7 Reasons Senior Living Facilities Should Incorporate Drumming

respectful beats

Drumming is more than just music — it’s an engaging activity that is proven to reduce stress, alleviate pain and help keep you mentally active.  Research suggests that drumming is particularly beneficial to older adults and can even prolong symptoms of mentally degenerative diseases, such as Alzheimer’s.

This is why more and more senior citizen facilities offer drumming sessions in addition to more traditional activities such as dancing and art classes.   Drumming not only stimulates older adults’ cognitive abilities, it also offers socialization, aids memory and can restore gross/fine motor movement.

Here are 7 reasons why senior living facilities should incorporate drumming as an activity:

It’s Loud

Seniors with hearing trouble may not be able to hear traditional music volumes enough to enjoy it. A drum is loud, powerful and creates a sound that can be heard and felt.

It’s Simple

Just about any older adult can make a sound or create a basic rhythm with a hand drum. There are also instruments such as paddle drums, frame drums and mallet cuffs which are ideal for those who are lacking the physical strength to hold onto a drum while playing it.

It’s Expressive

Drumming is a form of expression that can act like an emotional anchor, letting residents ‘drum out’ their feelings. It can be a very effective self-expressive therapy which other activities might not have.

It’s Stimulating

Not only does drumming improve cognitive skills, it can also serve as a fantastic form of exercise.  The tactical use of rhythm engages seniors through vibration and sound, which in of itself stimulates the body.

Promotes Health & Wellness

Music is beneficial to the body and mind by increasing one’s mood and reducing stress. Drums are the perfect music therapy instrument for seniors because they offer ancillary health benefits which happen automatically while being in the moment.  I like to use the 3’cs to explain the health benefits.  Concentration, circulation and coordination.

It’s Surprisingly Peaceful

Thе drum саn also ѕimulаtе a ѕоft, rеlаxing, fаmiliаr hеаrt bеаt and serve аѕ gentle vibrаtiоnаl ѕtimulаtiоn. Try striking a drum and nоtiсе thе vibrаtiоnаl ѕеnѕаtiоnѕ thаt оссur. With the right timbre аnd frequency, it can indeed be vеrу rеlаxing.

It’s Fun

Drumming is not only therapeutic, it’s fun! Older adults and seniors love it because it gives them energy and makes them feel like a kid again. Jamming with other residents in a drum circle is a great way for them to have fun and be social simultaneously.

Add music along with the drumming and it is a sure way to create a positive, engaging activity for your retirement home.

For more info, please visit www.respectfulbeats.com

Steve Benedetto is an author/drummer and owner of Respectful Beats - an interactive drumming business serving senior communities throughout New England. A drummer since the age of 10, Steve enjoys creating customized drumming programs for retirement homes and taking the mission online to extend his audience He currently resides outside of Boston.

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