Practice Routine

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William Byrd
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Practice Routine

Post by William Byrd » Sat Mar 16, 2019 11:36 pm

Hello Everyone,

I am currently studying in D01 and a relative beginner. I struggle with what is a good practice routine. I find the best time for me to practice is before work, usually 5 am - 6:15 and I do practice everyday. What I'm currently doing provides structure and routine, but I am not sure if it is the best path.

I would greatly appreciate any advice on how to improve this or if need be, completely revamp it.

10 min: Fundamentals (finger alternation exercises, vertical and horizontal exercises, etc.)
6 min: scales (Aaron Shearer "Scale Pattern Studies for Guitar)
6 min: Arpeggios (Hubert Kappel "The Bible of Classical Guitar Technique")
6 min Giuliani right hand studies
6 min sight reading (Robert Benedict Levels 1-3)
15 min: Studies (currently Sor Op 44)
20 min Repertoirer (From Delcamp and F. Noad Solo Guitar Playing Vol 1)

Bill

I also use a timer to stay on track.
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1964 Seizo Shinano No 83
2002 Asturias Standard
2010 Hiroshi Komori No 35

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Kent
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Re: Practice Routine

Post by Kent » Sun Mar 17, 2019 12:58 am

The first thing I would do is get rid of the timer.

Tonit
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Re: Practice Routine

Post by Tonit » Sun Mar 17, 2019 1:20 am

I would add one item:

1 hour: A sort of image training: Listen to good performances, meditate and develop imagination.

This is indispensable because all the physical strengths developped out of the other 75 min goes into this to realize the results finally.

And I would think of PDCA cycle, and would keep some open windows in the 75min physical workouts.
As you Do or play your pieces as Planned, you can Check or evaluate your performances subjectively, then that would direct your Actions ahead in the physical workouts.

All in all, IMPO the key is to remind the purpose of the physical workouts at all times, and adjust your paths accordingly so you can arrive at where you want to be at. In a word, we need a focus on our study more than spreading out across building overall strengths. When we think we have mastered one area of focus, then we move on to the next focus. I think this linear approach works better than spreading out our time resources to small bites of everything.

Good luck and cheers,

William Byrd
Student of the online lessons
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Location: Tokyo, Japan

Re: Practice Routine

Post by William Byrd » Sun Mar 17, 2019 2:29 am

Kent wrote:
Sun Mar 17, 2019 12:58 am
The first thing I would do is get rid of the timer.
I don't strictly stick to the regimen on the timer and do deviate quite often if I encounter something difficult that needs additional time. I found that without some sort of timer, so I am aware of the time 70-75 minute time constraint, my practice time wasn't as focused and often times I felt that I had not accomplished anything and my time was wasted.
1964 Seizo Shinano No 83
2002 Asturias Standard
2010 Hiroshi Komori No 35

William Byrd
Student of the online lessons
Posts: 282
Joined: Sun Jun 17, 2018 1:42 am
Location: Tokyo, Japan

Re: Practice Routine

Post by William Byrd » Sun Mar 17, 2019 2:39 am

Tonit wrote:
Sun Mar 17, 2019 1:20 am
I would add one item:

1 hour: A sort of image training: Listen to good performances, meditate and develop imagination.

This is indispensable because all the physical strengths developped out of the other 75 min goes into this to realize the results finally.

And I would think of PDCA cycle, and would keep some open windows in the 75min physical workouts.
As you Do or play your pieces as Planned, you can Check or evaluate your performances subjectively, then that would direct your Actions ahead in the physical workouts.

All in all, IMPO the key is to remind the purpose of the physical workouts at all times, and adjust your paths accordingly so you can arrive at where you want to be at. In a word, we need a focus on our study more than spreading out across building overall strengths. When we think we have mastered one area of focus, then we move on to the next focus. I think this linear approach works better than spreading out our time resources to small bites of everything.

Good luck and cheers,
Thank you for the very insightful words. I do listen to and watch various artists on YouTube and find it inspiring and beneficial. I actually had to look at what a PDCA cycle was as I wasn't familiar with it. I try and keep windows open during my practice time, especially when I encounter things I feel need additional time. This needs to happen more often than not.

I like the idea of redirecting my efforts based on your suggestion: "As you Do or play your pieces as Planned, you can Check or evaluate your performances subjectively, then that would direct your Actions ahead in the physical workouts."

I will adjust what I am doing and have more of a focus on specifics rather than spreading out my time into small bites. It makes tremendous sense.

I greatly appreciate your time and sound advice. I will implement it going forward.

:merci:

Bill
1964 Seizo Shinano No 83
2002 Asturias Standard
2010 Hiroshi Komori No 35

robert e
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Re: Practice Routine

Post by robert e » Sun Mar 17, 2019 7:28 pm

Personally, I think this is an admirable practice schedule for grade 1. It will evolve as you do, but for now, knowing only that you are at grade 1 and nothing else about you, I think it will do. I'm not a teacher, though. I have studied CG for many years, with and without teachers.

The following may be just reapeating what Tonit said in different words, but at some point in your development, you will want to start with a 10 minute warmup routine and then be more flexible about how you allocate the rest of practice time, and those activities will have more specific focus, driven by specific strengths and weaknesses, planned progress, and repertoire. It's probably too soon for this, though. Your practice will pretty naturally evolve toward that.

One piece of advice I do have for you is to make time to hear and watch the best musicians perform live. The more up close the better. The more accomplished the better. The more you learn as a musician, the more you are able to learn from watching other musicians. Guitarists are ideal but you can learn a lot from close observation of musicians of all kinds. And ask questions if you can. I find conservatory recitals, chamber recitals and jazz clubs the best places to do this, but that will depend on your location.

EDIT: This is important: stand up and stretch every 10 or 15 minutes! Even better--walk around the room and shake out your arms and loosen your neck.

Terpfan
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Re: Practice Routine

Post by Terpfan » Sun Mar 17, 2019 8:18 pm

I would concentrate on pieces, Sor and Noad. Would do technique exercise during weekend when I have more time. At your level, enjoying the guitar is more important than exercises.(unless you enjoy them also)

Tonit
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Re: Practice Routine

Post by Tonit » Sun Mar 17, 2019 9:07 pm

Terpfan wrote:
Sun Mar 17, 2019 8:18 pm
enjoying the guitar is more important than exercises.(unless you enjoy them also)
Big yes.
And hopefully yes for the rest of the guitar journey.
Commitments without love leads to a divorce. I can tell, unfortunately.

William Byrd
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Re: Practice Routine

Post by William Byrd » Sun Mar 17, 2019 9:13 pm

Thank you for all of the advice. I can see myself evolving as I gain more confidence.

Thanks for the reminder about standing up and stretching as well. I do get a bit stiff after sitting for a while, plus a brain break is probably good as well.

Bill
1964 Seizo Shinano No 83
2002 Asturias Standard
2010 Hiroshi Komori No 35

Jason
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Re: Practice Routine

Post by Jason » Sun Mar 17, 2019 10:31 pm

I have to agree with Kent, ditch the timer, you don't need it :)
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Alan Green
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Re: Practice Routine

Post by Alan Green » Sun Mar 17, 2019 11:10 pm

Needs more time on the repertoire. Cut down the others by a couple of minutes each and knock 5 minutes off the studies section

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Mollbarre
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Re: Practice Routine

Post by Mollbarre » Sun Mar 17, 2019 11:21 pm

The time suggestions are useful, just so you have an idea of how to divvy up your time, but I wouldn't use a timer either.

You don't need to practice all at once either, practice in shorter intervals if that works better.

But - do post a list of all the things to practice by your music stand and try and do some of each daily, as best you can (don't get too uptight or obsessive - this is supposed to be fun!).

Why? We are all guilty of spending more time on the things we like or that come easily. So we tend to practice what we do best and neglect what we find hard. If we don't address this, we get better at what we're good at and never improve in our problem areas. At some point you'll peak, get frustrated and wonder why you're not progressing even though you're putting in the time.
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William Byrd
Student of the online lessons
Posts: 282
Joined: Sun Jun 17, 2018 1:42 am
Location: Tokyo, Japan

Re: Practice Routine

Post by William Byrd » Mon Mar 18, 2019 7:49 am

Thank you all for the input. At this point of my journey, it is all very overwhelming to say the least. There are so many technical things to focus on, while at the same time trying to read the music and get the right and left hands to do what they are supposed to be doing. One thing I have learned and do adhere to is GO SLOW. And most of the time, I need to go even slower.

Advice taken. The timer is history. I will focus more on warm up and repertoire during the week and perhaps one or two other things. I do devote more time on the weekend so I will try and incorporate more of what I have in the above plan on the weekend.

Again, thank you for taking the time to reply and offer up your advice and experience. I greatly appreciate it.

Bill
1964 Seizo Shinano No 83
2002 Asturias Standard
2010 Hiroshi Komori No 35

Rasqeo
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Re: Practice Routine

Post by Rasqeo » Mon Mar 18, 2019 9:38 am

I actually think the timer is a great idea to keep you focussed, especially if your time is limited. You can always build some flexibility into it. I think you have a good range of items so you’re not neglecting anything.

I disagree with those saying there is too much technique. The better your technique, the better your playing and enjoyment of repertoire will be. The only exception would be if you hate doing technique. Then I would say just focus on repertoire.

The only other thing I would say is to think about incorporating at least one short break. One hour and 15 minutes is a long time to stay focused imo. I take a break every 30-40mins but everyone is different so find what works for you. Don’t forget it’s not just the mind that needs to rest. Some strecthing at the end would be good too.

William Byrd
Student of the online lessons
Posts: 282
Joined: Sun Jun 17, 2018 1:42 am
Location: Tokyo, Japan

Re: Practice Routine

Post by William Byrd » Tue Mar 19, 2019 2:02 am

Rasqeo wrote:
Mon Mar 18, 2019 9:38 am
I actually think the timer is a great idea to keep you focussed, especially if your time is limited. You can always build some flexibility into it. I think you have a good range of items so you’re not neglecting anything.

I disagree with those saying there is too much technique. The better your technique, the better your playing and enjoyment of repertoire will be. The only exception would be if you hate doing technique. Then I would say just focus on repertoire.

The only other thing I would say is to think about incorporating at least one short break. One hour and 15 minutes is a long time to stay focused imo. I take a break every 30-40mins but everyone is different so find what works for you. Don’t forget it’s not just the mind that needs to rest. Some strecthing at the end would be good too.
Thanks for weighing in. In fact, I don't mind technique at all, so I suspect that will be a plus in my ongoing development. I will take your advice for taking a break after 30-40 minutes. I tend to feel mentally exhausted if I don't incorporate a break.

Bill
1964 Seizo Shinano No 83
2002 Asturias Standard
2010 Hiroshi Komori No 35

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