Essential Drumming Equipment Every Beginner Needs

Guide essential drumming equipment for beginners

Certain drumming equipment for beginners is essential if you want to learn the drums properly.

For this reason, I’m sharing 13 must-haves a novice drummer needs.

Some of the equipment like a high-quality drum set is obvious, while other utensils might surprise you.

With that said, let’s take a look at essential drumming equipment every beginner should own.

1. A High-Quality Drum Set (Acoustic Or Electric)

If you want to learn to play the drums, you need a drum set to start-off.

It’s possible to get the instrument later, but it’s definitely more fun to own your own kit early on.

So, in the first place, I recommend buying your own drum set.

(Or at least get permanent access to one.)

It doesn’t have to be an expensive kit for novices, but you shouldn’t go with the cheapest instrument either.

Also, you don’t need to buy new drums to learn drumming properly.

Depending on your area, you might be lucky and find a great second hand kit.

Used acoustic drum sets and e-drums tend to be much cheaper while offering the same quality as new instruments.

However, it can be difficult to find a good used drum set as a beginner.

So, if you’re unsure of what you need to look out for when buying used drums – or simply want to own a new kit – start with a bundle from a renowned music store.

You can buy acoustic and electronic drum sets on

  • Amazon and
  • eBay as well as
  • specialized music stores like Sweetwater or Thomann.

Also, there might be a local music shop in your area.

Make sure to pay it a visit!

2. A Practice Pad

A drumming practice pad allows you to work on your skills wherever you want.

You can practice with it relatively silent, so it’s definitely a versatile piece of drumming equipment not only beginners love.

At the same time, there’s another reason why practice pads are so popular:

Drum practice pads allow you to fully concentrate on your current exercise.

You won’t get distracted by the possibilities of a full drum set.

Instead, you can work on your

  • technique,
  • movements and
  • feeling

without being tempted to play a fancy fill or groove on the drums.

This might sound strange, but the non-distracting character of a drumming practice pad actually is one of its biggest benefits.

Also, various drummers start their musical journey only with a pad.

You know, sometimes you need to save up money before buying your first drum kit.

It’s also possible that you need to find a rehearsal room first.

In the meantime, you can still practice basic drumming exercises like

  • different stickings,
  • Rudiments or
  • rhythms

on a drum practice pad like The Drumeo P4 Practice Pad.

For me, this makes it another must-have, not only for drum beginners.

3. Drumsticks (That Fit Your Needs)

When speaking of essential drumming equipment for beginners, I have to mention drumsticks.

Just like a drum set, they are crucial for making music.

For beginners, I do recommend lighter sticks like the classic Vic Firth 5A or a 7A model.

These sizes offer a good balance between

  • weight,
  • length and
  • control.

You can also buy Hot Rods if you like a different sound and feeling while drumming.

Also, Rods are often used by drummers wanting to reduce their volume while playing.

I wouldn’t want to drum with Rods only, but they are definitely a precious asset worth spending some money on.

So basically, drum beginners need to have good quality drumsticks fitting their needs.

I recommend popular models like the Vic Firth American Classic 5A and 7A.

4. A Comfortable Drum Seat

Some years ago, I had to play a full concert on a beer crate.

You might not believe it, but I forgot my drum throne at home.

No chance to drive the around 360+ kilometers back to grab it.

With this said, I definitely have to mention a comfortable drum seat as essential drumming equipment for beginners.

However, it’s not only the beer-crate-concert convincing me of its importance.

Let’s keep in mind:

Drumming is a highly mental and physical activity.

You’re using all of your limbs.

If you can’t sit properly while drumming, you will notice it soon.

That’s something you definitely want to avoid.

After all, a bad drumming position can cause

  • muscle pain,
  • back problems or
  • similiar health issues.

At the same time, you simply can’t play fully relaxed with a bad drum throne.

This piece of drumming equipment for this reason is HIGHLY important.

Don’t compromise on your drum throne.

Buying a high-quality drum seat will be an investment you certainly won’t regret.

Drumming equipment recommendations for beginners

5. At Least Two Or Three Drum Keys

Sometimes, the little things make the biggest difference.

Same with drumming, or more precisely:

Drum keys.

They are crucial for

  • putting on as well as
  • tuning the drum heads and
  • adjusting your hardware.

Without drum keys, you simply can’t fix the drum heads and hardware.

That’s why I recommend buying at least two or three of them.

If you happen to need a drum key, you’ll be glad you’ve bought more than one.

6. Gaffa Tape, Moongels Or Dampening Rings

When speaking of drumming equipment for beginners, most people think of

  • a solid kick pedal,
  • the comfortable drum throne
  • or balanced drumsticks.

However, that’s definitely not the whole story.

People often forget tend to overlook the importance of smaller equipment like drum keys and

  • Gaffa tape,
  • Moongels or
  • dampening rings.

These accessories basically help you to design an amazing drum sound.

So, it’s most of the time not enough to just tune a drum head.

You also need to use dampening rings, Moongels or tape for creating the sound you like.

7. A Drumming Metronome (Or: Klick)

Another must-have for drummers is a metronome or klick.

This small device or app helps you to establish a great timing.

It’s outstandingly important to be able to play the drums with and to the metronome.

For this reason, a metronome is another essential piece of drumming equipment for beginners.

If you don’t want to buy one, you can also practice with a metronome app.

8. A Non-Slippery Drum Rug Or Mat

When you play the drums, there is a lot of physical activity going on.

That’s why you need to get a non-slippery drum rag or mat:

Playing the kick pedal will push the instrument forward if you don’t place a rug under the bass drum.

This currently happened to me at a jam session I attended.

Also, it happened at a concert some years ago.

Really annoying – and honestly, something you can easily avoid also with a simple big rug.

Speaking of:

The rug has to be big enough to place the whole drum set and you on it.

If it is too small, on the other hand, you might still push the kit forward.

Also keep the floor of your house or flat in mind.

Placing the spikes of the bass drum right on the floor, and than pushing it, can damage the surface.

That’s also something you probably want to avoid.

9. Drum Books, Notes, Other Instructional Materials As Well As A Music Stand & Folder

Essential drumming equipment for beginners also includes instructional materials like

  • drum books,
  • notes and
  • courses.

After all, they give you ideas on what you do behind the drum kit.

So, good materials will also provide you with a proven strategy on how to learn to play the drums.

That’s even more important than learning a new drum beat or fill.

Also, don’t forget to buy a music folder and a stand.

Both are must-haves for every drummers who’s learning with drum notes.

Drummers equpiment beginner buying guide

10. A Solid Bass Drum Pedal

My favorite instrument of the drum set has to be the kick.

I just love the deep sound of it – and that it is to be played with a bass drum pedal.

Currently, I use the Iron Cobra Power Glide Double Bass pedal.

I bought it in 2007, and it’s still doing the trick each time I play the drums.

For this reason, I also recommend investing in a high-quality bass drum pedal.

It’s simply worth the money, considering its reliability over a long period of time.

You will instantly notice the difference when playing with a low- and high-quality pedal.

The same goes for most drumming equipment on this list.

11. Ear Protection And Earphones

You’ve only got one body to live in.

So please, use ear protection like these ear muffs when playing an acoustic drumset!

That’s probably a piece of drumming equipment many beginners tend to overlook.

But it’s outstandingly important.

You can also buy high quality ear phones with sound cancelling function.

By doing so, you are able to play to your favorite songs or the metronome as well.

12. Drum Lessons (Online & Offline)

Drum lessons might be the only must-have on this list you can argue about.

Do you have to take them?


Would I recommend them anyway?


Thing is:

Professional drum lessons help you to learn much

  • faster,
  • easier and
  • with more fun.

You don’t need lessons, but they highly simplify your life as a drummer.

That’s why a good drum teacher is gold worth.

Personally, I spent thousands of Euros (+thousands of hours) on drum lessons in the past.

Each Cent was well spent.

13. A Journal

The last must-have for drummers is a journal.

Just a journal.

Or note book.

You can use it to write down your drumming progress.

Also, you use it to define your personal

  • short,
  • middle and
  • long-term drumming goals.

A journal not only gives you an overview of your achievements and goals, but also is a great motivation for you.

I highly recommend starting your drumming journal today.

It’s the easiest way to keep track of your progress while staying motivated.

Final Thoughts On Drumming Equipment For Beginners

In this guide, I’ve shared 13 must-haves of essential drumming equipment for beginners with you.

Each of them will help you to learn to play the drums with more

  • ease,
  • fun and
  • excitement.

At the same time, there is of course more drumming equipment you can buy out there.

I’m thinking of a stick bag right now.

A cowbell.

Or effect cymbals like a splash.

However, I really wanted to cover the most important basics in this guide.

For me, they consist of

  1. a high-quality acoustic or electronic drum set
  2. a practice pad
  3. drumsticks matching your needs
  4. a comfortable drum throne or seat
  5. several drum keys
  6. Gaffa tape, Moongels or dampening rings
  7. a metronome (or: klick)
  8. a non-slippery drum rug or mat
  9. drum books, sheet music, other instructional materials & a music stand and folder
  10. a solid bass drum pedal
  11. ear protection and earphones
  12. professional drum lessons and
  13. a journal.

This is the drumming equipment every drum novice needs in my opinion.

If you’re thinking of something else, let me know down in the comments below.

Thanks for reading and now, have a superb time learning to play the drums. 🙂


drum blog Manu Holmer
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Author: Manu Holmer

Hi, I'm Manu Holmer, nice to meet you! As a professional drummer and drum teacher, my vision is to help others transform their lives with the power of music. Let's not only play the drums. Feel the rhythm & and walk to our own beats!

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