Drumming Your Way to Good Mental Health

When we are faced with challenging situations or emotions, it’s easy to get stuck in a cycle of negative thoughts and feelings. Sometimes, these thoughts and feelings prevent us from taking action, leaving us feeling paralyzed and unable to move forward. As a mental health provider and music therapist, I’ve found that drumming can be a powerful tool for inspiring people to take action and move forward in their lives.

Here are some of the benefits of drumming:

Move “Stuck Energy” and Gain New Insights

Drumming can help us release pent-up emotions and energy that may be holding us back. When we drum, we create a physical vibration that can move through our bodies and help us release tension and stress. This physical release can also help us gain new insights and perspectives on our situation, allowing us to move forward with more clarity and focus.

I talk about this a little more in the following video:

Grounding and Centering

Drumming can also be a grounding and centering experience. When we drum, we create a steady, repetitive rhythm that can help us feel more connected to our bodies and the present moment. This can be particularly helpful for people who struggle with anxiety or who find it difficult to stay present in the moment.

Energizing and Motivating

Drumming can also be an energizing and motivating experience. When we drum, we create a sense of forward momentum that can help us feel more motivated and inspired to take action in our lives. This can be particularly helpful for people who are feeling stuck or stagnant in their personal or professional lives.

How I Use Drumming in My Work

Experience some of the benefits of drumming. Image of people playing hand drums with a quote from Mickey Hart saying, "The voice of the drum is a spirit thing."

In my work as a music therapist and counselor, I’ve found that drumming can be particularly effective with young adults and adults. I often use drumming as a way to help people connect with their emotions and release pent-up energy that may be contributing to their mental health challenges. I also use drumming as a way to help people explore new perspectives and gain clarity on their situation.

If you’re interested in exploring the benefits of drumming for your own mental health, there are a few ways to get started. You can try drumming on your own, either with a hand drum or a drumming app or video. You can also look for local drum circles or drumming classes in your area.

Overall, drumming can be a powerful tool for improving your mental health and well-being. Whether you’re looking to release pent-up emotions, ground and center yourself, or find new motivation and inspiration, drumming can help you move forward in your life with greater clarity and focus.


Effects of Group Drumming Interventions on Anxiety, Depression, Social Resilience and Inflammatory Immune Response among Mental Health Service Users by Daisy Fancourt, Rosie Perkins, Sara Ascenso, Livia A. Carvalho, Andrew Steptoe, Aaron Williamon

Complementary Therapy for Addiction: “Drumming Out Drugs” by Michael Winkelman PhD, MPH

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