Violin Practice

Clayton Haslop

To get the best results from violin practice, learn to play the violin in chunks of 50 minutes with 10 minute breaks. When the 10 minute break is over, begin the violin practice again practicing for 50 minutes. Then after the 2nd 50 minute practice session, take a half hour break so your mind and body can fully rejuvenate.

You can do as many of these chucks as you like, just remember to keep each session to a maximum of 50 minutes. When first learning how to play the violin you can easily become tired, as your arm and hands will be in positions for a long period of time that are not normal for you. For that reason, stop practicing the violin when you become tired.

For every violin practice session, using a timer can be very helpful so that your attention is fully engaged with playing the violin and not on the time. When learning anything for the first time, we have to concentrate and ask questions that little bit more.

Practicing the violin frequently throughout the week can be more effective than practicing in one big time block for just one or two days of the week.

Many people find it very useful to practice in front of a mirror. This way you can see yourself bowing in the center of the strings as well as keeping the bow straight.

The only time you will waver your bow is when you want to increase or decrease the tone. To increase the tone, bow nearer the bridge of the violin. If you want to decrease the tone, play the bow nearer the fingerboard.

The other reason a mirror is useful for violin practice is because you will be able to see your stance and the way you are holding the violin. This will force you to correctly learn the correct posture from the start.

When learning the violin you do not want to progress to the next violin lessons leaving a load of mistakes in your trail. Master each component before you move on. This way you will not have to unlearn a load of mistakes in the future. As we all know, the longer we practice something, whether right or wrong, it can be become more difficult to unlearn that habit.

Make sure the environment for violin practice is quiet so that you will not be interrupted. Turn off your ipod, television, put your phone on silent or switch it off and turn off any distracting instant messengers on your computer.

Wear loose clothes that allows you to easily adapt to the demands of moving and swaying with the violin and bow. Tight clothing can restrict your movements and you may force you to compensate.

If you are playing the violin in a seated position make sure that the seat is not overly soft or you will find it quite difficult to maintain correct posture.

Prior to your violin practice take a drink of water and make sure that you are energized so that you can focus better and easily adapt to the physical demands of playing the violin for a long period of time. Playing the violin when tired can mean that bad habits may be formed and they can be harder to unlearn if they are done long enough.

Strive for violin practice sessions that are of high quality. This means having high levels of sharpness, concentration and energy  and also making your environment being conducive to learning the violin.

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