August 16, 2017

Drums Alive®

 New CNHP ASU Logo

J.E. Camp MSN, APRN, AGCNS-BC, Edited by Linda Tate, PhD, APRN, ACNS-BC

Arkansas State University

Is it warm where you are? The temperature outside may be hot enough to melt the pavement but it is still hot enough to have to rethink outside jogging.  If you are looking for indoor ways to work or if you like to exercise with your friends, Drums Alive® may be a great option. This is a music-based program which is grounded in science.

Drums Alive® takes place in a class room full of bright colored, large inflated rubber balls which sit neatly on top of small baskets. To begin class, everyone sits in a chair, in front of their “ball” drum.  All are given drumsticks and small, pool noodles.  The teacher, Mrs. Samantha Hollis, led the group while everyone else followed her directions.  Everyone got to “beat” the drum and even use a couple of dance steps, all to the cadence of the very upbeat and entertaining music.

Drums Alive® helped to work up a sweat and provided a good workout. Exercising in a class like this can raise the heart rate, increase breathing and provide added health benefits that can result from such exercise if done consistently.  The health benefits can include better heart health through stress management, blood fat and sugar reduction.  One study determined that drumming “is a worthy alternative to more traditional forms of exercise (De La Rue, Draper, Potter & Smith, 2013, p. 868).”  De La Rue et al (2013) pointed out that this was true for their study with rock/pop. Romeo, Coburn, Brown & Galphin (2016, p. 35) study results showed “heavy metal drumming” met certain guidelines for aerobic fitness. While participants in the studies were younger adults, according to the handout from Drums Alive©, participants can benefit “whether [you] are young, old, healthy or ill (UAMS COANE, 2017).”

If you are looking for exercise for you or for your patients that is fun and evidence-based, then Drums Alive® may be for you.   These classes are held at many Centers on Aging across Arkansas:  For information contact:

Samantha Hollis, BSN, RN

Drums Alive® Trainer




De La Rue, S. E., Draper, S. B., Potter, C. R., & Smith, M. S. (2013). Energy expenditure in rock/pop drumming.  International journal of sports medicine, 34(10), 868-872.  Retrieved from

Drums Alive. (2017). Discover the drummer in you.  Retrieved from http://www.drums-

Romero, B., Coburn, J., Brown, L. & Galphin, A. (2016). Metabolic demands of heavy metal

drumming. International Journal of Kinesiology and Sports Science, 4(3), pp. 32-36.

Retrieved from

The University of Arkansas for Medical Sciences (UAMS) Center on Aging-Northeast

(COANE). (n.d.). Drums Alive®. Little Rock, AR: UAMS Donald W. Reynolds Institute

on Aging.

Google links to the song information: