It is often said that the first sound we hear in the womb is our mother’s heartbeat. Actually, the first sound to vibrate our newly developed hearing apparatus is the pulse of our mother’s blood through her veins and arteries. We vibrate to that primordial rhythm even before we have ears to hear. Some say a drum is also symbolic of the heart of Mother Earth. So is it really any wonder that this sound has been proven to have healing benefits?
Drumming can actually make you smarter because when you drum you access your entire brain. The physical transmission of rhythmic energy to the brain actually synchronizes the left and right hemispheres. When your logical left hemisphere and the intuitive right hemisphere of your brain begin to pulsate together, your inner guidance system, or intuition, becomes stronger.
The sound of drumming generates new neuronal connections in all parts of the brain. The more connections that can be made within the brain, the more integrated our experiences become. This leads to a deeper self-awareness. Drumming also synchronizes the lower areas of the brain (non-verbal) with the frontal cortex (language and reasoning). This integration produces feelings of insight and certainty. For these reasons therapeutic drumming is a powerful tool in helping retrain the brains of people who have some level of damage or impairment, such as with Attention Deficit Disorder (ADD), after a stroke, or where there is neurological disease such as Parkinson’s.
Drumming can induce a natural high by increasing Alpha brain waves. When the brain changes from Beta waves (concentration) to Alpha waves, you feel calm and relaxed. As such, Alpha waves can also produce feelings of well-being and even euphoria, which may help people who suffer from mental illness, such as depression and anxiety. The same Alpha activity is associated with meditation and other integrative modes of consciousness. Drumming can have positive effects on your health and may help with many conditions from stress, fatigue, anxiety, hypertension, asthma, chronic pain, arthritis, mental illness, addiction and even cancer.