Welcome to Weekly Trumpet Tips:
(1) Rebuilding Chops From Time Off
(2) Warming Up Effectively
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Tip #1 – Rebuilding Chops From Time Off!
It’s that time of the summer where I start getting calls from students that pulled a Houdini in May and disappeared from lessons. Marching band, school auditions (college) and other things are now starting to close in on them… but they haven’t played since the last time they “had” to in May / early June!
My best advice to coming back is to A: STOP the “no playing” game immediately and play daily! As you start to come back, play in short lengths of time and take frequent breaks! Focus on your SOUND! Most players notice that their sound is airy and uncontrolled at first. Playing long tones softly as well as Clarke #1 will help refocus the aperture.
Stay AWAY from upper register playing for the first few days and work on building sound and getting muscles back into the swing of playing. Within a week or two, the chops should start to refocus and you can incorporate upper register work.
Tip #2 – Warming Up Effectively
The times that I have had to rush or stop my warm up prematurely were times that my playing suffered long term. Whether it be over all range or a shortened endurance due to tension creeping in while playing too hard too soon.
My best warm up is started early in the day, playing for about 5 to 10 minutes and then putting the horn down for an hour or more. Coming back to it, I start back with flexibility exercises and continue with them on and off for several more hours (more off than on). Taking it slow always seems to prep me for the hard playing that I typically do! Give this a try before your next gig and see how it works for you.
“Today I will do what others won’t, so tomorrow I can accomplish what others can’t.”
Have a GREAT week!