Wahlbangers Drum Circle Organization is a 501(c)(3) nonprofit
(based in Los Angeles, CA.) dedicated to
“Banging down walls” of stress, isolation, and stigma
& building bridges to inclusion, acceptance, and contentment
with the therapeutic benefits of group drumming.
"Research conducted in 2002 and 2003 by the institutional review board for human studies at Meadville Medical Center concluded that recreational [drum circles] have more favorable effects than antidepressants and mood-stabilizing drugs." (Drumatic)
My mom "absolutely loves playing the drums with this group. It's one of the things that gets her most excited and really engaged." ~ Beth Boynton
"The drumming brightens our activity room and turns it into a concert hall of joy!"
Linda Engler, Activity Director
"In my 25 years as a physical therapist this is the best activity I've ever seen."
Deborah Crea, MS, PT, Director of Rehabilitation, Los Angeles Jewish Home for the Aging
"Rhythmic cues can help retrain the brain after a stroke or other neurological impairment, as with Parkinson's patients... The more connections that can be made within the brain, the more integrated our experiences become." (Thaut)
EVERYONE CAN PLAY!
IMPROVES QUALITY OF LIFE...
ENCOURAGES SOCIALIZATION & INSTILLS A SENSE OF COMMUNITY
REDUCES STRESS, ANXIETY AND DEPRESSION
RAISES ENERGY LEVEL
IMPROVES CONCENTRATION, FOCUS AND COGNITION
IMPROVES COORDINATION, MOBILITY AND MOTOR SKILLS
BUILDS SELF-ESTEEM AND CONFIDENCE
SPARKS CREATIVITY AND LAUGHTER
ENHANCES SLEEP PATTERNS
POSITIVE INTERACTION FOR FAMILY MEMBERS Intergenerational / Family Drum Circles
Activities Directors ~
Interactive group drumming is a fun way to "...provide for an ongoing program of activities designed to meet... the interests and the physical, mental, and psychosocial well-being of each resident", as defined in F-Tag 248.
Making Music Therapy Helps Responsiveness
Researchers are using music making to begin the testing procedures for dementias, which puts the patients more at ease and garners better results. In a recent study, 32 patients made music by singing and playing percussion… In another test, patients were asked to play a hand drum and imitate rhythms played by a facilitator and to make up their own rhythms. The control group was given standard tests of cognitive ability.
The two types of tests both measured similar thinking ability; but the researchers found that tests administered with music making are more useful because music elicits a response from even the most uncommunicative patients and patients in the latter stages of dementia.
HOW IS MUSIC THERAPY USED IN NURSING HOMES?
"MUSIC IS USED WITH ELDERLY PERSONS TO INCREASE OR MAINTAIN THEIR LEVEL OF PHYSICAL, MENTAL, AND SOCIAL / EMOTIONAL FUNCTIONING.
THE SENSORY AND INTELLECTUAL STIMULATION OF MUSIC CAN HELP MAINTAIN A PERSON'S QUALITY OF LIFE."
(American Music Therapy Association)
"Older Americans are largely unfamiliar with this [drum circle] movement and yet these are the people who could benefit the most.
The formation of drum circles among the elderly should be an integral part of any music therapy program...[especially] among the older population now isolated in nursing homes and retirement communities."
Stanford University School of Medicine conducted a study with 30 depressed people over 80 years of age and found that participants in a weekly music therapy group were less anxious, less distressed, and had higher self-esteem. (Friedman)