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Warming Up

Frederick Burton (5465) · [archive]
Style: Theory/Reference · Level: Beginner · Tempo: 120
Pages: 1 2 3 4 5 6 7

In a nutshell, warming up is essential. Bottom line! Warming up can be helpful prior to an extensive practice session, in between sessions, after taking a break, and after coming off of a period time where you haven't played. Warming up phsically and mentally wakes up the body and mind and alerts it that you're about to embark on some type of adventure, so to speak, so get ready. Believe it or not, everyone and everything warms up or has some sort of warming up period. Athletes warm up, vocalist are notorious for warming up, i'm sure you heard of the expression, "warming up to him/her." Tube amps warm up, cars during the winter months require "warming up", and if I offend anyone I apologize but fore play is a form of warming up, so why shouldn't you! To insure a safeguard from injuries then it is my advice, it is good advice to WARM UP!. Let's begin with some warm ups that require no playing! Hand stretches. With your left hand open and extended take your right hand and grabbing the fingers of your left hand, SLOWLY and CAREFULLY push back on your left hand. This stretches the muscles of the forearem. Hold for a few seconds and release. Then, grabbing the fingers again, of the left hand, and push downward. This stretches the opposite side of the forearm muscles. DON"T JERK or bounce this stretch. Switch hands and repeat, holding for only a few seconds. Another hand stretching exercise is to push each of your fingers against your thumb, one at a time, push down with a little force, slowly, and change fingers every few seconds. Other stretches can include: Forward bends. This can alleviate stress to the back and hamstring muscles. Back bends are helpful as well. Side bends can stretch the trunk, shoulders, back of legs, calves. I include some of these stretches for my students and share them with you. They are helpful and really get the blood flowing. A couple of years ago a friend suggested I look into yoga because at that time I was complaining of shoulder tension and aches and pains which goes with the territory of sitting in one position for hours at a time. I've been practicing yoga for three years now and it has been a blessing in disguise. I suggest to everyone into music to either grab a couple of books on yoga for beginners or take some yoga classes and get into it. The benefits are limitless. A hand exercise that can be helpful is to make a fist, very tight, then open your hand and extend fully, repeat as often as you can for as long as you can. Another exercise is to place all four fingers on the low (e) string on adjacent frets. Try lifting any two fingers up while keeping the other two on the fretboard. Not as easy as it sounds.