Sixteenth-Note Triplet Fills and Exercises


These exercises serve as a great workout for improving coordination, dexterity, and timing around the kit. They also make unique-sounding, punchy drum fills to use within your own playing.

Each of the triplet patterns below use alternating sticking and begin with the right stick (left stick if you’re using a left-handed setup). Going down the toms, tonally, allows the right stick to lead the transitions. However, when you’re going back up the toms, the sticks can get crossed. Be sure to move the left stick out of the way in order to avoid a trip-up.

As with anything, take these slowly at first, focusing on technique and solid timing. Gradually increase your speed as you become comfortable with the exercises/fills.


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Publisher of, Alfred Publishing author and veteran Drum! Magazine Groove Analysis video instructor, Nate holds a Bachelor of Arts in Education from John Carroll University in Cleveland, OH and is currently undertaking a Master of Arts in Education at the University of Findlay in Ohio.