A new fitness craze is sweeping the nation. It doesn’t involve fancy steps or special equipment – well, except for maybe the drumsticks.
‘Drums Alive’ classes at gyms and senior centers combine aerobic movements with steady, powerful drum beats. But instead of beating on a drum, participants use their drumsticks on a large exercise ball. Sometimes they beat on their neighbor’s exercise ball. And sometimes they dance around the balls or do squats or lunges.
“It’s much easier to do than Zumba,” said Shawn Bannon, a Drums Alive instructor in Baltimore, Maryland, comparing it to the dance-based Zumba workout that has made a splash in the past decade.
Drumming in a group – whether on actual drums or exercise balls – fosters a sense of community, advocates say. It benefits the body, relieves stress and improves mood, says founder Carrie Ekins of Germany.
“You feel like a rock star,” said Jen Dagati, licensed partner of Drums Alive in the United States and Canada. “It’s challenging, it’s exhilarating, and you just have a euphoric feeling when you are done drumming. It’s something everyone can do.”