Combination Drills

Just hit on an idea while teaching, this afternoon. For a long time, in my own trumpet practice, I’ve advocated efficiency in the “maintenance” section by focusing on the multiple areas of technique a particular exercise might work on. For example, when playing Clarke #2, you are working on breath support, fluidity of blow while changing notes, diatonic key areas as well as the obvious benefit to the fingers! If you also choose to play each key both slurred and tongued, you are additionally working on articulation and maintaining a consistent embouchure set whether slurring or tonguing. That is 6 or more technical areas covered in one exercise. I encourage my students to take some of this thinking on board, particularly the professionals; a lot of time can be saved in the practice room by realizing that you’ve covered so many more areas, and that can be translated to less time spent and more potential stamina remaining to get through the playing demands of the day. It’s more efficient!

Anyway, with my students today, we worked on combining fragments of different exercises to further refine this concept. The results were most pleasing; a feeling of having worked out more technique in less time and feeling much more “well oiled” than we might usually, when moving on.

This is a concept I’ll now be collating exercises for, in order to put together a book which I can use for my own reference, as well as for my students. I wondered if anybody else might be interested, as I get this together. If so, do you prefer a printed hard-copy book, or are we becoming modern and technological enough that an e-book would suffice? Please comment below, or on the related social media posts, and let me know.

3 thoughts on “Combination Drills

  1. HI Bryan –
    I am old school on this – nothing beats the hard copy….although some free pdf samples or e-chapters of various things are always fun –
    Chris Rogers

  2. Hey Brian, always interested in efficient practice, something I try to keep on top of myself and teach my own students. An ecopy would be great. Would you be looking for feedback?

Leave a Reply

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.