Size does matter. Very difficult if not impossible to play a large bowl with a small stick. I always try to match the size of the stick to the size of the bowl. Once you get the correct size of stick then change the type of stick you are using to change the sound your bowl makes. I love it. It is like getting a new bowl by just changing the stick. So many different styles of sticks and mallets to choose from. The Red Felt Medicine stick is more dense and more firm creating more of a vibration. Wood make a different sound than leather. Dark wood is hard wood and is suppose to give you a more clear sound. Felt sticks create more vibration which is useful for healing. The white felt is softer less vibrations. Because each bowl has it's own personality some bowls will change dramatically with stick types Other will give you a deeper or richer sound or more volume. The more you use your sticks or mallets the better they become. Sticks and mallet are a great way to play around and discover the unique hidden personalities of your bowls.