The Importance Of Warming Up Before Music Practice
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Warm-up is one of the activities required from musicians for practice and performance.But let us ask ourselves a question concerning this. Is it very important that every musician warms up before they fully go into their practice sessions?
The answer to this is YES. The preparatory activity is necessary because playing music is just like playing sports and is also a physically demanding task.
Specifically, warm-up is very important in any physically demanding activities. As we all know, athletes do warm-ups before they start the race or training. This is to prepare their body for the energy conversion activities they are about to subject their body to.
In the same sense, every musician should warm up as well before singing or playing a piece of music. Because musicians are also engaging in complex muscles-controlled actions to make music from their instrument.
The instrument can be voice, brass, strings, woodwinds, or percussion. Whatever the instrument is, producing music from them involves specific muscle and other parts of the body.
What Is Warming Up?
Warming up is basically the pre-activity before the main activities in music practice and performance. It primarily prepares the body to switch from rest to activities.
Furthermore, warming up is a sequential and progressive activity that musicians employ to prepare their functional muscles and body for the main activities.
In addition, warming up is absolutely the preparation phase the musician passes through to prepare his or her body for the main practice.
Warming up can be a group of exercises like running a scale on different keys or playing arpeggios on a piano or other instrument. As well as stretching some parts of the body like the hand or wrist to develop movement flexibility.
Warming up is very important in any engagement that relates to physical activity. Because it helps the performers to prepare for the demands of their selected physical activities.
And playing any of the musical instruments and singing are not excluded from the list of these physical activities or engagement.
Why You Should Warm Up Before Music Practice
You should warm-up before practice because it will allow your body to get ready physically and mentally. This little gesture before the main practice session can prevent you from injury.
In addition, warm-up can also help in developing those functional muscles for music performance and build your long-term strength along the line. Also, the brief activities can improve your muscle memory as well as your focus.
It is also a known phenomenon that warming up before music performance will release tension in your muscles. For instrumentalists, the warm-up will release the tension in their face, hands and fingers, and vocal muscles for singers.
In this article, we will look into the importance of warming up before engaging in the real practice session as a musician. So, in the following session, we will list and discuss some of the important reasons you should warm up before your practice session.
Warming Up Prevents Unnecessary Injury
Warming up is an activity for musicians to stretch their muscles and prepare their bodies for the task ahead. Definitely, you would not run a marathon race physically without stretching your body first.
So warming up can be related in music to the same way athletes prepare their body for the race or training in sport.
The warming up is necessary because musicians use a lot of muscles to make musical sounds. The muscle may be the one in the hands, vocal cords, face, or whole body. Whenever we warm up, we prepare those muscles and other soft tissue for the main activity without straining or exhausting ourselves.
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Warming up supports us to attain the climax of physical performance and reduce the chance of getting injured at the same time. Going straight into practice without proper warming up can result in some minor injury that can develop into a major one later.
Moreover, warming up makes all the functional muscles for music performance more adaptable and definitely reduces injury. Certainly, you are at the risk of injury and strain if you do not warm up properly. Because you will practice by forcing cold muscles and joints to work.
Hence, to avoid unnecessary injury and strain, we should warm up before we start the practice. This should be included in our practice and performance routine.
Warm-up It Improves Overall Strength
Warming up is a special activity in music practice that will train your muscles and body for better performance. The right warm-up will actually improve your overall strength and make you become a better player or singer.
As we all know, a consistent workout at the gym helps us work out our physical goals. In the same sense, a regular and right warm-up will make a difference in your overall playing or singing with time.
The secret behind this improvement and development is very simple. And it’s because you are engaging in techniques of playing or singing in a stress-free way while you are warming up.
Warming Up Build Muscle Memory
Muscle memory is one of the most essential aspects of mastering any instrument. But you have to build it in the right way with the right techniques. And this is possible with proper warm-up exercises.
During the warm-up process, you may repeat certain exercises several times before you start another one. As you are moving your fingers in a particular pattern several times in connection with what you want to play or sing, you are developing your muscle memory at the same time.
As a result of this repetitive action like running scale up and down during the warming up, some part of your playing or singing will become autonomous.
This will make your muscle connected to that activity and make it easy to repeat during actual performance without involving the brain at all.
Moreover, when you begin practice without a proper warm-up, the warming up will take place while you are practicing. During this period, your muscle will start to come back to life from its resting position.
That means they will not have full engagement while you are practicing until they are ready along the line. As a result, you will prolong the time it takes to build muscle memory. So, warming up is vital in building muscle memory for musicians.
Warm-up Improves Focus And Concentration
Concentration is simply the mental input you apply to anything you are working on or whatever learning at the present time. And focus is the key to productivity that enables you to concentrate properly.
Obviously, a high degree or good level of focus and concentration is very essential for good practice sessions and music development.
Because it makes you totally embrace the piece and give the practice attention it requires. And without a doubt, you can accomplish this with a series of short warm-up exercises.
Running through a series of warm-up exercises prepares you physically and mentally for a good practice session. Also, it enhances your readiness and allows you to concentrate more on the repertoire you are about to practice.
Supposing you just want to practice drilling in a specific key or examine the challenging session in a piece. Beginning the session with a proper warm-up in that direction will enhance your overall concentration and desired result.
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Also, you may be thinking about rushing to learn a new repertoire or technical feature of a piece, you still need to warm up. Because without a proper warm-up, you might fall behind. The reason is that your focus may not be there totally for you to proceed faster as you aim.
So, warm up to get ready for the task ahead instead of wasting your time and energy to consume the new information without being mentally ready to do so. Also, rather than disturbing the new message from getting into your system due to lack of concentration, warm up to get prepared.
Warming up is a practical way to get yourself ready for proper assimilation of new information in music. Actually, using warm-up as an introduction phase to adequately prepare your brain ready for the new task ahead is beneficial to music practice.
The more effectively your brain prepares for new information, the better your concentration to achieve the desired result.
Importance Of Warming Up Before Music Practice in Summary
The reason every musician should warm up before practice spans across effective practice sessions and technique development. Because a well-structured routine for the warm-up will help you to utilize the fundamentals of playing or singing.
For instance, warming up on a piano with scales and arpeggios can make a difference in your overall playing. This piano technique will improve your skill, build your muscle memory and strengthen your fingers as well.
So, the need to warm up before any music practice session cannot be underestimated. And the warm-up session is not a waste of time as many musicians insinuated. Because it is beneficial to music practice and performance in general.
Warming up allows you to release the tension in your body as well as your face, hand and wrist muscles. Warming up is important as a result of connecting your mind and body to your task and giving you an edge to progress in your musicianship.
Moreover, the warm-up can help you develop your singing or playing fluency to a great extent. And also make a significant contribution to your overall musicianship in performance.
Taking your time to warm up before the real practice can really be of significance to your entire practice session. Also, it can amount to how much you achieve in every practice.
Just ensure you have the right warm-up routine you are using. Every warm-up activity should target challenges you have with the instrument or your voice in order not to warm up for fun.
Don’t use warm-up exercises without knowing what you will achieve with it. Also, stick to any warm-up techniques you find particularly beneficial to your practice and development.
Normally, the best warm-ups and the main activities are very much alike but at a lower intensity. All the same, the warm-up should be done for 10 to 15 minutes.
This will make you nimble and focused without fatigue from the excess warm-up. Because if you warm up excessively, it can result in exhaustion during the main practice or performance session.
Finally, let us know in the comments session below if you find this article informative and educative. Thanks
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