Private VS Online Drum Lessons – What is better for learning drums?

In this article, I will talk about private drum lessons vs online drum lessons, the pros and cons of each, and which method is best for you.

Also, I will respond to some common questions regarding drum learning, so stay with me.

Here we go! 

What is the best way to learn the drums?

Let’s address the elephant in the room right away!

The best way to learn drums is through 1 on 1 private lessons.

The best alternative is group lessons and, after that, drum platforms such as Drumeo Edge, Mike’s Lessons, and Drum Channel.

Most drummers take lessons because the feedback you get from a drum teacher is crucial for your development process.

Why are private drum lessons the best method for learning drums?

  1. Instant feedback
  2. Focused only on you
  3. Force you to work

So why does not everybody learn drums in private?

Because often, 1 private lesson costs the same amount as a full month on a drum platform.

Yes, the cost of 1 on 1 lessons is their only downside.

Private VS Online Drum Lessons – Comparation

Here is a detailed review of all the important things that differentiate between these two drum learning methods:

Element
Online
In person
1. Price
2. Approach
3. Time
4. Convenience
5. Relationships
6. Amount of material
7. Effectivness

1. Price

The price of both can vary. Drum platforms like Drumeo Edge, Mike’s lessons, or Drum Channel charge around $25 to $30 monthly. 

A private drum lesson can cost you the same amount for only one lesson plus the cost of getting yourself there.

2. Approach

So the approach is way different. Private lessons are the clear winner in terms of a few things:

Feedback – essential for gettings things right and fixing some issues technique-wise. There is no way you get “this is what is wrong” on online lessons. Of course, I mean on platforms, not 1 on 1 private lessons held online.

Focus is focused on you and all the things you are doing wrong. The right drum teacher will spot your weak spots and provide exercises to fix them. Sometimes you’ll learn a lot just by talking to your drum coach.

3. Time

Instantly looks like it takes more time for private lessons. You need to drive there, learn, then go back and practice. But, it is a way faster way of learning because they are done in person. You can see clearly how it’s done, to ask a question and instantly get all the answers. 

Usually, when you start, you will go by the drum teacher’s established system for all students, but later, you can focus only on things you wish. 

With online lessons, you will hardly get questions responded to, and if the thing you want is a focus is missing, better luck next time.

4. Convenience

Oh, it can get better than watching online drum lessons, eating pizza, and drinking coke simultaneously.

Right?

Is it the right way? Is it the best way?

I think not. Online drum lessons tend to boost our laziness. We invest in learning through an online drum platform to feel we have accomplished something and made progress.

If you can use the convenience of not leaving your home and make the practice effective, cool.

If not, go to drum lessons in person.

5. Relationships

Building a strong relationship with your drum teacher can earn you a recommendation for some gig in your country, and I firmly believe that personal connections are the strongest.

You can also make friends through their forums and private groups on drum platforms. Who knows what kind of opportunity can jump out.

6. Amount of material

Now, the amount of material drum platforms have is way larger than a “database” of your private teacher. Platforms have hundreds of drum coaches, so the amount of knowledge must be larger.

This doesn’t mean you will not be able to cover everything with your drum teacher. It gives you access to more information but is presented differently. 

7. Effectiveness

Slowly, we got to the most important question, what is more effective, an online drum lesson or a drum lesson in person?

Short answer – private drum lesson  

Long answer – if you can use the amount of material drum platform like Drumeo has while really investing the time in practice and all that while saving the money, good. You can extract more knowledge, but still, there is one thing. 

Answers to your questions. What happens if you get answers right when you need them, you save time, and in that field, drum lessons in person are undefeatable. 

learn drums on your own

Is it hard to learn drums on your own?

If you decide to go that path, here is what to expect.

You will immediately go to YouTube because that is the ultimate free source for learning drums. 

But where to start?

Good question; this is the first obstacle, videos on YT are not sorted in any manner. You can’t find the perfect video for your first and second step. You can’t find exact videos that fit your skill level or videos that would give you answers to all the questions you will run into.

Eventually, you will be able to learn, but, and a big BUT, you might learn it the wrong way cause the drummer you watched forgot to mention you should hold your pinky finger on the stick.

I am just exaggerating, but you get the point.

There is no feedback and no sorted videos, so you can go step by step, so there is a big chance you will miss some steps. 

That is something that happened to me. I knew “Mike Portnoy’s” fills before knowing to hold sticks properly.

Returning to the “1st grade” is more painful than learning properly from the start.

To summarize, YES, you can learn drums on your own but with some big losses in time.

What is the best age to learn the drums?

The best age to learn drums is between 10 and 15. 

Why? 

Well, you can start earlier, as many talented drummers do, but according to brainbalancenters average attention span of a 10-year-old child is 20-30 minutes. That is good enough to start learning and have the right amount of concentration.

Anything below is just too little time. 

I had the opportunity to teach a 7-year-old with an attention span of 10-15 minutes; he can’t learn much. He wants to play, not learn at that age.

Can you learn drums in 2 months?

Yes, after two months, you’ll be able to play a few basic rhythms and more than 10 rudiments. Not fast and not sounding good, but you will be able.

This is not a level where you join the band or pursue your career as a studio drummer but enough to get you started.

In 6 months, you can expect more progress but really, after 2 years is when things are starting to make sense.

Is 30 too late to learn drums?

No, it’s never too late. With the right focus, you can be one of the best drummers on the planet in less than 10 years.

You’ll be one of the best in your forties; what’s wrong with that. Although you are late as hell, don’t be discouraged, it’s never too late.

private 1 on 1 drum lesson

Are online drum lessons worth it?

Online drum lessons on a platform such as Drumeo Edge cost around $29 a month. That equals the price of one private drum lesson. 

For that amount, you are getting 500+ hours of video material by drum legends.  

So, anything in person is better than anything online, that is for sure. However, could you take a 1 on 1 drum lesson with Dennis Chambers in person?

Probably not, out for various reasons.

On the other hand, it is a much better solution than online platforms with free sources, such as YouTube, especially for beginners. Everything is sorted step-by-step, with plenty of courses covering all the essential steps for beginners.

Here’s an example. I recently went on drumchannel.com and watched only one video of Thomas Lang in his course. This video is about developing endurance and wrist on drums, so the basics of hand technique, just what I was needed.

I couldn’t find any lesson on how to build muscles and endurance on drums on YT, so I decided to look further. 

Let’s say you are a beginner, you pay $30 to watch this single lesson, and you use it to build a stable foundation that will make your life easier and your drumming way better.

Is it worth it?

Let’s summarize.

Pros of drum lessons in persons are:

  • Approach
  • Effectiveness
  • Time

Almost all drummers went down this path at some point. A good drum teacher will shape your drumming, develop your sound, and troubleshoot your flaws.

Downsides:

  • Price
  • Convenience

Having a pro drummer spend time improving your drumming skills quickly gets pricey. Of course, there is the side of leaving your home and going to your teacher.

Pros of online drum lessons:

  • Price
  • Convenience
  • Amount of material

It is cheaper to learn drums online through drum courses and platforms than to go on 1 on 1 lessons. You can do all that while not leaving your home, but please make it a good investment by dedicating time to practice.

The amount of material on some of these platforms is truly big. They can cover everything from technique, musicality, and independence to creativity, developing your sound and recording.

Downsides:

  • Focus
  • Feedback

Focus is not dedicated to only you, which implies you can get answers to some questions you might have along the way.

Same for the feedback. You may get in touch with admins or people in the community, but the feedback may come (if it comes at all) in the form of comments. In live lessons, the teacher will take your hand and show you the adjustments you need to make right on the spot.

Now it’s your turn.

Let me know what you think in the comments.

Denis Loncaric

Denis Loncaric

My name is Denis. I am a drummer, percussionist, music enthusiast, and blogger. Drums have been my passion for 15 years now. My idea is to write about the things I like and I am interested in. I want to share my drum passion with fellow musicians who walk, talk, and breathe drums.

We will be happy to hear your thoughts

Leave a reply

Drum That
Logo