Rimshot - how to use and develop this technique?

Rimshot is a simultaneous stroking to the drumhead and drum’s rim with a stick. Rimshot strengthens the sound of the snare drum, gives it strength of sound and loudness. But mastering the rimshot technique takes time and practice.

Used mainly in the playing on the whole drum set - in groove playing, when we need to extract a solid 2 and 4 from the snare drum in groove. However, it is worth mastering this technique at the level of the snare drum itself, during the snare drum exercises.

It is important that the rimshot beats should be repetitive, i.e. that the hand hitting the snare drum (mainly the left one) sounds the same every time. In addition, the other hand (right) should also sound similar to the right when you are playing rimshot with both hands.

And now some tips on how to practice rimshot:

1. The hand must be loose when hitting - it's not easy because you hit the springy drumhead and the springy rim at the same time. You need to feel the "softness" of the impact.

2.Do not stop the drumstick on the drumhead after hitting so as not to damp the instrument excessively. After hitting, the hand should not remain on the drumhead surface, but should jump back a short distance (hand movement as during the tap stroke technique). Thanks to the fact that you will not damp the drumhead with a drumstick, the snare drum will sound more lush with a generous more open sound.

Rimshot length - different snare sounds. This is a very important sound parameter. The rimshot length is the place on the stick where it meets the snare rim. Most often we hit the middle of the snare drum with a truncheon, then the truncheon hits the rim slightly behind its center. You can "lengthen" the rimshot sound, that is, move the stick further behind the center of the snare - move it further away from you - then the snare will sound even more loudly (the stick hits off the center and the other end in the rim - the lever arm extends, so the snare sounds more powerful.

But the rimshot can be "shortened" too - when you hit the drumhead with the drumstick closer to you, in front of the snare drum - then the lever arm shortens and the stick hits the rim closer to your head, thanks to which the rimshot sound is higher.

It is worth to practice different "length" rimshot and learn to play closer and further inside, but also in the middle, because in practice you will most often hit exactly the middle of the snare drum - then the sound is optimal.


1. Begin with single hits with both hands - so as to feel the freedom of sound from each hand and develop a good "relevance" of the sound.

2. Practice using rimshot any rudiments, various exercises from this course, also using dynamics. Thanks to this, you will develop appropriate freedom to use the rimshot technique.


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