Any tips/storys on how to improve playing stamina?

Discussion in 'The Rehearsal Room' started by Ray Woods, Mar 2, 2004.

  1. Ray Woods

    Ray Woods Member

    Please can I have any tips or any success storys for improving playing stamina - especially cornet players.

    I am a brilliant player for about 10 minutes, but then things start going downhill - lack of higher register, tone control etc.

    I have tried many techniques to try to help, but I would be particularly interested in your success story if you have any.

    My lack of success is getting me down. So much so, that I recently bought a trombone!

    Thanks for your help (and no doubt, humour).
  2. brasscrest

    brasscrest Active Member

    1. Always warm up properly - long and low is best for most people
    2. Don't overblow or force notes
    3. You may have a mouthpiece issue - try different brands/sizes - the shape of the rim may not fit your embouchure properly
    4. Make sure you're not using back pressure on the lip, especially when playing high - the more pressure you use, the more tired you'll get
    5. Play every day - even if you just warm up and then put the thing down, this will keep your lip supple

    If all else fails, become a drummer :shock: :D
  3. The Cornet King

    The Cornet King Active Member

    Oh good grief... :shock: Things must be bad!!! :eek:

    Yeh i'd mirror what has been said by Brasscrest. But i'd forget about the instrument/mouthpiece for now and work with what you have.
    For increased stamina, its boring old exercises that i have found work well.

    Particularly concentrate on playing quiet...pp and p and practice long notes. This will help stamina, control of the instrument and higher register later on.

    Also practice lip flexibilities. Slurs will help this at pp and p dynamic. Like Brasscrest said, dont force/overblow and try keep mouthpiece pressure down to a minimum.

    Hope things get better so you can quickly dispatch of that Trombone you bought! :lol:
  4. Well this is how I have been told to improve stamina - and it works. I don't get fatigue very often now......

    After a proper warm very aware of MP pressure.......

    Just play those first exercises in the Arban. BUT...when you need to breath, keep embouchure set, dont move it or remove MP, and nose breath..........This will improve your stamina.

    It really is boring as hell, but it does work.

    Regarding the high notes......I now play up to E above top C.....this has been done by not practicing high notes at all.....just strengthen the range you already have....

    Needless to say.....TY Roddy......
  5. James McFadyen

    James McFadyen New Member

    My problem is I have too much stamina! When I played lead trumpet in the Big Band, I could really feel I worked hard and was tired when I got home, but since I've returned to banding, I can't even work up a sweat, playing loud or even quiet for long periods of time has never been a problem for me. :)
  6. floral_dance

    floral_dance Member

    I wish I had your problem James. Just returned from practice tonight and we worked really hard on Kaleidascope and I am feeling really tired. Could do with some of your stamina :?
  7. I'm not sure if the ten minutes you talked about were in addition to warm-up, but if you dont want to do serious damage to your lips then you should warm up for at least 15 munutes at the start of each day plus another 5 for everytime you play after that throughout the course of the day. Of course it's possible to pull off a good practice session without warming up, but in the long term it will really bugger up an embouchure. I've always been a capable player, but it wasnt until i started taking warm ups seriously that I've had the stamina to tackle a concerto or extended piece of the like. Before this, I was restriced to solos that were often hard, but not really substantial in their length.

    On another point....some peoples muscles are genetically configured to do some things better than others. You'll notice that a bodybuilder has a huge bulky muscle mass, but probably couldnt lift a couple of dumbells up for more than 10 seconds at a time, however a little twig of a gymnast could hurl themselves around a high wire all day and never get tired...likewise, the best bass-end players will be people with stamina to burn, whereas ol' super chops on soprano mightent be able to play for as long, but they've got the right set-up happening to get up there that others mightent be able to muster up....

    I've rambled on alot, but i spose what I'm getting at is that finding the best instrument to suit you is always better than going gangbusters at something that mightent let you hit your full potential!

    Going from cornet to eupho saved me from certain musical death!!!
  8. davidquinlan

    davidquinlan Member

    If you're problems are that serious, I would recommend finding a teacher and going for some lessons.
    Advice you will get from this forum however good/bad may not be enough, you need an experience teacher to analyse your playing and hopefully recommend some changes in your playing that will help you.
  9. Jo Elson

    Jo Elson Member

    I would suggest inbetween rehearsals playing long notes, and keeping your lips in by just doing some playing everyday. Or if you haven't got time, then just vibrate your lips, kind of like if you were spitting. Its a bit tricky to start off sometimes but its very affective i find, although not very attractive and you do get some funny looks!
  10. BoozyBTrom

    BoozyBTrom Member

    Our Solo Euph player told me what he did to build his stamina up plus it helps to get your lip back in when you havent played for a while.

    It have used it a couple of times and it has worked for me.

    When your watching telly have your instrument with you. Watch the programmes you want to see but during the adverts play. CONSTANTLY. Using what ever Arban exercises you want. ( You do get better results with a practice mute but without works too). When the programme comes back on. Stop and put the instrument down. When the adverts appear again play once more. And so on.

    You can translate this to reading a book and stopping after a chapter or Playing computer games and stopping after each level. And playing for 5 minutes.

    I know it sounds weird but it does seem to work. after a few hours. ( Where you only may have played for 15 20 minutes. ) You go to your next rehearsal with a lip like steel.

    Its worth a try.
  11. Darth_Tuba

    Darth_Tuba Active Member

    Did you really think this post was helpful in any way? The person is asking for advice, and you use that as an excuse to tell everyone how great you are (a habit you have generally on the forum). Plus, playing in a band isn't exactly a marathon (a look at most bander's physiques would tell you that!), the stamina being discussed is in terms of the lip, not working up a sweat etc.

    Anyway, I'm not really the best for stamina, and I think my problems are down to too much pressure at times. It's always better for stamina to use air rather than lip to play higher/louder/etc. However, it's always so much easier to get lazy and ram on a bit more and it takes a lot of concentration to change if you are used to doing that. May not be anything to do with your problem, but there you go. If you are really struggling, I suggest you seek advice from someone more experienced and maybe have one or two lessons with a top player for some tips.
  12. James Yelland

    James Yelland Active Member

    Plenty of good advice in this thread, but forget Arban - get yourself the three Allen Vizzutti Trumpet Method books. They are far more useful and more relevant to trumpet/cornet playing in the 21st Century. Plenty of useful advice and exercises on warming up, low note studies, technical exercises - plus things absent from Arban, like irregular time signatures and mixed tonguing exercises. Just my £35 quids worth, anyway.
  13. Aidan

    Aidan Active Member

    play louder and quieter then... :p
    every player should sweat when they are really working
  14. Aidan

    Aidan Active Member

    total agreement!! :tup
    if arban is the bible, vizutti is a Q&A session with god!
  15. ScrapingtheBottom

    ScrapingtheBottom Active Member

    Want to work up stamina?

    You need,

    One mouthpiece
    Several lengths of hosepipe
    one brass instrument.

    You need to do:
    1) octave glissandi on the mouthpiece attached to a piece of hosepipe for about 15 -20 mins
    2) long low notes at ppppppp then ffffff (without cracking!!) for about 20 mins
    3) repeat as you feel necessary, increasing the length of tubing as it gets too easy (!)

    This has the added advantage of improving lip suppleness and volume range too.
  16. James McFadyen

    James McFadyen New Member

    Oh god, not extreme dynamics again - they hate them, honestly!!! OR.........Most probably they hate it when I use extreme dynamics ;)

  17. skweeky

    skweeky Member

    get a denis wick practise mute. play low C keep the mute buzzing. go down a semitone keep the mute buzzing. do ech note for as long as your breath lasts.

    keep going down 1 semitone each time to F# and then back up and then down again. Spend maybe half an hour doing this a day and your stamina will drastically, quickly improve.
  18. Darth_Tuba

    Darth_Tuba Active Member

    That's because those dynamics don't exist... bulb.
  19. Aidan

    Aidan Active Member

    what a weapon :roll: