try to get a normal drum throne without a backrest. When it comes to rotation, some of them do rotate, but this comes down to personal preference.

2. Sit Up Straight

Now that the drum throne is set up correctly, half the work is done. The second important thing is that you have to sit up and not sit on your tailbone. This will ensure that the hamstrings are stretched correctly and you won’t strain them.

3. Positioning Your Feet on The Drums

The next thing you should work on is positioning your feet on the pedals correctly. Your hi-hat pedal and kick pedal need to be reached comfortably without any movement constraints. And the most important tip I can give you here is that playing the pedals with the foot must be comfortable for you.

If you are making a bigger effort than you should while reaching for the pedals, then it’s time to move them closer or further away from your sitting position. Always remember to continue positioning and making small tweaks until you find a perfectly comfortable position.

4. Relax your arms

Your arms are doing most of the work when drumming so make sure they are relaxed and not using excess energy. Keep them close to your sides with the elbows tucked in to maintain power while playing. If you raise them higher or flay them to the side too much, you’re just wasting energy and not gaining anything in the process.

Health Benefits And Problems of Playing Drums

There are a lot of benefits to playing drums, but if not done correctly, you might experience problems as well. Two really important problems are the ones that I talked about, where you develop a bad posture that leads to back injuries and pain, and the other one is hearing loss. So, you should eliminate the problems and enjoy the benefits by having a good posture and wearing earplugs or noise-isolating headphones.

Some studies show that playing drums reduces stress and anxiety, which are very common problems these days. Drumming promotes overall well-being while also improving your mood. Playing drums also burns around 300 calories per hour depending on your exertion level while drumming. So it can also be considered a workout, and it’s one of the most fun workouts there are.


If you are a self-taught drummer or maybe a beginner, this topic might have slipped your mind, but as soon as you start thinking about good posture on the drums, the better. Sometimes it can be hard to adjust the way you play after you get used to it after years and years of playing the drums. Also, keep in mind that not only does good posture promote healthy well-being, but it also helps with technique, making you a better drummer.

Mike O'Connor
Mike O'Connor

I've been playing drums for over 18 years. I work as both a session drummer and a drum teacher, and I love to share my knowledge and tips on this site. You can also find me on the Electronic Drum Advisor YouTube channel.

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