Practice Routing

Practice Routine

Consistent practice is a very important part of realizing performance goals. In utilizing the simple university credit system, consider that an undergraduate performance major (receiving 3 hours of credit for Applied Trumpet) should be practicing a minimum of 3 hours each day. Students receiving 2 hours of credit (BME & BA) should be practicing a minimum of 2 hours a day. Non-majors, those receiving 1 hour credit, should be practicing 1 hour per day. Remember that time spent in ensembles does not constitute time spent practicing!

Consider the following practice rubric:
     Maintaining your current proficiency = 1 hour every day
     Progressing a small amount = 2 hours every day
     Progressing at a moderate rate = 3 hours every day
     Progressing at a high rate = 4 hours every day
     Preparing for a Recital, Audition, or Competition = 5-6 hours every day

PRACTICING
Divide your day into three sections with the idea of working on different aspects in each practice session. Set up a schedule so that it works for you and stick to it!! Always play musically and end each session with a lyrical selection. A metronome should be utilized on a regular basis. Remember that progress is accumulative and takes time – Don't try to accomplish everything at once!

Session #1:
Morning (Duration: 20-30 minutes)
This is primarily a warm-up session that should be completed prior to your first class, if possible. It is a vital part of your daily regimen which, when done properly, will help you improve and avoid serious injury. Buzz! Concentrate on the most basic aspects of producing music. Care should be taken to Breathe Deeply and Relax before beginning to play. Strive for an expanding breath, a resonant tone, a steady air flow, and superb intonation. Use a metronome some of the time and finish with a lyrical selection. Sources for the Warm-up might include the books of Grabowski, Plog, Schlossberg, and/or Stamp.

Session #2:
Morning/Afternoon (Duration: 60 minutes)
The work session! Develop and Practice a Routine! Use this time to practice all of those necessary things, including:
     Scales: major, minors, dorian, phrygian, lydian, mixolydian, whole tone, blues, & chromatic
     Arpgeggios: major, minor, augmented, & diminished
     Tonguing: single, double, triple, mixed articulations
     Technical Studies: Clarke
     Transposition
     Flexibility
     Etudes and other lesson materials
     Range exercises or studies for building strength & endurance
     Lyrical selection

Session #3:
Evening (Duration: 60 – 90 minutes)
Focus!!! Use this time to work on:
     Additional lesson/etude material
     Solo repertoire (Jury or Recital) – “run” a program
     Orchestral excerpts
     Improvisation
     Piano, Secondary, or other instruments
     Ensemble parts

*Remember why you are practicing – what are your goals!?!
*Be Patient! Work methodically (in small sections) and Use a metronome!
*Mark changes into your music so that you remember them. Use a pencil!
*Always play with the best possible singing sound and sense of musicianship!

Copyright ©2017 Randy Grabowski, trumpet, All Rights Reserved.