Never in a million years did I think I could marry the topic of this blog, health and safety, to another of my passions, drum and bugle corps. But the opportunity has arrived!
The daytime show “The Doctors” put out this special report (link is below – please click on it!) on how some parents are taking their kids out of high-impact sports like football and soccer and encouraging participation in lower risk ‘team’ sports – like drum and bugle corps! To the best of my knowledge, no kid has ever suffered a concussion while participating in this activity, even though it also takes place on a big sports field and involves rigorous training.
What the heck is drum and bugle corps? Think high school or college marching band on steroids. There is more precision, more difficult music, more demanding marching drill, more stunning color guard choreography with rifle and flag tossing, etc. It is an all-encompassing, highly entertaining, feast-for-the-senses spectacle. If you ever have a drum corps show come through your town, go see it!
My son marched drum and bugle corps for five years and I was a volunteer mom. I worked the cook trailer where we sweat and toil to feed 200 sweaty, hungry people four meals per day. I helped out at shows and fundraising events and even joined the corps on tour last summer. Drum and bugle corps is not affiliated with any schools, is non-profit, run by a board of directors and takes place during the summer months when kids are out of school.
This activity provides youth ages 14 – 22 a variety of experiences including the chance to tour the country from coast to coast, performance venues in nearly every state, exposure to a first class music education, the responsibility of taking care of oneself (yes, the kids to their own laundry), the development of a strong work ethic.
Participation in drum and bugle corps really does offer all the same kinds of values that team sports provide, but also adds music education and the lack of head injury risk that has become such a hot topic – and rightfully so!
Maybe this is a victory for the band nerds at last!
Link to video:
For more information about drum and bugle corps (often shortened to ‘drum corps’): Drum Corps International