Over To You: Is DJing Harming Your Health?

Phil Morse | Read time: 2 mins
DJ health DJ lifestyle drink drugs
Last updated 30 August, 2017


Are your DJing gigs becoming a bit of a blur? Too much partying preying on your mind? Maybe you’re pushing it too far…

Digital DJ Tips member Jimmy G writes: “I was having a chat with a DJ friend the other day about ‘DJ lifestyle’ and how much strain DJs around me are having recently. With students returning for the new term in a matter of days, nightlife around town is picking up dramatically and gigs are rolling in (which is never a bad thing).

“But what we discussed is that along with doing many gigs in a week, we also have part-time day jobs, and (in the case of my friends and me) attend university. For many of us this leaves little room to keep a healthy mind and body. We eat bad, sleep bad, and party a lot (lol) which I guess is part of it?

“To sum up, I am currently doing nothing that is beneficial for my health. So just thought I would throw it out there and see how everybody handles the ‘luxurious’ lifestyle of the DJ…”

Digital DJ Tips says:

Some American rocker once said something along the lines of: “My body is like my house. I keep it clean most of the time, but every now and then I throw the doors open, have a huge party and everything gets trashed!”

Personally I think that’s kind of OK, at least while you’re young. Do it too often and it stops being fun and your health suffers, never let your hair down and – depending on the person you were before you started DJing, of course – you’re gonna lose touch with what excited you and attracted you to what you euphemistically call ‘the luxurious lifestyle’ in the first place.

Of course, as we get older, this kind of thing becomes harder to deal with (“I used to get no hangovers, then they lasted days, and now I even get them while I’m still drinking!” a friend moaned to me the other day). Plus, if you want to make a long-term career out of DJing, you really do have to decide if you’re going – as my friend Dave Haslam puts it – “down the clean route, or the drink/drugs route”… pick the latter and chances are you’ll at best underperform, at worst… well, DJ AM is an example of how things can go badly, sadly wrong.

While arguably your body can recover from much of what you throw at it, at least until middle age, one thing you’ll never get back if you blow it is your hearing. So whatever else you do, my advice would be to look after that. Oh, and go for a run around the park every now and then. It’s a good time to do some music discovery in your earbuds, after all…

What do you do to keep healthy as a DJ? Got any scare stories? Or doesn’t any of this matter in the big scheme of things? Is sleep for pussies? Please share your thoughts in the comments.

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