We held a Drum Circle during our Tuesday night practice and support group on April 26. George Shultze of Spirit Sky Drum in Freeport Long Island led the group that focused on learning to play and coordinate rhythms on the Djembe drum. George had everyone introduce themselves while hitting the drum simultaneously- Everyone laughed since when performing this “secondary movement” everyone’s name came out loud and smooth!
After learning the basics of the proper way to play the Djembe, the group learned two different, rather simple rhythms. However, it wasn’t quite so simple when we tried to put them together! The group became a little confused and a bit frustrated. But then we loosened up, so much so that we each took a turn dancing within the circle! It was truly a blast.
So what lesson might a drum circle teach those who stutter?
The drive to be “perfect” causes a bit of frustration. When we just let go of the need to do it “right,” our natural rhythm emerges and we have fun!
When you “lose” the rhythm pattern, you can get it back by copying your neighbor. Our friends are there to help us get back on track.
Life begins outside of our comfort zone. Dance to the beat of your own drum!
Written by: Heather Grossman
Carl Herder, M.A., CCC-SLP, BCS-F
Atlanta Clinic Director, Board-Certified Specialist in Fluency Disorders
Carl is our Clinic Director for the Arthur M. Blank Center for Stuttering Therapy in Atlanta, GA. He joined AIS in New York in 2006 and worked closely with our founder, Catherine Montgomery for nearly five years. In 2016, he moved to Atlanta to open our first satellite office.