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Fiddlerman has a poll on this topic, I'm not going to post yet because I just got my violin.
I know it is important to practice everyday, sometimes I felt exhausted after work. Summer is busy for us because my daughter has swimming lessons in the evening so we don't get home until after 8pm. This year is a little better because we split the sessions with a friend's daughter so she only swims on MWF, but she has violin lessons on Tuesdays:)
I got a Chinese instrument a month ago and hoping I could start playing again. It is tough because I don't have any music to practice with and when I have questions no body could answer me. Any way, a friend of my in Taiwan is learning to play the same instrument now, so may be she could help me get some music and answer my questions. With this instrument, I practice only when I felt the itch
With violin, I will have to help my daughter practice so I will be learning with her from her teacher and I'm learning from the Fiddlerman, so I think I probably keep it up better and practice more often, like everyday.
I know it sounds kinda boring but just playing long slow notes, concentrating on bow placement and even sounding notes. Also long notes with string changes. Then long slow scales, concentrating on bow placement and finger placement. There are some very simple songs you can print from this site like "Lightly Row" "Jingle Bells" and others. I don't think it is on this site but, "Mary Had A Little Lamb" is very easy. I know they are kids tunes, but the cool thing is you know how they go, rhythm, notes. You know when it is not right, without looking at the sheet music. Again, concentrate on clean long slow notes. You are building muscle memory. If you hold the bow the correct way and begin slowly with babysteps, just a little at a time, you will have a foundation on which you can add the skills you will acquire as you advance. Every one learns this way.
I can add something funny about slow.
I once read a discussion about playing fast and slow and the idea was given that if there is a problem playing a piece fast, then try playing it slow. Many of the "fast" boo-boos will also show up in the slow version where they can be isolated and dealt with.
I thought that was cute but over-simplified for me until I tried it on a few occasions. Very revealing at times ( and almost embarrassing!)
When you come to a fork in the road, take it.
Wow. you are learning it for your daughter?
What a great mom.
My mom never did that even though she wanted me to learn and the main reason she wanted me to learn how to play violin was that she thought people who play violin look cool but she couldn't play. Even before she got married, she thought if she gets a kid, violin is a must thing to teach.
However. You know. Everybody know.
When they were young they probably felt this way at least once.
I wish I could do what I want to do.
I think letting chidren.. be exposed to many different thing(?) is important, but forcing them to do something they don't want to do is bad.
Well. Not that I think you are doing something bad;;; but just some words from my memory.
Even though my mom tried I forgot everything I learned for like 6-7 years now. Learning is important but keeping what I know is more important.
I wish I practiced continuously.
Ah. The answer to your question.. hm.
I think How often or how much doesn't mean anything.
You need to practice until you get what you want.
How fast people learn is all different.
I can't say practice every day because you might learn faster than other people.
But not to forget what you learned you should try to practice as often as you can. At least for a minute to go over what you did yesterday? I guess that's enough.
Ah. one thing is.. I don't know if it's going to help you much, but when I learned violin long time ago, my teacher tought me to practice with my wrist when I'm not with my violin.
Put fingers on wrist thinking that my wrist is violin.
It's helpful when you are trying to memorize the note.
If you need to check the sound it's different story, but with this method I could practiced even when I was in the class. 🙂
I try to practice everyday at least 30 minutes. When I have more time I will practive for hours. I really don't consider it as practice because I really enjoy playing the violin. I am still a beginner but I find that when I play time really doesn't matter. I feel like I am in a different zone.
I notice the same thing, time flies. I say to myself, "I will practice for a half hour or 45 mins. before I know it I have taken two breaks to stretch and two and a half hours have gone by. Not a lot of improvement in my playing, but some and that makes me happy!
I work 12 to 14 hours a day. I carry a fiddle with me on the road. Sometimes I find an hour to play and other times no time at all. But no matter what I keep improving because I keep practicing when ever I have a chance. I may not be improving as fast as some others but I am improving . Just keep your fiddle handy and make your practice time count concentrate on your intonation and bowing.
@Brielle:Wow. you are learning it for your daughter?
Yes, and no:) I am trying to help her with her practice, she is only 5.5 years old. But since I go to the lessons with her and help her, so I thought I might just as well learn it. I have learned to play different instruments before, three of them are Chinese instruments, a little guitar, harmonica, organ, carrilon, but never good at any of them. So now I have the chance to learn an instrument, I am trying to learn it and hopefully I could be better at it than the all other instruments i had learned to play.
As David suggested, I tried lightly row today, and guessed what? It's a children's song about hard working bees that I know as a child:). What is the origin of this piece? I tried to play it on all four strings:)
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