Challenge Your Coordination Skills With This Drum Game

Challenge Your Coordination Skills With This Drum Game

Who doesn’t like drum games? They’re a great way to test and challenge yourself and your friends and family.

Today, on my Instagram Live lesson we played some fun drum games! These were actually excellent exercises develop your coordination skills, but can also translate to the drum set in fantastic ways. We could use these to come up with fun drum beat or fill ideas.

As you may recall, the game was about replacing notes played by our hands, with notes playing by our feet. Below are the simplified instructions to follow in order to play. Keep in mind that, if you don’t have a drum set, you can use your hands to tap on your lap, and feet to tap the floor.


  1. We start by playing simple Single Strokes (i.e. alternating hands) on our snare drum or lap, playing them as 16th notes (semiquavers)
  2. Then we replace one, or more, notes with a bass drum (or right foot) one at a time, repeating the exercise a few times over without making a mistake
  3. After that, we played a easy beginner drum beats (see previous blog post) for 3 bars and one of the above exercises on bar 4 (referred to as a 4 bar phrase)

Use a metronome to challenge yourself; try to do these really slowly, say at 40BPM, to really explore the space between the every note. Then, try them faster, and try not to slip up! 

Be sure to check out my YouTube channel for more content; I tend to post drum covers as well as drum lessons from time to time.

I’ve written a quick PDF with each game / exercise for you to download and have fun with. Grab it by clicking the link below.


If you want to learn more drum games, or are interested in learning to play drums, check out my drum lessons and drop me a line! Also, check out my drum book Concepts here and grab yourself a copy; it’s a great learning resource and helps support what I do.

Thanks, and see you online!

Nick x

5 Basic Drum Beats For Beginners

5 Basic Drum Beats For Beginners

Here’s a PDF with 5 great basic drum beats for you to have fun with. Learn them, practice them and use them to play along to your favourite tunes!

Beginner tips

If you’re a beginner, these are great drum beats to learn because they’re very common in everything from Pop to Rock! You’ll be able to use them to play along to massive songs from Wheatus’ Teenage Dirtbag and Taylor Swift’s Willow! Even if the beats on the latter songs are slightly different, they’re variations on the same theme, so they’re worth learning. Fancy learning more drum beats?


That said, these grooves are also a fantastic way to work on your coordination! And if you practice them, even without a practice pad, make sure you use a metronome as this is very important. These beats are a great way to work on your time if you try playing them slowly first, and then start speeding them up!

Chopzzz Pillowcase - Pillow gift for drummers

Products like the CHOPZzz Pillowcase are a great way to practice the drums and technique in a fun and different way.


If you’re interested in learning how to play drums, I have a few other articles which you might find helpful:


But again, if it’s lessons you’re after check out my drum lessons! I teach beginners to advanced students of all ages, skills and neurodiversity / S.E.N (i.e. people on the Autism spectrum, etc).




I hope this has been useful in helping you make more sense of drum beats in your favourite songs. Have fun using these basic drum beats to play along to your favourite tunes!


Lastly, if you fancy, check out my drum book Concepts; a great learning resource for drummers of all levels!


Thanks, and see you online!


Nick x

Beginner’s Drum Lesson: Developing a sense of groove

Beginner’s Drum Lesson: Developing a sense of groove

In this Beginner’s Drum Lesson we’ll explore how to make your drum beats sound more musical and groove better.

Has the following ever happened to you? You’re trying to learn a new beat, but something doesn’t sound quite right, like your bass drums or snare drums aren’t making sense in the context of what you’re trying to play. Sometimes this means you’re playing them at the wrong time, which can happen if you inadvertently play too many (or too few) hi hats between these.

The good news is that this isn’t uncommon! The bad news is, as you probably know, that it’s annoying as it breaks the flow of the groove… Frustration sets in. Furthermore, if you’re playing with a band and this happens, it will throw everyone off, making things sound messy! D’oh.

But the better news is that we can totally work on this! The methodology suggested in this beginner’s drum lesson will help you avoid these pitfalls by developing a stronger sense of groove. Not only that, but in the process, you’ll also benefit from reinforcing key skills (see Table below).

Beginner Drum Lesson – Table 1: Goals

Let’s get started.

Change Your Focus

What I’ve described above may be happening because your frame of reference (e.g. what you’re counting) might be your hi hat notes. So, we’re going to try to change your focus, and we’re going to do so by introducing this great bit of information, which I picked up from Colin Woolway, the man behind the great Drumsense books.

If you haven’t given it a thought, the central components of the drum set are as follows:

Beginner Drum Lesson – Table 2: Central components of the drum set

Interesting, right? This hints to the bass and the snare drums being the foundation of a drum beat.


In order to troubleshoot our grooves, let’s get a feel for playing them without the hi hats. This will help focus your attention on the core of the beat.

Exploring space and time

As your play without the hi hats, listen carefully the foundation of the groove, the bass and snare, exploring the space between these. What’s the stripped-down groove making you feel? What image is projecting in your head? Once you establish this, try the following.

Set your metronome to the following rates, and play the stripped down groove (without hi hats) to get different references.

  • Quarter notes (crotchets)
  • Eighth notes (quavers)
  • Sixteenth notes (semi-quavers)

The point here is to get used to hearing the groove relative to different subdivisions. In this case, the metronome clicks act as your hi hats. Once you’ve become better acquainted with the grooves,  reintroduce the hi hats.

Which beats should I use?

You can try this method with any drum beats you’re currently learning, but I’ve also included some examples in the downloadable PDF for you to try out too. They vary in difficulty, so start with the easy ones first.

I hope this helps! You can also subscribe to the newsletter and receive regular updates and articles like this beginner’s drum lesson as well as other educational resources.

Nick x

Download the pdf