Looking for practice plans/logs to give me an idea on how to construct my own

April 6, 2019, 10:28 AM · I'm afraid I might be loading in everything plus the kitchen sink.

If anyone had a practice plan you'd care to share, I would appreciate it. Thanks.

Doesn't matter if advanced, intermediate, or beginner. Just trying to get an idea.

Replies (7)

Edited: April 6, 2019, 11:41 AM · A lot of students divide their time into four segments -- scales, studies, lyrical repertoire or solo Bach, and fast rep (concerto movements). That seems like a pretty good starting point.

On another thread, though, it seemed that you were dividing your time into two-minute increments.

And the problem with having a segment like "scales" is that "scales" is a pretty broad task! A two-minute task might be "A-major scale, two octaves, quarter notes at 120 bpm, three times, each time getting the string changes just a little cleaner."

Something I have learned by having endless meetings at work is that a detailed agenda not only makes your meeting more efficient, but it makes the work of preparing minutes (what you are calling a log) much much easier.

April 6, 2019, 2:03 PM · I divvy up my scales into four parts—regular ol' scales, arpeggios, double stops, and target practise. I work on one a day for an hour or so and rotate each day.

"Target practise" is basically double stops on one string, if it wasn't clear.

The rest of my practise follows the usual formula.

April 8, 2019, 8:11 AM · Violinmasterclass.com has some sample practice plans under their "Practice Schedules" tab. Here is the link to the website: https://www.violinmasterclass.com/p/practice-schedule
I don't personally plan my practice out in this much detail, but it might work for you.
April 8, 2019, 9:12 AM · I'm with Tim. While I admire the "dividing by four" routine as valuable for serious students (especially when each fourth is something on the order of 45 minutes), my ratio varies a lot. Generally I work on studies more when I'm tired -- when I am tired I am able to force myself to do menial things -- but when I am alert I prefer to work on repertoire.
Edited: April 8, 2019, 10:57 AM · My practice structure developed with my teacher is pretty simple (beginning returnee). Roughly 25% of the time is on scales and technique. 60% spent on exercises and pieces from the book, remaining time spent on pieces I enjoy playing that I've selected with his approval (I enjoy them, they stretch me but are not impossible). I normally practice 1 hour daily, sometimes longer, rarely shorter but that does happen.
Edited: April 8, 2019, 10:18 AM · Intermediate re-starter:

My practice time is divided into: warm up (open strings, scales, Schradieck 1, segue into some double stops and Sevcik), then shifting exercises (I'm doing Yost at the moment, a different positional pattern for each string - so four different shifts), then Schradieck (3rd, 4th and 5th position - one page from each), then repertoire (however long I can spend on it - at least as long as the fundamentals/tech work).

I practice in 30 minute blocks as that is the best for me, and I have been trying to complete three thirty minute blocks on weeknights (in my "breaks" I'll fold laundry, prep dinner, eat dinner, etc.). If I am short on time, or feel like I'm going through the motions vs being efficient/attentive with the tech work, I'll cut the Schradieck in half to maximize rep time. If I have more time, I'll mix the pattern up and incorporate repertoire in say, the second block, then complete Schradieck in the third block, and go back to rep in the fourth block, then if intonation (for example) is not quite right I'll do scales in the key I'm struggling with, then return to repertoire. If I have unlimited time on a weekend to practice, and the energy for it, I'd easily spend 4hrs practicing in eight half hour blocks. I WISH I could practice 3hrs a day, that would be amazing - have too many other pots on the stove to do that at the moment.

I keep a practice log that only records what I worked on for that 30 min block, and will sometimes note areas to focus on in the next practice session. If I'm working a piece up to tempo, I'll note the bpm that I practiced with and then flip to the next day's page to mark where I should start the metronome at. I like to start each day fresh (without reviewing the previous days' work too much) otherwise I get overwhelmed with the sheer amount of material that I cover in a practice session.

Usually once a week I practice whatever I want - review old pieces to keep them fresh, noodle with rep that is simple but fun to play (will never be brought to lesson), scales and arpeggios, stuff like that.

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