You are here:

Drums & Percussion/left handed drumming configuration


I have played the drums open handed style on a right handed setup for several years and am considering an alternative setup. In your opinion would it work to have a left handed setup but use a  double base pedal and a remote high hat in order to not have to re-learn my footwork while crossing my hands.In other words I would still use a right kick and left hi hat pedal with the drums set up in a left handed configuration.

You can use any variation within your set-up that you wish; the degree with which you might have to adjust to or learn a mirrored technique or altered placement of instruments will depend on how much of a change you make in your set-up. If you are already using an ambidextrous and independent approach on the drums, either through exercises or within the music itself, then you should be able to easily reverse your hands and/or feet on any of their respective instruments.

In addition to mirroring, your level of proficiency will determine how well you assimilate to instruments or pedals being positioned in different locations within the set-up. Keep in mind that, no matter how you set up the instruments, they should be placed such that you can access them with ease, without having to under- or over-extend any limbs and without sacrificing your technique.

Find the Goldilocks zone. Not too high. Not too low. Not too far. Not too near. Just right. Apply that to every instrument and pedal. The same applies to their angles. The key to an optimal set-up is ease of access. If the placement doesn't feel natural, then move it until it does.

If you would like to increase your ambidexterity, independence, and general coordination, which will help with getting used to a new set-up, check out Dahlgren and Fine's "4-Way Coordination" method book.

Best of luck!

Drums & Percussion

All Answers

Answers by Expert:

Ask Experts


The Doctor


I answer a variety of drums & percussion related questions. I have multiple music degrees and years of experience in the field.

When asking your question:
1. Please be clear in your message.
2. Provide actual question(s).
3. Please keep it short and concise.
4. Save my one-question-per-day for someone else if you can find the answer on your own.

Please, *no* questions regarding: serial numbers, appraisals, pricing, value, restorations, or when a particular instrument was made. Thank you.


15 years professional experience.


©2016 All rights reserved.