Working Musician

FelixWillows
FelixWillows Member Posts: 5
I have arthritis around the first joint of my index finger.
This is a new development for me.

I am 64 years old and am a professional drummer. I’ve read various thoughts regarding exercising the area involved but I am wondering if by playing my instrument I am likely to aggravate the condition.

The drumstick is held at a fulcrum point provided by the joint of the index finger and the thumb. Good technique requires that the stick is allowed to rebound upon impact with the drum but there is still a fair amount of ‘jarring’ involved.

I don’t intend to stop playing my instrument but I am wondering what the long term…or short term effect may be. At the moment I would describe playing as being very uncomfortable.

Thank you for any advice.

FW.

Comments

  • stickywicket
    stickywicket Member Posts: 27,106
    edited 30. Nov -1, 00:00
    Hello FW. It's good to meet you though I'm sorry you had to find us.

    I can see that drumming and arthritis (I presume osteo?) would not be easy companions. I can also see that you'll want to continue with the drumming. As a general rule anything very repetitive isn't a good idea for arthritic joints but, if you're in the early stages, there might be ways round it.

    We're not medically qualified to give advice and I think your best bet would be a physiotherapist. Your GP might be willing to refer you but, if not, in your situation, as this is your livelihood, I'd go privately and I'd ensure it was one who specialised in musculo-skeletal problems. (Yellow Pages usually gives some indication.) What's often required is some exercises that will strengthen the muscles as strong muscles support the joints and so help to keep them in good nick. You might feel yours should be strong to start with but, with repetitive actions it can be the opposite muscles that need working on. Arthritis Care has a booklet on 'Exercise' ('Publications & Resources' grey tab at the top right of the page) but you might need something more specialised.

    You'll probably get more replies if you copy this thread to the Living With Arthritis forum as more people look in there. I hope it works out well for you.
  • FelixWillows
    FelixWillows Member Posts: 5
    edited 30. Nov -1, 00:00
    Many thanks for your help.

    FW.
  • dreamdaisy
    dreamdaisy Member Posts: 31,520
    edited 30. Nov -1, 00:00
    Hello, it's nice to meet you and I hope we can help with information and support. I am not a great believer in things such as glucosamine, cod liver oil etc but if you are experiencing very early-onset OA (and not in too many joints) then it may be worth giving supplements a go: it's worth chatting this over with your doctor.

    Drumming eh? I envy you that skill; I can feel a rhythm but I cannot create one! My neighbour's son is a drummer with some 'popular musicians' and I watched him practising one day at the bottom of her garden (using practice drums and headphones): utterly wonderful to watch! I wish you well. DD

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