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Trumpet Discussion Discuss Way too much Mouthpiece Pressure in the General forums; Originally Posted by trickg So how do you stop using excessive mouthpiece pressure? Simple - just stop doing it. That's ...
  1. #21
    Pianissimo User
    Join Date
    Feb 2010
    United Kingdom

    Re: Way too much Mouthpiece Pressure

    Quote Originally Posted by trickg View Post
    So how do you stop using excessive mouthpiece pressure? Simple - just stop doing it.

    That's the easy answer.

    The way I approach it when I find myself starting to use too much mouthpiece pressure is to work only on long tones until I get the problem corrected. I correct it by doing the following - I take a basic note like a G in the staff, start playing it as normal with normal pressure, and then I consciously start to reduce pressure. This is going to be frustrating on the first day because as soon as you start to reduce the pressure the note is going to break down into a double buzz, or it might stop speaking altogether. No problem - start again and do the same thing, and gradually but consciously reduce the amount of pressure you are using.

    Another technique is to take a lower note such as a low C, start to blow it normal volume, and then to try to reduce the volume to just a whisper, and again, reduce pressure at the same time. The idea is that the focus of your chops has to come from the chops themselves and not because they are forced into compliance with the rim and cup of the mouthpiece via arm pressure.

    I can usually get myself back to normal inside of a week, but it might take you longer.

    There are no tricks or shortcuts to getting better or fixing a problem. Often times fixing the problem or improving an aspect of your playing can be done with the simplest, most common sense approach, with the mindset that you have to be patient, dilligent, and you have to work on it in a systematic way. I think that patience is the key - grasping onto the idea that improvement take place over a matter of weeks and months rather than days is half the battle.
    Hi, sorry to go off subject but in terms of reducing pressure, you mean conciously pulling the horn away from the face? if i do this the note just goes flat? not creating a double buzz or anything. Still a full sound but just flat?!!
    Yamaha Xeno 20th Anniversary Edition
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  2. #22
    Forte User
    Join Date
    Jan 2009
    Clarksburg, WV

    Re: Way too much Mouthpiece Pressure

    Quote Originally Posted by Satchmo Brecker View Post
    I guess by "the grip" I meant how you hold the horn, not literally gripping the thing like a stressed out gorilla, which as you point out would not be good.

    The "standard" grip seems to me to lend itself to unnecessary pressure. The Maynard grip on the other hand seems more like just resting the horn on your hand, kinda like the palm trick somebody mentioned earlier.
    oops sorry, my bad.
    Do some of the various ways of holding the horn create more mouthpiece pressure than others?
    That's a good question.
    Optimally, you want to be able to use your slides. Slides are part of the trumpet for a reason. Unfortunately, many trumpet students are not taught to use their slides but that's another topic. By eliminating those "grip" methods where the fingers are not able to move the slides, only a few remain. They are basically a standard "grip" with deviations (which thumb moves the third valve slide and how far down the valve casing does the left hand rest). Hope this helps.

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