Jammin' 4 Fitness
Energy expenditure for playing the drums or guitar in an active jam session is estimated to be 3 to 6 times greater than energy expenditure at rest. This equates to burning an extra 3.5 to 7.0 calories per minute when jamming. A surprise? Not to Dr. Marcus Smith of the University of Chichester and Dr. Steve Draper of the University of Gloucestershire who are the lead researchers responsible for the "Clem Burke Drumming Project."
The purpose of the "Clem Burke Drumming Project" was to determine the energy cost of Clem Burke, the drummer for the rock group Blondie, during concert performances. Clem Burke's heart rate, oxygen consumption, and blood lactate levels were measured during rehearsal tests. His heart rate and blood lactate levels were also monitored while he performed in concerts.
The results of the study showed that Burke's average heart rate during performances was 145 beats per minute, with peaks up to approximately 190 beats per minute--a level that exceeded his age predicted maximum heart rate of 168 beats per minute. Based on his heart rate response, his estimated total energy expenditure was 564 calories, with an average caloric expenditure of 412 calories. The researchers concluded that rock drumming entails a high rate of energy expenditure and "stamina to sustain optimum output, especially [for high-profile musicians] on tour."
Note: Before beginning an exercise program or increasing the intensity level of a current routine, a physician's approval should be obtained, especially for older adults and those at risk for or who currently have chronic health conditions.
Clem Burke Drumming Project
CDC: General Physical Activities Defined by Level of Intensity