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Is there a minimum # of practise hours for progress?
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Composer
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July 12, 2011 - 11:27 pm
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For example, if I practise 1 hour/day every day of the year forever, I doubt whether progress up to virtuosity is even within the realm of possibility for classical violin.  Perhaps even 2 hours/day is a waste of time for the average student.  I'm skeptical whether your instructor would even be truthful on this matter.  Another interesting question, is how many hours a day does a pro need to MAINTAIN his/her proficiency?

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Robyn.fnq
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July 13, 2011 - 3:41 am
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Hi Composer,

You've raised an interesting question, and one I fear does not have a prescribed answer.  All I've read and watched has led me to believe that progress is a very individual phenomenon, I'm sure we've all seen someone who can just pick up an instrument and play it as if they had all their lives.  For most of us it takes practice and patience.

One thing I've learned from many professionals who've published tutorials, is that practice time is totally different from practice quality.  And the latter is what will bring perfection in the long run.

I've learned that the more I listen to others, then listen to my own playing, the more progress I make.  Fiddlerman is a great example ... I've watched his video tutorials, taking note of his finger placement, bowing technique, posture, etc etc etc, then tried to maintain my own practice to match.  At first it's slow, trying to remember so many little details, but I'm sure all those minor things will become habit in the long run.

Hope you find the answer to your personal requirements, I don't really know yet what mine are, but I'm working on it.

Cheers

Robyn   cheerleader

If you think you can, or you think you can't, you're probably right.

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Oliver
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July 13, 2011 - 8:11 am
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I eventually realized that too much practice (many hours) was counter productive.  I was only reinforcing my frustrations.  Half hour sessions are now the norm for me but I choose my music very carefully.  I might do two separate sessions per day.  It now becomes almost more important for me to accurately identify my weaknesses, then find remedial etudes, etc.
I ALWAYS end a session by playing something I enjoy.

coffee2

When you come to a fork in the road, take it.

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Oliver
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July 13, 2011 - 1:46 pm
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Composer,

Your topic rattled my memory.  I have read about a study which claims that "expertise" in advanced studies ultimately requires 10,000 hours total.
I personally am no where near that.  It just feels that way.

coffee2

http://www.wisdomgroup.com/rep....._practice/

(one of many sites)

When you come to a fork in the road, take it.

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myguitarnow
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July 13, 2011 - 6:08 pm
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It's not really like that. Just focus on your instrument as long as you like playing it and what, where and why you are even doing it...Write your own little song on the violin. That's what will create your own musical style....I think?

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Oliver
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July 13, 2011 - 6:25 pm
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@Barry

Let me know how it comes out when you're finished.

coffee2

When you come to a fork in the road, take it.

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Fiddlerman
Fort Lauderdale
July 13, 2011 - 8:36 pm
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As long as you enjoy what you are doing your doing great.
If you want to see your progress, record yourself regularly, for example the 1st of every month and make it your goal to get better.dancing 

"The richest person is not the one who has the most,
but the one who needs the least."

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Oliver
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July 13, 2011 - 10:32 pm
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My best evidence of improvement is to dig down in the music pile maybe 6-12 months and play my lessons from that earlier time period.  So far, so good.  I particularly like to find passages I have marked up with comments about how hard I once thought it was.

When you come to a fork in the road, take it.

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Composer
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July 14, 2011 - 3:35 am
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I was aware of the 10,000 hours but I'm always wondering how it breaks down in the most efficient manner.  I think its important both for the aspiring professional given the intense competition and for myself the amateur with other commitments.  For example, I've spent entire practice sessions of 4 hours, days on end on just tone production.  Then I'll convince myself that is inefficient and employ a lot of parallelism focusing on specific exercises to improve shifting, vibrato, finger independence, etc within a single session.  And then I convince myself I should just let it all sort itself out by practicing 3 and 4 octave scales relentlessly.  Sure, practice as much as possible, but I don't think the planning is all that obvious or subjective.  Surely,there must be some academic studies. 

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Oliver
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July 14, 2011 - 8:02 am
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In many years of surfing violin forums I have never found any consensus on practice routines or academic conclusions about the subject.

However, I have used some special information to regulate my practice strategy.  The subject can be Googled as "incubation learning" and I think it receives far too little attention because it does work and formal studies have been done.

I would give you a URL but my clipboard is busted as usual.

coffee2

When you come to a fork in the road, take it.

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Pikachu
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July 14, 2011 - 2:32 pm
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I practice for about 20 minutes stretches on technique, then play other music until I get bored or until I reach 45 minutes. After 30 minutes, practicing starts being unfocused and I start using bad posture and bow grip, so bad habits start getting reinforced. Usually I take breaks playing and reading/watching tutorials, then hit the violin again

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Fiddlerman
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July 14, 2011 - 10:17 pm
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Pikachu - It's great that you notice the problem that comes after 30 minutes. Your way of dealing with it is great. Taking the breaks so as not to reinforce the bad habits that come when you are tired.

What they say about quality practice time is completely right. Quality practice is what will move you forward the quickest, not just quantity.

"The richest person is not the one who has the most,
but the one who needs the least."

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suresh
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November 27, 2011 - 1:37 pm
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This is how FM practices:

If music be the food of love, play on;
Give me excess of it ..(William Shakespeare in Twelfth Night)

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Chinny
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November 28, 2011 - 4:13 am
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Yea I just practise whenever I feel like it. At least it means I'm motivated to play the violin out of my own free will which makes it much more enjoyable.

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Fiddlerman
Fort Lauderdale
November 29, 2011 - 9:50 pm
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Self motivation is great Chinny. Sometimes we have enough and sometimes we need help getting more motivated.smile

You're lucky to have that motivation.

"The richest person is not the one who has the most,
but the one who needs the least."

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