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Warming Up   You are logged in as Guest
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ArtZumer

Posts: 67
Joined: Aug. 4 2010
From: Brisvagas

Warming Up 

Hi everybody
I went to a hand specialist recently who recommended verious activities to do before playing guitar and at other times. Do you guys think streaching and warming up is necassary? If so, what exercises do you do, with or without the guitar?

Art
  REPORT THIS POST AS INAPPROPRIATE |  Date Oct. 15 2011 6:14:58
 
vigrond

 

Posts: 161
Joined: Nov. 30 2010
 

RE: Warming Up (in reply to ArtZumer

stretching is absolutely necessary. muscles need to be stretched and relaxed to perform the best as well as substantially reduce screwing up your hand.

I am not a doctor and some people warn against overstretching your wrists.

But I do find wrist stretches the best for me personally when prepping for guitar. Finger stretches or muscle massages don't seem to do it for me, but everything is worth experimenting with to see what works for you.

Here's some akido wrist stretches that I like to *gently* do.



This guy has many different stretches for wrists you can find on the relative videos.


There are also many yoga hand stretches, gymnastics hand stretches, and even a few guitar prep ones on there. (they like finger stretches and forearm massaging)

Just try a few and see what feels best.
  REPORT THIS POST AS INAPPROPRIATE |  Date Oct. 15 2011 7:33:26
 
Ricardo

Posts: 14984
Joined: Dec. 14 2004
From: Washington DC

RE: Warming Up (in reply to ArtZumer

no it is all mental. be prepared to perform that is all. the wrong tempo for example can make things feel all "wrong". Learn to relax and control what you are doing. Dont' worry about cold fingers, nails, sound, eq, chair height, sitting poistions, etc etc...just be prepared to play the best you can for every audience. That is all you can do.

If that doesn't work try cocaine.

_____________________________

CD's and transcriptions available here:
www.ricardomarlow.com
  REPORT THIS POST AS INAPPROPRIATE |  Date Oct. 15 2011 7:55:42
 
ArtZumer

Posts: 67
Joined: Aug. 4 2010
From: Brisvagas

RE: Warming Up (in reply to ArtZumer

quote:

If that doesn't work try cocaine.
Genious!

What I'm really talking about Ricardo isn't so much performance skills but keeping my health when I really start hammering at the practice. In context, I'll be finishing my final exams in a few weeks and with it my education. After this a want to begin just hammering away at the practice since I'll finally have time. However I know many people suffer problems from over practice and lack of practice preperation so I'm trying to organize myself a routine or schedule that will ensure that I don't lose my playing while trying to improve it.

Healthy body, healthy mind... healthy flamenco?
  REPORT THIS POST AS INAPPROPRIATE |  Date Oct. 15 2011 8:17:04
 
Ricardo

Posts: 14984
Joined: Dec. 14 2004
From: Washington DC

RE: Warming Up (in reply to ArtZumer

quote:

ORIGINAL: ArtZumer

quote:

If that doesn't work try cocaine.
Genious!

What I'm really talking about Ricardo isn't so much performance skills but keeping my health when I really start hammering at the practice. In context, I'll be finishing my final exams in a few weeks and with it my education. After this a want to begin just hammering away at the practice since I'll finally have time. However I know many people suffer problems from over practice and lack of practice preperation so I'm trying to organize myself a routine or schedule that will ensure that I don't lose my playing while trying to improve it.

Healthy body, healthy mind... healthy flamenco?


You can "over do it" by just playing a song in C minor with barre chords. The trick to playing a long time and not hurting your body is know how to not squeeze too hard, move in your chair, don't tense up, and things like that. One should be able to go at it for hours and hours with proper technique. Playing in its self IS a warm up. In other words.... all the supposed warm up and proper preparation in the world, will not save you from injury caused by bad technique and squeezing too hard and tensing up. It is more mental prep that needs to be done then physical.

_____________________________

CD's and transcriptions available here:
www.ricardomarlow.com
  REPORT THIS POST AS INAPPROPRIATE |  Date Oct. 15 2011 8:41:54
 
ArtZumer

Posts: 67
Joined: Aug. 4 2010
From: Brisvagas

RE: Warming Up (in reply to ArtZumer

quote:

The trick to playing a long time and not hurting your body is know how to not squeeze too hard, move in your chair, don't tense up, and things like that.

That's very true. I suppose that really comes with being very consciencious of pressure and movement ect. until it's embodied.

quote:

Playing in its self IS a warm up

True but surly you have to make a distinction between the intensity or level of a piece. I never start a practice session by jumping straight into a piece that is at the top of my level.
  REPORT THIS POST AS INAPPROPRIATE |  Date Oct. 15 2011 8:49:21
 
KMMI77

Posts: 1821
Joined: Jul. 26 2009
From: The land down under

RE: Warming Up (in reply to ArtZumer

I don't do any stretching or warm ups. What i try to do now is approach the guitar in a relaxed manner every time i pick it up. Now that i am getting older it's even more important.

If I pick up the guitar and immediately start hammering away, Chances of injury are obviously high. So whatever i decide to play first when i pick up the guitar, I focus on improving my ability to attack the strings in a relaxed manner, whatever the technique may be. The relaxed feeling should be there somewhere. Until i find it i don't go hard.

In the beginning i was unable to find any relaxed technique. But in the beginning I failed to look for it. I just kept forcing and trying to rectify problems at speed. Eventually i understood the advice numerous people had told me. So I slowed right down and began to discover the relaxed feeling.

Gigs are a problem because when i feel tense i have to keep going. Another reason to focus on relaxing when i'm at home. Finding the relaxed feeling makes a good warm up IMO.

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  REPORT THIS POST AS INAPPROPRIATE |  Date Oct. 15 2011 10:50:28
 
KMMI77

Posts: 1821
Joined: Jul. 26 2009
From: The land down under

RE: Warming Up (in reply to KMMI77

I once did a class with Jose Antonio Rodrigues. He was very big on stretches for warm up. He demonstrated a bunch of stretches that he uses. I remember thinking that they looked very excessive and even painful. Anyway, He actually demonstrated his stretches with a his forearm bandaged due to injury. It made me laugh I was thinking, No wonder your injured doing stretches like that.

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  REPORT THIS POST AS INAPPROPRIATE |  Date Oct. 15 2011 11:18:45
 
ArtZumer

Posts: 67
Joined: Aug. 4 2010
From: Brisvagas

RE: Warming Up (in reply to ArtZumer

Hmm interesting. I'll have to try put more of a focus on finding a state of relaxation. Personally I've found it's when I'm playing something that has very tense dynamics such as a rapid cresendo that I lose any sense of relaxation. It gets to the point were I'm holding my breath and hunching my shoulders till that passage has passed. It's really just because I'm so into the music but it could effect the control I have over the music.

Can anyone recommend any good ways or exercises for getting into a relaxed state of playing? I know I used to play scales or exercises while pressing as little as possible to make sound.
  REPORT THIS POST AS INAPPROPRIATE |  Date Oct. 15 2011 12:24:32
 
KMMI77

Posts: 1821
Joined: Jul. 26 2009
From: The land down under

RE: Warming Up (in reply to ArtZumer

quote:

Can anyone recommend any good ways or exercises for getting into a relaxed state of playing? I know I used to play scales or exercises while pressing as little as possible to make sound.


It's possible to play scales pressing as little as possible and still feel tense. An exercise is searching through different sensations until gradually the feeling of being relaxed, and in control, presents itself. It takes time and only happens step by step, technique by technique. When you find it there will be no doubt that you have. Turning the glimpse of relaxed technique into something you have control over is the hard part. But the more time one spends on it the better one seem to get.

For me it seems to involve developing new movements and then developing endurance. The mental side of things has to be overcome as well. To consciously be relaxed is where it's at. Then your mind is open to hear the music. Diverting from conscious relaxation tends to result in tension and lack of control. But it's easy to get distracted.

I made a similar statement to Jeronimo Maya. I said something like, i try and i just can't relax more. He said "That's because you don't practice playing relaxed"

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  REPORT THIS POST AS INAPPROPRIATE |  Date Oct. 15 2011 12:39:06
 
vigrond

 

Posts: 161
Joined: Nov. 30 2010
 

RE: Warming Up (in reply to ArtZumer

Seems like I'm alone in stretching -_-. This may be due to pretty much working on the computer all day, combined with playing guitar. I may be a special case . I do find stretching very helpful for the purpose of playing relaxed, which is the ultimate goal here.
  REPORT THIS POST AS INAPPROPRIATE |  Date Oct. 15 2011 20:59:51
 
KMMI77

Posts: 1821
Joined: Jul. 26 2009
From: The land down under

RE: Warming Up (in reply to vigrond

quote:


Seems like I'm alone in stretching -_-.


I certainly would not like to advise people not to stretch if it works for them. I also stretch and do exercises for the rest of my body. But i personally don't stretch my fingers or twist my wrists as a warm up.

Grisha has posted some detailed you tube videos showing the stretches and warm up exercises he uses. They have already been discussed in detail here on the foro.

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  REPORT THIS POST AS INAPPROPRIATE |  Date Oct. 15 2011 22:54:00
 
ArtZumer

Posts: 67
Joined: Aug. 4 2010
From: Brisvagas

RE: Warming Up (in reply to ArtZumer

quote:

I also stretch and do exercises for the rest of my body.

And there lies the next interesting question. To what extent is streaching and exercise of the rest of the body important to flamenco?

I personally find that when I play more than an hour and half a day for two or three weeks, I get shoulder pains which can become quite debilitating to my playing. Usurally exercise helps this to an extent.
  REPORT THIS POST AS INAPPROPRIATE |  Date Oct. 16 2011 4:06:03
 
Ricardo

Posts: 14984
Joined: Dec. 14 2004
From: Washington DC

RE: Warming Up (in reply to ArtZumer

quote:

I personally find that when I play more than an hour and half a day for two or three weeks, I get shoulder pains which can become quite debilitating to my playing. Usurally exercise helps this to an extent.


As you get older, it is still not going to help, the stretching and exercises etc. What you need to be doing instead is focus on your body WHILE YOU PLAY. What good is a long yoga session if the next thing you do is sit crossed legged or however you sit, and don't move, and tense up, and look down over your fingerboard in frozen position, for hours? You have to learn to move around while you play and if you do get tense, learn to release it while still playing. Practice in front of a mirror or video tape your self.

Exercise and stretching all that is fine for your body, but not simply to prepare yourself for the abuse you are about to subject it to playing the guitar. Make sure you can play the guitar comfortably and cold without hurting yourself first.

_____________________________

CD's and transcriptions available here:
www.ricardomarlow.com
  REPORT THIS POST AS INAPPROPRIATE |  Date Oct. 16 2011 16:10:05
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