Publication Date

Summer 2016

Advisor(s) - Committee Chair

Gina Sobrero (Director), Jason Crandall, Scott Arnett, and Mark Schafer

Degree Program

School of Kinesiology, Recreation & Sport

Degree Type

Master of Science


The purpose of this investigation is to examine the energy demand of heavy metal drummers during rehearsal in order to understand the physiological responses. This information may lead to a better understanding of energy expenditure and add to the compendium of physical activity.

The investigation consisted of eight apparently healthy 20 to 37-year-old males were recruited for this investigation. Information gathered during the drum test was average VO2, VO2peak, HR in beats per minute (bpm), metabolic equivalents (METs), and energy expenditure (EE) expressed in calories (kcals) per minute and per hour. Rating of perceived exertion (RPE) was used in addition to VO2 and HR values to assess physical demand. The Bruce Protocol maximal treadmill test was administered to compare the participants VO2max to their VO2peak while drumming.

The EE during the 40-minute drum test was 387.05 + 83 kcals with an estimated hourly EE of 567.33 + 111.7 kcals. VO2, VO2peak, VE, and HR was 21.4 + 4.1 ml/kg/min, 33.9 + 8.1 ml/kg/min, 63.5 + 19 L/min, and 150.4 + 13.6 bpm respectively. The average MET level reached was six. RPE was 13.8 + 1.2 and is expressed as “somewhat hard” in difficulty according to the ACSM. Those categorized as having an average level of fitness reached 50-59% of their VO2max while the two individuals categorized as having an excellent level of fitness reached 42-45% of their VO2max.

In conclusion, heavy metal drumming is a form of physical activity that is of moderate intensity and can be compared to other forms of recreational and work related physical activity.


Exercise Science | Kinesiology