It’s no surprise that a comfortable practice space can increase your motivation to practice more. This space should be a cozy room or corner that you can retreat to without too many things to interrupt your time. When I was in my early 20s, I had my drums setup in a basement right next to a furnace and water heater. I remember how difficult it was to spend an hour in that cold concrete room without wanting to leave. I literally had to force myself to spend lengthy amounts of time practicing.
Since then, I’ve been lucky to have better spaces to practice in, but sometimes that cold, dark basement room is the only option. I have discovered that adding a few cozy elements to your practice space can keep you there longer and with less distraction. Here are some tips for easy things you can do to make your practice space a more comfortable environment that will fuel your motivation to practice more.
Lighting is Key
You may have never thought of this but the lighting you use in your room will make a big difference in your ability to focus and concentrate. If you have fluorescent lighting in your space, that has got to go. These types of lights flicker at a very fast speed which is often unnoticeable until you start feeling the effect of it. There are a number of negative health effects from prolonged exposure to fluorescent lights. They can include:
- Migraines and headaches
- Eye strain
- Increased stress and anxiety
- Mental fatigue and difficulty concentrating
Natural light or light that mimics sunlight is the best option. If you have a window in your practice space then you’re all set. Since drums are loud and the sound will travel, most people do not have a window where they practice. Go out and get yourself a cozy floor lamp and/or table lamp and use a low-watt incandescent bulb. This will emit a constant light source (non-flickering) that is more of a yellow tone. It will make you feel more relaxed, able to concentrate and will likely help you feel cozier in your practice space. I’ve also seen a few practice rooms that have Christmas lights strung around the ceiling. The vibe that it creates is extremely cozy and welcoming.
Use a Small Table or Desk
It’s important to be organized, especially in a small space. If you have lots of clutter from books, magazines, headphones and other resources for your practice time, it will distract you. How many times have you gone to practice and ended up spending 30 minutes cleaning up instead? That has certainly happened to me many times.
A perfect solution is to use a small desk or even a bedside table if your space is very small. Once I started keeping a small table near my drums I could keep headphones, tuning keys, tools and cords in a drawer, my books piled neatly on top and I now had a place to put my coffee mug. The result was that I spent much more of my time practicing and less time organizing and cleaning up. You don’t have to break the bank on new furniture. Stop by a salvation army or garage sale and buy a small piece of furniture for only a few dollars. It will add a lot of value to your practice space and time.
Keep Your Motivation on the Wall
Looking at a blank wall can certainly add to the boredom of a practice room. It’s a great idea to put up posters or images of people and things that will inspire and motivate you. After all, you are coming into your space to spend time working on your drumming. These images can include things like:
- Heroes, drummers, bands or movies you like
- Inspiration quotes
- Magazine cut-outs
- Funny comic strips
- Photos of people you love
- Vinyl records
Having something more than a blank wall to look at will increase the coziness of your practice space. This makes you feel more comfortable to be in it for longer periods of time. Not to mention that when you zone out and get deep into your practice, its good to have a visual focal point too, rather than closing your eyes.
Have a Cozy Break-time Chair
Drum thrones are great for when you are playing. When you stop playing to listen to music, read an article or even just to think for a minute or two, you might find its not the most comfortable choice. Having a small chair is perfect to keep you relaxed and give yourself some back support in the short breaks you take between your drumming.
I have a cozy armchair that I love to move to when the playing stops for a few minutes. It helps me to stay comfortable within the room and not feel like I need to leave during break time. If are lucky enough to have a room big enough for a couch that is a huge bonus. Just be careful that napping on the couch doesn’t become a distraction to your practice time. That’s why I prefer a cozy chair. If you have a friend over to your practice space to jam, they’ll thank you for the comfortable seating option.
Want More Free Drumming Resources?
Sign up for a 14-Day FREE Trial and get access to 8 lessons. There are practice play-along videos, a progress tracker, downloadable PDF worksheet and more in each lesson. These are the most interactive lessons you can find online designed to get you practicing and growing as a drummer.
For more useful tips to help you get this most out of your practice time, read this article: 5 Simple Practice Tips For Every Drummer.