The 3 Best Drumsticks for Beginners (Easy Choice)

Choosing a pair of drumsticks doesn’t need to be complicated! My goal here is to help you choose the best drumsticks for beginners.  I’ve boiled it down to 3 easy choices: one for Rock or Metal, one for Jazz, and one for all around drumming.


Vic Firth American Classic 5A Drum Sticks

Drumstick for all Around Drumming:


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The 5A is the worlds top selling drum stick for a reason. It’s not too thick, and not too thin and one of the best drums sticks for beginners who are interested in exploring a variety of different drum styles. Including Rock, pop, jazz or even World Music. They also work well for Rudimental or Classical Drumming.

  • Wood tips offer a natural sound on the cymbals.
  • Medium taper provides some rebound.
  • Well balanced and pitch paired.
  • Durable.
  • Made from hickory wood (dense yet flexible).

Vic Firth American Classic 5B

for Rock or Metal

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The 5B is one of the best drumsticks for beginners who are heavy hitters.  If you are interested in playing mainly Rock or Metal, then this is the stick for you. It is a bit wider and heavier than the 5A, meaning it will produce a louder and heavier sound. The 5B is ideal for playing in a loud rock band type of situation.

Vic Firth American Classic 7A

For Jazz

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The 7A is a great stick to choose if you are mainly interested in playing jazz or softer music (like Bossa Bova, Reggae or World Music).  The 7A is thinner than the other sticks, therefore the sound will be lighter and will provide a great rebound (allowing you to play fast and lightly).

Why choose Vic Firth Sticks?

There are many great drumstick companies, but I recommend Vic Firth as the best drumsticks for beginners for a few reasons. Vic Firth is the market leader, and in my experience, their sticks are always :

  • Well balanced (each stick in a pair weighs the same).
  • Pitch paired (the note produced by each stick is identical).
  • Have a conveniently placed flag at the balance point. (To place your fingers for optimal drum technique).

The balance point to help someone choose the best drumstick for beginners

Vic Firth is a bit more expensive than a generic brand, but only by a few dollars.  *You might as well get used to playing with quality drum sticks right off the bat.

The different parts of a drumstick:

the different parts of a drumstick

Tips can be made out of:

  • Wood – the most common material. Wood offers an organic sound, but will eventually chip (which will effect the sound)
  • Nylon – a plastic tip, which has a brighter sound that is more consistent than wood. It is more durable, though perhaps less pleasant sounding than wood.

What tip should I choose if I play an electronic drum set?

On an electronic drum set, the stick tip does not affect the sound, and since the E-cymbals and E-rims are made of rubber,  wood sticks will not splinter, chip or break.  Choices are then based on what will wear the drum head the least, and what feels good to play.

For e-drums with rubber pads: wood sticks work well.

For e-drums with mesh heads: a nylon tip will stay smooth and will not micro-tear the mesh, and so they are perhaps preferable.  That being said, a wood tip will work well too, as long as you do not go back and forth between acoustic and electronic drum kits with with the same pair of sticks.   On the acoustic kit, the wood stick will chip on the metal cymbals and rims, and then those rough parts will slowly tear the mesh head.  Keep a pair of sticks reserved for sole use with your mesh head e-drum.

Learn more about electronic drum sets for beginners.

Vic Firth American Classic 5AN — nylon tip

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Is taper important on a Drumstick?

Basically, a longer taper offers more rebound when you play, while a smaller taper offers less.  If you are looking for a stick that offers a lot of rebound in order to play jazz or to study drum technique, I would recommend a stick with a longer taper such as:

Vic Firth American Jazz 5

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What do the numbers and letters mean on a drumstick?

The higher the number the thinner the stick. The lower the number the thicker the stick.  For example, the 7A is thinner than the 5A.

The letters used to mean:

  • A: Orchestra
  • B: Band
  • D: Dance band

This doesn’t really apply anymore.

About Musiprof

Thank you for reading our blog article about Best Drumsticks for Beginners.

Musiprof is a Canadian Music organization that connects drum teachers to students in MontrealToronto and Vancouver.

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