Puffy cheeks

Discussion in 'Trumpet Discussion' started by Double_G, Oct 7, 2005.

  1. Double_G

    Double_G Pianissimo User

    May 4, 2005
    Gordonsville, TN
    I've noticed this week during my practicing that my cheeks have started to puff out when I play. It has never done this before and I don't know what to do. Any suggestions? Is it actually a sign of a good things i.e. me using more air and I just don't know how to control it yet.

    Please help, Dub G :-(
  2. Rick Chartrand

    Rick Chartrand Piano User

    Nov 22, 2004
    Toronto Canada
    I have been playing for 15 years and have never had such a problem. HOw old are you? Perhaps if you are an older player then your skin is just loosening up a little. If it isnt affecting your performance then I wouldnt worry about it. Dizzys cheeks went like that and look what that did for his career...made him even more popular :D

    Rick AKA Trumpet Man
  3. Double_G

    Double_G Pianissimo User

    May 4, 2005
    Gordonsville, TN
    I'm 16 and I've been playing for 7 years and I've never had this problem either. So, I don't really know what is going on.
  4. eisprl

    eisprl Mezzo Piano User

    Sep 26, 2004
    Halifax, NS CANADA
    I have been playing for 12 years myself and have also noticed that I am using more air which is increasing my high range like nothing else, but sometimes at the expence of puffy cheeks. I know they don't actually puff out like Dizzy's but enough for my prof to notice and point out for me during a rehearsal when playing the picc :oops: Now that I think about it, it isn't really a cheek puff that happens with me. It is more of a pocket of air under the cheek bones. But I don't do it that often anymore.

    If it is a big problem I say, just don't do it. That is what I tell myself when I notice it. Just don't do it ;-) then I stop.

    Simple as that
  5. trumpet blower88

    trumpet blower88 Mezzo Piano User

    Jun 15, 2005
    Flagstaff, AZ
    I had the same problem last year. I was in the same position time-wise too, I was 16 and had been playing about 7 years. It was actualy right in the middle of the time that I was really advanceing, but it was also during a time for a month or two that I felt like I was doing worse than I had been (like a bump in the road). I think it was like you said, learning to use more air, but not yet being able to control it.

    What worked for me and what I would suggest to you is just really focus on fighting the tendency to puff out. The muscles in your cheeks will get stronger and soon you won't have to worry about them puffing out becuase you'll be used to it and get back to normal again.

    But in my opinion it really is a serious problem, it set me back a month or two right in the middle of a time where I felt I was really improveing. If I focused more on the problem than I did it probably would have only been a week or so, but I didn't realize it was so big of a problem and I let it drag out.

    So just be careful and good luck!
  6. Pedal C

    Pedal C Mezzo Forte User

    Jan 24, 2005
    I haven't really had this problem, but what usually works for my students is, when you feel the cheeks puff, play the same passage on the mouthpiece alone. Usually the cheeks stop puffing, then go back to the trumpet. (this isn't a quick fix, it takes some practice and attention). Also, keep the air moving. If you back away with the air, the face will have to do odd things to compensate and probably make you continue to puff.

    Occasionally my upper lip puffs out when I play the piccolo. I usually chalk it up to just "one of those things' and it goes away.

    Good luck!

  7. Rondawg

    Rondawg New Friend

    Oct 10, 2005
    I only have this trouble when I'm tensing up and not letting the air flow natural and relaxed.

    To fix it imagine you have something extremely sour in your mouth.

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