April 2015

The Different Paths of John

April 26, 2015 20:04

Which is the correct way?
There are different paths, so does that mean there are no wrongs? Whatever works for you? So and so does it this way, and he plays well; therefore should I do it in the same way? My teacher says to do it this way, should I not question it?

---The GuRu and the Four Auto Mechanics---

John went to see his teacher, Guru, on the mountain top. GuRu said to John, “I want you to take four different paths here next week, one path for each day. This way you will learn.”
John received his orders, but he first had to put new tires on his truck. So that day he took his truck in to get the tires replaced.
They had a different auto mechanic for each tire: Ipac, Vise, Stan and Torq.

Ipac used an impact wrench to tighten the nuts. The impact wrench over tightens, so therefore the tire will never come off.

Stan used a standard ratchet to tighten the nuts. He guesses from experience on how tight the bolts should be.

Vise gets out a pair of vise-grips and tightens the nuts as much as he can.

Torq puts the nuts on first with an impact wrench, and then torques the bolts on with a torque wrench.

John is very happy with the service; he thanks the mechanics personally for their great workmanship and then goes on his trip.

On the first day John is happy to be learning new things and experiences. Shortly into the trip he notices a tire rolling ahead of him, and loses control of his car and almost hits a tree. John prays and thanks GOD for sparing his life, but sees that there is damage to the truck. John comes to notice that the tire was fine, but the nuts were missing .He walked down the path and found the missing nuts, and puts the tire back on the vehicle and continues his path. John thinks back, and remembers that Vise put the tire on. John isn’t happy with Vise.

On the second day John is happy to start his second path. Shortly into the trip John hears some noises and has trouble steering. John pulls into a gas station and they tell him he is missing nuts on his front tire and this caused the rim to be warped. After some time and cost they repair the tire and John continues on his journey. John remembers that Stan put that tire on. John isn’t happy with Stan.

On the third day John is happy to start his third path. But shortly into the trip John hears a loud noise. He pulls the truck over and noticed one of the tires is blown. No problem, John can fix that. When John tries to take the nuts off the tire, he is unable to do it. They are on too tight, so he puts all his force into it. The tool he is working with breaks and John smashes is hand. John calls for a tow truck and the truck operator loosens the bolts and replaces the tire. John also had to go to the hospital to get aid for is hand, and then he finally continues on his path. John thinks back and remembers that Ipac installed the tire, John isn’t happy at all with Ipac.

On the fourth day John is nervous to start the fourth path. Surprisingly nothing happens and he finished on time. John is happy with Torq, because his tire repair worked without fail.

After the trip John goes back to the garage and talks to the manager. He asks the manger why the bolts for the tires gave him a hard time. The manager says that the mechanics use different paths to achieve the same goals, and the basic principle is accomplished. The tires are on and they work fine. “Really” says John. John hands him the bill for the damages to the truck, time lost, towing and garage expenses, and medical expenses.

The manager is very unhappy, and fires the 3 mechanics, but keeps Torq on because he was the only one that learned from his mistakes.

John now goes to see his teacher, GuRu, on the mountain top. GuRu says to John “What have you learned.” John says” there are many paths, but only a few that don’t cost you time, injury and wasted money.”

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Rules of Preventing Injury

April 23, 2015 22:44

The main reason to have good technique is to prevent injury, or it should be the main reason. Don't worry too much about projection unless you own a 50 thousand + dollar violin and playing in a grand hall.
Injury can happen at any stage, but poor technique can start showing signs of injury(pain) around the 4 year mark of playing. The GREAT thing that comes from selecting techniques that are injury prevention oriented, is that they will increase speed, accuracy and ease of play. Basically you will learn things quicker with less effort.

Signs or rules of injury preventing techniques (IPT):

1)prevents excessive finger and hand movements
2)prevents 'constant' tension
3)minimizes hand muscle movements
4)increases flexibility and dexterity
5)prevents 'constant' use of shoulder, arm and hand muscles
6)puts the bodies health first, not the instrument's, or speed, accuracy and projection dogmas first
7)doesn't restrict blood flow
8)follows basic rules of posture: ears, shoulders, hips and ankles need to be aligned
9)prevents fingers from pressing to hard or coming down to hard (thumping or banging noise is heard).

---List of techniques: the Good, the a bad and the ugly:

-Left wrist bent forward(pizza pan hand): breaks rules 7,4. Considered poor technique.
-Left wrist bent away when playing on A or E string: breaks rules 7, 5 also an indication that violin is to large or holding the violin to far to the left.
-Left wrist straight when playing on A or E string: uses rules 7,5,4.
-Index finger facing you or facing down fingerboard when used on E string: uses rules 1,3
-Index finger at an angle when used on E string: breaks rules 1,3,7. considered poor technique.
-Index finger is away from violin's neck and thumb supports violin: breaks rules 2,5 -thumb and shoulder muscles in constant use.
-Fingers to high from fingerboard: breaks rules 1,7 (causes inflammation),9
-Fingers low (1/4 -1/2 inch) with a light touch will prevent many injuries.
-Elbow staying in one spot under violin and not swinging forward to guide fingers to lower strings: breaks rules 1,3

That's a few example of the basic techniques to give an idea to what to look for when choosing healthy techniques that will make playing the violin more enj

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Curing the memory of Stage Fright

April 18, 2015 17:12

Curing the memory of Stage Fright

------"Visualization. Play through your performance in your head, imagining yourself exactly in the situation--'you should feel nervous if you are doing this'--and playing at your best level. Do this more than once if you can."------

This is a major anxiety issue, even if the thought of playing in public makes you nervous. But the goal isn't to play well when you are nervous, the goal is to entertain.

Being nervous 'is curable'
'is curable'
'is curable'
But you need to change the memory from a negative (cortisol) to a positive(dopamine or testosterone), and once you've changed that memory, IT IS CHANGE FOR GOOD.
and once you've changed that memory, IT IS CHANGE FOR GOOD
and once you've changed that memory, IT IS CHANGE FOR GOOD
Got it!!

Thoughts and actions to change memory:

-You are not there to play perfectly, you are there to entertain. Think 'I entertaining'
-think, "look at me, I play amazing"
-accept mistakes
-think, "I am going to make this many mistakes, and that is OK."
-Picture yourself playing, while you are practicing have a "look at me" entertaining attitude.
-exercise regularly
-Fresh Sage leaf: it lowers cortisol.
-no heavy/simple carbs on the day of show
-select an attractive person in the audience and 'show off' for them.
-PRACTICE, the above suggestions

Actions that can cause nervousness:
-high expectations
-self doubt
-not practicing enough
-too much coffee or simple carbs
-shy, "don't look at me" attitude.
-negative thoughts when practicing.

Remember, you only have to play once without being nervous, and then you will never be nervous again, you had a breakthrough.


New York City Quote:

"I used to have really bad social anxiety. I'd be so afraid of saying something awkward and uninteresting, I'd stand on the perimeter of conversations and not say a thing. Which ironically came across as awkward and uninteresting."

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More entries: March 2015

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