5 Best PDF Beginner Lessons For Drums!

Posted by Mike Schumacher

Do you want to learn how to play the drums with step-by-step training?

Are you trying to find starter drum lessons that will show you the basic basics of how to play the drum set?

If so, you’ve come to the right place! We’ve assembled a quick starter guide to help you get you playing on the drums as well as provide free PDFs (at the end of the post) for practicing on your own.

Be warned that you might get addicted to drumming! But it’s a healthy addiction, don’t worry.

A basic guide to counting and playing drums

We’ll start by teaching the principles of counting, and after that demonstrates how you can gradually construct a beat that incorporates the hi-hats, snare drum, and bass drum. 

But first some first principles:

How does one grip the drum sticks? We must first understand how to hold drumsticks properly in order, to begin with, our training. This is absolutely vital since this is where everything starts. Proper grip minimizes stress and provides you the opportunity to have fun with more speed, power, control, and endurance.

Drum Set Posture – the way we sit at a drumset is a crucial factor that will help you not only in your drumming abilities but in your overall health.

Drum Tuning Troubleshooting – Are you hearing unwanted buzzes or other noises coming out of your set? There are a couple of tips we have devised to troubleshoot what may be the problem with your drum set.

Drum Warm-ups and Extends – Before you sit down at your set and drum out the demons, be sure to stretch and warm up slowly before bashing away. This is vital to not wear out your muscles too much. I would start with finger stretches, arm stretches, and some standing up reaching for the stars.


Counting to four is the first place we want to start with if we want to play drums. 

1 2 3 4  1 2 3 4… etc. All counts are equally spaced.

Now let’s put the hi-hat on each of those notes, the bass drum on 1 and 3 and the snare drum on 2 and 4.

Here we have our first beat.

Now for a second beat, let’s put another hi-hat note between the bass drum and snare drum.

Singles and Doubles

You will progress very rapidly by doing this. 

Singles are alternating strokes: RLRL. Doubles are two strokes with each hand: RRLL

Dedicate at least thirty minutes a day to practicing just singles and doubles in the following way.

  1. Practice with a metronome: Start at a moderate tempo, 60-80 bpm and play eighth notes (this means two notes inside each click). Then raise the tempo slowly. Reach for the goal of 140-160 bpm by the end of the week.
  2. Practice with a metronome: Do the same exercise as above but try different subdivisions. This means instead of eighth notes, try quarter notes. Try sixteenth notes. You can even try triplets!
  3. Without a metronome: Start very slow and speed up as cleanly and smoothly as you can. Try this at different dynamics (softer or louder).

General tips to good practicing

It is better to practice thirty minutes every day than 3 hours and thirty minutes one day a week. Make certain you don’t jam random beats and call it practice.

It won’t make you much better to do this due to the fact that you’ll wind up playing the very same beats you can currently do.

Make sure you keep it easy; the downfall of the majority of drummers is attempting to prove themselves with some complex fill that includes nothing to the music.

Comprehend your part as a drummer

24K Motown & Soul Band singing and performing live for a new video, wearing gold jackets and tinted sunglasses - bringing style and class to the lit dancefloor.

This tip is vital when once you’ve learned a bit of technique and all you want to do is solo around the drum kit.

We need to understand our role as a drummer, which is to improve the entirety of the music instead of the drums. Simple and effective is usually enough!

We should love trying to play in the ‘pocket’, this means just playing very solidly and tastefully.

Use a metronome when practicing. This will make sure your internal time is rock solid. Your job as a drummer is to make the rest of the band sound amazing.

The timing needs to be in the pocket. The metronome is on the whole time I practice.

To make it even more difficult, provide yourself only beat 1 of 4 – actually evaluates your ability to keep time.

Practice SLOW Speed comes from practicing a pattern annoyingly slow. It is easy to play quickly when you have actually practiced slow.

Mon, Wed, Fri, Sun

Monthly schedule

1) Choose one rudiment to work on. Start with single stroke roll, double stroke roll, paradiddle. (10 minutes w/ metronome)

2) Find some coordination exercise and work on that (10 minutes w/ metronome)

3) Find a song you desire to play and attempt to play along with it. Or do some work to listening and transcribing the song. (10 minutes w/ metronome).

Now without further ado check out these free drum lesson PDFs from VirtualDrumming.com. We’ve assembled our 5 favorites that are perfect for beginner and intermediate drummers.

  1. Snare Drum Double Stroke Workout
  2. Basic Rock Beats
  3. Shuffle Beats
  4. Funk Beats
  5. John Bonham Beats

Take your drumming to the next level!

Here are a number of articles (for free!) to help you with your drumming.

6 Great Beginner Jazz Songs to Learn on Drums

Beginner Drum Note Reading Exercises And Explanation

Beginner Drummer Drills

And if you are still feeling like you want to take your drumming to the next level, consider our beginner course!

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