Lactic Acid … Warm Down

Discussion in 'Trumpet Discussion' started by Liad Bar-EL, Oct 31, 2006.

  1. Liad Bar-EL

    Liad Bar-EL Forte User

    Oct 25, 2003
    Jerusalem, Israel
    First, I should mention that I do not have a Masters nor do I have a Doctorate in Physical Fitness nor am I a MD. I only talk to those people who have those degrees and I found some information which might be of interest to you all.

    When one exercises the muscles, we are also talking about the chops, lactic acid builds up in the muscles. Lactic acid is a natural by product of the muscles when they are put under stress (exercise). This acid is transferred from the muscles to the blood then to the liver where it is transformed into another energy source (no names and formulas please) which is then transferred back to the muscles to give it energy. This process takes time and it is because the process is slow, well slower than the person is willing to wait for him/her to continue exercising, that this lactic acid build up occurs. Why do we have lactic acid? I would imagine that it is a warning device for us not to abuse our bodies. Lactic acid makes the muscles stiff, makes them hurt, it can give muscles spasms and if not allowed to disperse, it will prevent the muscles from building back up again. How is this so?

    The muscles, when exercised, are giving you a warning through the stiffness, hurting, etc that they are being torn up, breaking down, etc so that you need to rest in order to have them build back up again. When they are rebuilt, they are built to a stronger state than what they were before you started exercising. This build up is very gradual and will not occur unless sufficient time of rest is given. This build up begins when the lactic acid is dispersed. How can one disperse (get rid of ) lactic acid from the muscles?

    WARM DOWN is one that is mostly used by athletes and pro trumpet players. Another method is massage, sauna baths, Jacuzzis and just plain rest.

    Rest takes the longest time to disperse lactic acid. 24 hours is the usual time for light to moderate exercising. For heavy exercising (i.e. weight lifting) it takes about 48 hours. All of these times can be shorted drastically if one were to end the exercises with warming down, sauna baths, Jacuzzis, etc. When the lactic acid is dispersed, then the muscles start to rebuild. I guess I mentioned this already.

    The building up of the muscles (chops) can be expedited (made faster) if one were to get rid of the lactic ASAP and this in turn would mean that one could play more, play sooner and of course play stronger. However, if you were to cut into the time of this muscle rebuilding time process, then your muscles (chops) will in effect keep tearing down, get weaker, etc. As they say that rest is just as important as exercise.

    WARMING DOWN techniques are not my specialties and I could improve on this; so, I will leave it to you all to list, if you would like to share that with us, as what you do to warm down.

    Liad Bar-EL
  2. note360

    note360 Piano User

    Oct 16, 2006
    In a room in a house
    This may just be my problem. With my body not being used to playing a hour straight of practice (with some minor breaks) I am proably getting a overdose of this stuff.

    One of my teachers told us about this. He didn't give use a technique, but I think it is basically a warmup bacwards. Instead of trying to get higher notes like in warm up you work down to the low notes. Basically practice your warmups backwards.
  3. wiseone2

    wiseone2 Artitst in Residence Staff Member

    Nov 19, 2003
    My warm- down used to be the walk to Jim and Andy's bar:cool:
  4. tromj

    tromj Piano User

    Jun 4, 2005
    Teaneck, NJ
    Sounds like a plan, Wilmer.
    I know a lot of guys that drink a decent amount of water during the gig to help flush the system, including the lactic acid.
  5. Solar Bell

    Solar Bell Moderator Staff Member

    May 11, 2005
    Metro Detroit

    My warm down is put the horn in case, get in the car and put on some Jimmie Smith, Count Basie or Harry James.

    Drive home and warm down with my wife.

  6. gzent

    gzent Fortissimo User

    Nov 5, 2003
    Rochester, MN
    I used to think warm-down was useful, but for the last couple years I gave it up with no noticeable difference.

    The most I do is rolling the lips in and out for a minute or so and slowly drinking in ice water over the top lip.

    I recall that Manny does not do a specific warm down either.
  7. Dale Proctor

    Dale Proctor Utimate User

    Jul 20, 2006
    Heart of Dixie
    My "warm down" (I wonder why it's not called a cool down?) consists of getting something to drink and slapping some ChopSaver on my lips. I don't warm up more than playing a scale or two, either.
  8. rowuk

    rowuk Moderator Staff Member

    Jun 18, 2006
    If it has been a hard gig, I play long tones on the mouthpiece on the way home. It generally makes getting started the next day easier. I don't know about lactic acid or not (what has been posted here makes sense), my face just feels tense sometimes and the long tones seem to reduce that tension.
  9. wiseone2

    wiseone2 Artitst in Residence Staff Member

    Nov 19, 2003
    In all seriousness, I don't warm down.
    I have never warmed down.
    I don't intended to start doing something that I have not done in the sixty years that I have played the trumpet.
    This works for me.
  10. krossum

    krossum Piano User

    Aug 23, 2005
    New York, NY, USA
    i warm down when the gig leader is being a jerk and demanding help loading out the PA...


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