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DrumChops.com is committed to providing properly sized and quality sets for children and young adults. We do this because we feel that encouraging children to play the drums could spark a life long passion and commitment to the arts. We have personal experience with this as the owner started at the age of five. If a child has the interest to play an instrument, it is our feeling that he or she should be encouraged if at all possible, and while it may not be the most glamorous or profitable business we do, we take it very seriously!
Our goal in this brief page is to pass along some tips to parents looking for that first or second set for their child so that they may get a set that is properly sized for them. This will help give the child a sense of respect for the drums and encouragement because they will be able to reach all of the equipment without a problem.
When sizing a set for a child it does not so much rely on the childes age, as it does their size. Therefore, it is very important to take a few general measurements with the student sitting in the proper position to play the instrument.
This first step will require either getting a drum throne, or a chair that is the right height for the child to sit in while the rest of the measurements are taken. Here are some examples of a three year old in a small chair.
In these two pictures, we can see the basic examples of how to begin to size the child for the proper drum set. This little girl stands 39" tall. The chair is 11 1/2 inches high, and that is perfect playing height. We can tell by the slight downward slope in her lap as she sits straight up.
In the picture on the right, the measurement from the floor to her arms as she holds them straight out is 26". This will now become the basis for sizing the drum set.
As it would be uncomfortable to have drums that were so high that her arms would have to reach up to hit them, we know the maximum height from the floor to the top of the tom tom attached to the bass drum can be 26 inches.
We can now look at the sizes of the different sets and see which one would be a good fit for this child. My choice would be the Jr. 5-pc outfit. The bass drum is 16 inches in diameter, and the largest tom tom that goes on the bass drum is 6 inches deep. If we add those two numbers together, and then add a few inches to space the tom tom from the top of the bass drum, we have about 25 inches from the floor to the top of the tom tom. As the child's arms were 26 inches from the ground that makes this set perfectly sized for her.
In addition to the set being perfectly sized for her now, it also means that as she grows, the tom tom holders can raise the toms off of the bass drum to allow the set to grow with the child.
Having these measurements match up, and a good seat that is sized for the child and then can expand to be higher as they grow are the two most important things in sizing up the right set for your child!
NOTE: If the child is smaller, look for a smaller set and a suitably sized chair or drum seat, and if the child is larger look to the bigger drums either in the Drums for Kids or even the DrumSet Buyers Guide for full sized sets. At times your best bargains are in full sized sets, so if the student is tall enough, that might be a better way to go. Lastly, all of the sets will have options for seats and other equipment that would be properly sized for the set you choose. If you have any questions, please send us a note. We are more then happy to assist you in finding the right set for your future drummer!