how to develop endurance

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how to develop endurance

Post by norbie2018 » Thu Jul 12, 2018 2:31 pm

So I'm planning to do a recital at a local church this winter and decided to play through a couple of tunes I plan on playing. They're not performance ready, but I thought it'd be a good idea to run straight through them. My chops were trashed before I got through two of them and I'll be playing 2-3 more plus at least a couple for trombone and voice. How do I go about building up the endurance I needed to make it through a full recital? I'm not in school and trembling is an avocation for me. Thanks!
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Re: how to develop endurance

Post by Geordie » Thu Jul 12, 2018 4:37 pm

Proper warm up. Long notes. Lip flexibilities. Daily, frequently with rest and recovery between sessions/exercises. Warm down. As well as working on the pieces and other things you enjoy. Remember it’s fun!
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Re: how to develop endurance

Post by Mikebmiller » Thu Jul 26, 2018 8:13 am

Play more. You don't ride the Tour de France by training 50 miles a week. And plan breaks in between tunes. Tell jokes and re-lube your slide a lot.
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Re: how to develop endurance

Post by hyperbolica » Thu Jul 26, 2018 9:07 am

I used to play 4-6 hours a day. I could play high and loud for hours.

I got that way by asking questions on a forum, and by taking health supplements.

Not really. I got that way by playing 4-6 hours a day. I played stuff that wore me out. Was it uncomfortable sometimes? yes. Did it require work? yes. Was I tired and worn out sometimes? yes.

There is a line between working hard and hurting yourself. That line is a lot farther away than you think it is. If you can only play for 30 minutes now, try playing 35, taking a break, and then come back to it. Play high and low, loud and soft. Play Arbans interval studies as fast as you can (while still getting all the notes). Play lip slurs, long tones, practice memorizing standards, hymns, improvising, scales, chords. Rochut, Bitsch, clef studies, real music and musical exercises, excerpts, duets with friends, ensembles, first parts, bass parts. You build endurance blowing into your horn, completely separate from what you play. Just do a lot of it, of course you have to make sure you're practicing good habits.

You'll know how much is too much, if your lips just lock up and won't do it, if they start bleeding, if your teeth get loose, if your pitch or sound drop off, or if any of it just starts to hurt. You're not going to gain endurance by sitting on the couch, just like Geordie says, you have to push yourself like an athlete to improve. It's a mental game as much as physical.
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Re: how to develop endurance

Post by Savio » Thu Jul 26, 2018 2:25 pm

Maybe practice on using as little effort as possible? Try out things that make your lips feel ok? It takes some time but it will come.

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Re: how to develop endurance

Post by Bach5G » Thu Jul 26, 2018 9:59 pm

Join a good concert band.
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Re: how to develop endurance

Post by Doug Elliott » Thu Jul 26, 2018 11:21 pm

Brass quintet
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Re: how to develop endurance

Post by imsevimse » Fri Jul 27, 2018 12:12 am

Practice for at least 4 hours. Take a lot of short breaks. Make sure you practice soft long phrases with flow. Focus on doing your best possible sound. If you own a minus-one record run through that every day in the end of your session. Record yourself. Find a big band where you can play lead. First part in a big band gives you good chops if you are doing it right. Brassband is good as well as brass quartet, quintet or sextet.

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Re: how to develop endurance

Post by baileyman » Fri Jul 27, 2018 6:57 am

Tough subject. It's tempting to think it's an athletic training issue. But having been where endurance was hard work and now where it feels like hardly working, I'm wondering how could I have gotten here easier.

I think I would try to find the note that takes the least effort to play. This one would be the one that vibrates with the most relaxed embouchure possible. Even totally relaxed chops have some tension, otherwise you'd be a mouth-breather. Though it seems there is just a smidge more tension required to get a freebuzz going. I just tried it and got a second partial Bb, but it could have just as relaxedly been third partial F. Or something else. (I did it freebuzz, but on the horn works, too.)

Whatever note comes out, get familiar playing it with no effort.

The process would then be to add notes above and below that also take no effort. The trombone slide is a marvelous tool for this. It would seem that higher notes must take more and lower notes less, but that does not seem correct to me. Rather, the note that comes out with the totally relaxed chops will depend on what kind of volume there is in the mouth cavity. Change the volume and the note changes, over quite a broad range with seemingly no effort.

I think this could have gotten me to the spot where I am now. Instead of becoming more capable of doing more heavy lifting, find a way to avoid the lifting altogether.
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Re: how to develop endurance

Post by afugate » Fri Jul 27, 2018 7:04 am

Savio wrote:
Thu Jul 26, 2018 2:25 pm
Maybe practice on using as little effort as possible?

This was very important for me. It's amazing how much more endurance I have now that my embouchure mechanics are better.

--Andy in OKC
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