Breathing issues

Discussion in 'Trumpet Discussion' started by the newbie, Dec 21, 2011.

  1. the newbie

    the newbie Pianissimo User

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    Jan 27, 2011
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    I used to work for an old lady who had me fill her car with gas every week regardless if it was half full, nearly empty, or nearly full. She liked to fill-up regularly, I on the other hand would drive my car until it was almost empty, then go fill it up.

    2 approaches, i liked her way better.

    Back to the trumpet, i have been filling my lungs with deep breaths today and with an open throat, (when i remember to... its easy to revert to the old bad way where i'd breath in through my mouth and down low to the diaphram area which i now understand to be wrong, i should be filling my lungs and chest.) and i have to say its much better, my notes are clearer through my range, my attack is phenominal! I can play much longer and best of all i'm not tired and out of breath afterwards!! Big improvement. The full chest of air just gets topped up at the notations with more nice cool air down the back of my throat. Thats is how i know im opening my throat by feeling the column of COLD air going down my throat, before i didnt get that and was just breathing in air to my abdomin without opening my throat, therefore when i let the air out my throat remained closed.

    But as this new technique is very new to me, i kept going back to the bad way unconsciously, but when i remind my self what im doing i nail it and it is much better.

    Just gotta keep practising this way and it should become second nature.

    But i think its better to have the tank full, and regulary fill it, the old lady i worked for never had to walk to the gas station with a cannister like i often did! ;-)
     
  2. rowuk

    rowuk Moderator Staff Member

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    The bottom line here isn't how "full" of it we are (air or otherwise). Two things come immediately to mind:

    1) those with no experience messing up others because their own scope is so narrow. Why can't you guys just ask questions instead of faking expertise.

    2) arguing about how full full is. The real answer is improving body use so that we can fill up without tensing up and then with that reduced tension, letting the air flow through the horn. Once our bodies are cooperative, we do not need to measure, we just make BIG music instead of wimpy arguments!

    3) like Local said, breathing marks are also key to keeping us out of trouble. We need to put them in the score at the very first reading and then STICK TO THEM. If we do not practice them, especially the lesser experienced can get into BIG trouble. The finest music is made with pencils!

    The very first post in this thread is the classic tension description. Air backing up is only a symptom - not the real problem. address the symptom and the problem remains. Fix the problem and a lot of symptoms disappear.


    Inhaling with the lungs half full is not my recipe for success. I prefer filling up and breathing as the music dictates. The BIG breath gives us more range, endurance and sound. Intelligent body use and practice help us to optimize the experience. Air is free, why skimp?
     
  3. the newbie

    the newbie Pianissimo User

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    ROWUK is correct, i was playing with too much tension, my throat was closing and it was all because i was breathing wrong. I was taking in air but not really letting it all out.

    my posts could seem confusing after all, truth be known, i am totally self taught and have been "trying" to teach myself for 2.5 years, so i am totally in the dark here, and the Arbans studies i am stuck on... well... they are actually the very FIRST studies, (dont laugh please) but they are a big step for me playing at that low speed 60 and holding each note for 4 beats. My notes sound good, there is no problems there, from low F# to top line F. (I can hit a G on top and sometimes above it, but i'm not gonna claim them yet) Its just moving up the register and my stamina or endurance that needs work.

    Most of my time thus far has been focused on learning scales major/minor/chromatic and how to read music which i have plus learn a handful of easy songs, but, only now i am really getting to get the whole breathing thing.

    But since this post i have crossed a bridge, so thanks guys.
     
  4. gmonady

    gmonady Utimate User

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    Playing Relaxed
    Playing Open Throat with Good Breath Support
    Knowing were and Playing into the Sweat Spot

    The Holy Trilogy of Trumpet Playing
    AND ALL IS GOOD!

    Amen
     
  5. rowuk

    rowuk Moderator Staff Member

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    In my day the trilogy was:

    Shut up and listen
    Do as I say
    Enjoy the results

    I guess my teachers were just tough.
     
  6. Trumpet screams

    Trumpet screams New Friend

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    Dec 20, 2011
    We hear so much about breathing and how instrumental it is in good trumpet playing. Someone such as yourself is obviously putting out a great deal of effort and you seem quite serious about your playing. I think what I am seeing here with you is you may be trying to hard to focus on the
    breathing. Try to relax with this breathing thing. Practice a few times before ever placing you trumpet to your lips by just inhaling and exhaling.
    Don't take breaths so deep to the point of being uncomfortable. Take a nice breath and play a long note until you begin to run out of air and repeat. Do this daily for awhile until you start to get comfortable with playing comfortably and relaxed. Repetition is the key here. Then as you begin to play your sheet music, you should find your breathing and phrasing start to become second nature to you. You will get this down with daily practice. As you become more advance, and pursue towards the upper register you will then need to get into using your diaphram to give you solid air volume, but that will come with time and some instruction from someone whom has already mastered it. Good luck my fellow trumpet player. Focus your efforts, but don't forget to relax. Hopefully this all makes sense and will be of some benefit to you. Proper breathing control is a must.
    I think you will find it to be easier than you thought. Be patient with yourself in acquiring these new skills and it will pay off!

    Trumpet Screams 30 years playing
    Equipment: Bach 43 Stradivarius,1.25 C Megatone
     
  7. gmonady

    gmonady Utimate User

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    Maybe my musician's life has been more protected (literally - note my reply to Wilmer), but your experienced trilogy comes VERY close to detailing my other career as a physician as related to my consultants, with one minor edit [IN CAPS]

    Shut up and listen
    Do as I say
    Enjoy MY results

    My consultants are often times pompous jerks!
     
  8. kingtrumpet

    kingtrumpet Utimate User

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    WOW - if I ever have a desire to take lessons with "no-nonsense" people I will call you and gmonady up --- at least I would always know how the next lesson would be -- no guesswork in what the teacher expects next week!!!!!!!!!! ROFL ROFL ROFL

    I try to always breathe -- relaxed, and sometimes "pencil in" or put it in my mind where I have to breathe, and where it makes the most "musical sense" -- in other words -- sometimes I breathe a little sooner, if there is a longer phrase coming up --- so I keep the "musicality" in context ----
     
    Last edited: Dec 23, 2011
  9. rowuk

    rowuk Moderator Staff Member

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    Actually...................
    my lessons are MUCH different that you think. Once you have experienced a good working basis for playing, YOU do not want to go back to the previous lopsided approach. I generally do not need emotional pressure with my students. We are too busy having fun with the music!

    That is why it often sounds tough here in my posts. I pick up the missing fun factor very early in posting. Most of the time that is based on very one-sided approaches to the instrument. The only solution is to address the basics - not doctor the symptoms.

    I have been very lucky with my teachers. They had patience until I shut up and listened, never grew tired of waiting for me to do as they said and enjoyed the results with me. Most of them get a compilation CD for Christmas of what I have done in that year.
     
    Last edited: Dec 24, 2011
  10. gmonady

    gmonady Utimate User

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    Rowuk, you are truly a gifted teacher, this I can read well within you postings. Not intended as an insult, but you are truly a trumpet doctor. If you do not go to first work out and work through the basics, you will be left with nothing but symptoms that will only eat up the teacher's time and frustrate the student. You, dear Rowuk, know how to cut to the basic and run with it. And as we know from the German origins of the word doktor, it means teacher. In the true sense from the origins of that word, Rowuk, you ARE a doctor. How I wish my other non-musical profession would once again find meaning in that title... doctor. As I am finding, being a REAL doctor is a lost art.

    Thanks again Rowuk for bringing us the art in the form of a true doctor (doktor). When you speak, we listen AND most of us hear. There are several readers that may not listen well, but once they HEAR you, they can learn.

    May you and your family have the Merriest Christmas!
     
    Last edited: Dec 24, 2011

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