You don’t necessarily need a traditional drum practice pad, there’s plenty of alternatives if you need to just find something to get by. Many things you might already have around your home can work just fine as a practice pad.

Mouse Pads

Mouse pads work great, and most people have one or more of these around. You can just lay them on any table top or hard surface and there you go. Instant drum practice pad. They don’t feel all that bad either. It’s very close to a traditional drum practice pad. The only drawback here might be durability depending on how much you use it as a practice pad. Many mouse pads have cloth surfaces that could wear out if your hitting them with sticks all the time.

Cork Board

This is another thing that you might already have around if you have any old bulletin boards or coasters or something like that. Cork board can feel pretty decent as a drumming surface, but it also might not be the most durable option.

Basketballs or Other Inflatable Balls

The round surface and springy rebound is interesting, but this surprisingly can work. Depending on the material the ball is made of, you might get different results. This can be worth trying in a pinch.

Rubber Mats or Yoga Mats

This would be more of a make-your-own practice pad type of approach. If you have any old or unused rubber or yoga mats around, and depending on the material they are made from, this could work. You could cut a circular section or any shape out of a mat like this to get whatever size or shape you prefer. The mat could be glued or stapled to a board if you wanted to make more of a project out of it.

Pillows or Cushions

This option can work if you just need to work on patterns or more basic wrist motions and stuff like that. A pillow or cushion won’t give you a very believable replication of a drum surface, but it’s still something to hit to work on techniques that don’t require much stick definition.

Mesh Drum Heads

If you’re looking to make a more realistic drum with a silent surface for practicing on this could be an option. You could take any drum shell, take the resonant head off the bottom, and put a mesh drum head on it. This would essentially be a very quiet drum practice pad but it would be the same size and shape as a normal drum.