Pat Gesualdo - Drum Therapy

Healing with the Drumset: A Powerful Resource for Drum Teachers and Therapists of Students of Disabilities

Drum Therapy is an exciting breakthrough for drum instructors and special needs service providers, helping to teach both mainstream and special needs students the art of drumming. It explores the revolutionary Drum Therapy® system that was developed by author Pat Gesualdo and used throughout the world in schools, hospitals, community centers, rehabilitation facilities, day care treatment centers, and mental health centers. This book is a comprehensive resource that contains material for the student/patient and the teacher/therapist. The course covers numerous rhythms in a variety of musical styles, including rock, blues, jazz, and more. A CD is provided to demonstrate all the examples in the book.

Drum Therapy helps children and adults fight the symptoms of Autism, Dyslexia, ADD/ADHD, Tourette Syndrome, ODD, OCD, Multiple Sclerosis, Down Syndrome, Sensory Integration Issues, Asperger's Disorder and more.


Drum Therapy is a 71-page book divided into three sections and comes with a supplemental CD.

Part 1: Drum Lessons takes up half of the book and covers all the basics that you'd expect from a book for beginners but does get into some intermediate studies. Topics include grip, note and rest values (music notation), reading exercises and rudiments, plus assorted quarter-note, eighth-note, sixteenth-note beats, dotted rhythms, syncopation, and even some double bass drum beats.

Part 2: Drum Therapy gives an overview of the objectives of the book, the targeted population, and discusses how drum therapy assists with the therapeutic and creative components. It briefly explains the various parts of the brain, starting with the right and left hemispheres, then the four lobes and cerebral cortex. The section closes by discussing the general approach to teaching and working with the special needs population, including those with coordination disabilities and hyperactivity disabilities.

Part 3: Teacher's Guide takes the teacher/therapist through the book, page by page, explaining the possible issues and challenges that may arise when using this book's curriculum. The book closes with a glossary of common disabilities and disorders.

The supplemental CD contains audio examples to aid in establishing the intended feel and correct rhythm of each notated exercise.

Having worked with physically disabled and mentally challenged students, I believe Drum Therapy provides a good, basic foundation and approach for teachers/therapists as they deal with potential situations while working with physically and mentally disabled students.