The Loop

Often, the most simple exercises prove to be the most effective.

I call this one “The Loop.”

Here’s the sequence:

  • 2 measures of 8th notes
  • 2 measures of 8th note triplets
  • 2 measures of 16th notes
  • 2 measures of 8th note triplets

It will improve your timing and transitions between the rates.

Practice it with a metronome.

Play it at 60 bpm, or even slower, and really try to feel the  s p a c e  between the individual notes.

Don’t let the simplicity fool you. Playing it slow is surprisingly hard.

As with almost all exercises and drills, I urge you to focus on clarity, relaxation and control — not on speed. Your speed will increase automatically,  once you can play this exercise relaxed, and feel more confident about changing between the rates.

Treat it like a meditation: make time for it, if only 10 minutes a day and allow it to become a habit. You don’t even need a drum kit or practice pad for it. Just play with your hands on your thighs and tap your right foot. Drop your shoulders, focus on your breath, and if you use drum sticks, relax your grip as much as possible without sacrificing stick control.

Note: In the video I play a quarter note Bass Drum, but you can also “march” to the beat and play the Kick on 1&3, and step the Hi-Hat on 2&4.