Index Finger Hurts While Playing Drums!

Ok so the index finger on my right hand, which is the hand I use to hit the hi-hat, has a lot of callouses from playing so much. I've only been playing for 4 months so I guess it's normal to get blisters like that so I just put band-aids over it to reduce the stick rubbing against my finger. But now I feel like I have arthritis in my index finger when I hold my stick, and I'm only 16!
I think it may be the way I'm holding my stick that could be causing all these problems but I watched a video on how to hold it on youtube and I thought I was holding it properly.
Any suggestions to prevent the pain is greatly appreciated :)


My first thought is that, while you may be holding the STICK correctly, you may not be holding your HAND correctly. I see this in my beginning students a lot.

The proper position for your hand is such that if you drew a straight line from the juncture of your thumb and the rest of your hand straight up your arm, the line would and at the juncture of your arm and the rest of your body.

A lot of beginners hold their hand with the thumb up. Doing so will put a lot of pressure on your finger's middle joint because it is constantly being pounded by your stick.

Try turning your hand over. Not only might it eliminate the pain, but it will give you a much stronger grip on the stick.

By the way, have you tried our Almost Free Drum Tabs? They will help you to play your favorite songs accurately.

Best Wishes,

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Jun 11, 2012
How to avoid injury to your hands
by: Barry

Check out Tommy Igoe's Life time warm up.

Tommy is one of the best drummers in the world.
This DVD is packed with a lot of great info. to make you into a better drummer, and how to avoid injuries. Your probably holding your sticks too tight. Your grip should be just tight enough so the sticks wont fly out of your hands. Tommy's DVD will explain in more detail what I'm talking about.

Also proper warming up can be a big help.

Iv'e been playing for 7 years and do not have any callouses on my hands.

You can purchase this DVD used on Amazon for around $14.00.

I hope this helps you.

P.S. I always rub candle wax on the gripping part of my sticks,it helps give you more control with a very lose grip.

My email address is
If you have any questions.........

Nov 12, 2009
by: Anonymous

Hi, I am a Fellow drummer and have the same problem. the only difference is I have been a drummer for about 5 years and i know im holding the stick correctly for in my years of practice i have had instruction on how to improve my percussive abilities and that problem was corrected long ago. im afraid i am developing osteoarthritis. all i can do for now is take some alieve and keep going

Mar 18, 2009
Thanks! Pic please?
by: Anonymous

Hey Lynne,
I greatly appreciate your answer! Thanks a lot for it
I'm a little confused as to hold it, I'm bad at understanding your text sorry lol.
Is there anyway you could find a picture of someone holding a drumstick the proper way?
Thanks a lot as always!



I don't have a pic, but let me put it another way:

The knuckles between your hand and your fingers should be facing the ceiling, not the wall.

Does that help?


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