Can lip buzzing and mouthpiece buzzing become harmful if used to much?

Discussion in 'Trumpet Discussion' started by mctrumpet, Apr 10, 2008.

  1. tobylou8

    tobylou8 Utimate User

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    Gotcha!:thumbsup:
     
  2. rowuk

    rowuk Moderator Staff Member

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    I think that this resistance stuff is based on pseudo information.

    Resistance (actually impedance) from the horn comes from its EFFICIENCY. That means how much we are really playing on the resonant center. When we use just a mouthpiece, there is no resonance from the short shank. That is extremely INEFFICIENT.

    What is missing is that the trumpet sound is not an amplified buzz. The buzz gets a resonance in the horn started and THAT resonance actually forces the lips to vibrate in sync with the resonance.

    Understanding that puts a buzz into perspective. Its inefficiency helps to build muscle strength. As long as we don't "overdo" it to the point that the raw strength impedes the fine motor activity of the face muscles, everything is OK. Trumpet playing - even lead is not brute force. We need advanced muscle CONTROL not power. Buzzing does not help CONTROL. It can be a part of our daily routine, but does not replace time on the horn. To answer the original question: it CAN be overdone, rather the rest can be UNDERDONE in proportion.
     
  3. gmonady

    gmonady Utimate User

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    To people who have not done it, try the towel. Adjust the folds and tightness of the towel that remains comfortable to your lips and air stream. Then try to play a song into the towel. Work on the intonation of the notes you play. This is the most excellent exercise I know to advance muscle CONTROL.

    This is not in disagreement with the above post as I totally agree with what rowuk states in that post. But I offer my experience of trumpet playing over 40 years and 20 years I have had in working with Cystic Fibrosis (CF) patients where a priority I have is in maintaining the most important muscle they need to use - the diaphragm.

    The lips and diaphragm command the most CONTROL over our air stream. With the diaphragm of CF patients, I work with incentive spirometry and nutrition to maintain the diaphragm, and to try to make their breathing as RELAXED as possible. From relaxation and control the power to breath will come. Again just as stated by rowuk. Control learned by the lips through playing into the towel helps provide the fine adjustments with the LEAST effort possible to direct the ultimate response - the air stream into the attached horn - very relaxed, very efficient.

    My lead playing is at its best NOT when exerting maximal power from the diaphragm, but when I am relaxed, thanks to the coordination between the diaphragm and the lips - the initiation point and ending point of our control of the air flow.

    I thank my Cystic Fibrosis patients for teaching me the importance of the diaphragm.
     
  4. rowuk

    rowuk Moderator Staff Member

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    The diaphragm is one of the most misunderstood muscles in the body, being essentially the muscle for INHALING and having no reverse mode for "exhaling". Its geometry is quite unique. I am not aware of any synergy with the lips.

    I would be interested in what you do with the Cystic Fibrosis patients that involves inhaling.
     
  5. gmonady

    gmonady Utimate User

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    Ah, being able to relax it (the diaphragm). That is the secrete to exhaling. Just as you have so well stated in many of your posts. Relaxation and Practice. This sir is the genius behind the concepts.
     
  6. gmonady

    gmonady Utimate User

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    I would be interested in what you do with the Cystic Fibrosis patients that involves inhaling.

    FIRST and most important by maintaining the strength of the diaphragm (optimizing the muscle mass) through nutrition and aerobic exercise and if increased resistance is present, incentive spirometry (tone). This is the most vital way to enhance inhaling. The contraction then of this muscle creates the required negative pressure to allow entry of a volume of air. The greater the ability to contract (force) the greater the volume of air enters.

    THEN

    In CF, maximizing this volume of air (though the process of inhaling as noted above) that meets the most amount of surface area for air exchange (oxygenation) we work on opening up as much of the airway as possible, and most vital of which are the most distal where oxygen exchange is the greatest. Positive pressure techniques, such as flutter valves, then transmits back pressure through the airways more efficiently opening up terminal units for air exchange. Medications that relax smooth muscle* and minimize secretions^ (that if left unchecked increases resistance) also plays a vital role. This is accomplished through a series of exercises that are performed ideally at least twice a day.

    While the second paragraph following the THEN statement does not directly involve inhaling, the process following optimizes the air exchange that inhaling (contracting the diaphragm) initiated - a consequence of inhaling.

    *Anticholinergic agents tend to be better at this then the beta agonists due to effects related to loss of elasticity from the chronic inflammation over years of disease in these patients.
    ^There are many medications we use to minimize secretions
     
  7. tobylou8

    tobylou8 Utimate User

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    I talked to my old teacher today and mentioned this topic. He smiled and shook his head. I asked what was so funny? He said this was an ages old argument (he's in his 70's) that usually ended up with someone having hurt feelings. I didn't know what a hornets nest I had stirred! :-)
     
  8. gmonady

    gmonady Utimate User

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    It's not a hornet's nest at all. The answer is, can buzzing help: Yes. AND Can buzzing hurt: Yes. So both sides are correct.

    Once again, basic muscle physiology, if you buzz comfortably and without using excessive force, the muscles required to buzz will be toned and more responsive to fine control. If the buzzing is overdone, the muscle will be strained and damaged.

    So how do you know the difference or when the "fine line" is crossed? My advice is pain is our friend. When you start feeling pain (or strain) it is time to stop and give it a rest, until the next day, and start back up again.
     
  9. tobylou8

    tobylou8 Utimate User

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    I agree with you totally. Anything done to excess can be harmful.
     
  10. jsmiley89

    jsmiley89 New Friend

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    YES! A friend of mine- a senior in tpt perf whose playing and ability i respect quite a bit- took a lesson with Michael Sachs who told him to stop free buzzing (no mp) all together due to the fact that his embochure isn't yet strong enough to do it correctly. -And my friend is a player who's on the horn 6-8 hours a day, 6 days a week and can pull off some gnarly parts!

    In the same lesson, Sachs highly recommended a lot more mp-buzzing to work on response and centering the sound pitch-wise. Thought being that if you can do it well without the horn helping to slot your pitches, that when you add the horn, your response and slotting will be dead on (eventually).

    Obviously not everyone is the same, and even after hearing this I still do some free-buzzing (like 30-60 seconds in the morning) just to get the blood flowing. That said, unless you've got some real killer strength and your set is... well, set- then I'd be careful free buzzing very much, and definitely not for half an hour at a time!

    My 2 cents: listen to Michael Sachs
    Sach's 200 cents: Mp buzzing= good, free buzzing can be bad.
    :play:
     

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