Seven (7) Tips To Maximize Your Practice Session

It is important not just to practice, but to practice well. You can practice daily and still make very slow progress if you are not practising well. To make the most progress with the least effort, your individual practice time should include the following seven tips.

1. Set Your Practice Environment

Creating the perfect environment to practice your art is important if you want your talent to truly flourish. This means in order to practice well it is very important to find the most suitable environment for it. While soundproofing your home plays a role in the acoustic quality of your practice space, environmental conditions can as well.

Find environment that works for you. When you are practising music if you know someone else is listening then it affects your practice causing anxiety and distraction. You cannot practice well. This is termed as ‘Evaluation Apprehension’ by psychologists. It can cause great trouble.

The right environment for practicing music is the one that causes no distraction, does not cause disturbance to others and where you are not interrupted.

2. Have a Focused Objective

Go into the practice session with an end goal in mind and focus on what you want to achieve at the end of the session. Stay focused on what you want to accomplish right now, today, and on how that will help you get where you want to be. If you're not sure what you need to focus on, ask your teacher for a few concrete goals to work toward before the next lesson; and write them down so that you can refer to them during your practice sessions.

By having a much focused objective or a goal for each practice session before you start playing, you will find you progress much more quickly and effectively and you will probably accomplish a whole lot more in a short amount of time.

3. Have All Your Requires Materials Ready

Ensure you have everything you need for the practice at arm’s reach ahead of time in order to eliminate distractions or interruptions during your practice time.

4. Warm-Up Thoroughly

Playing musical instruments and singing are physical activities, and warming up is just as important to the musician as it is to the athlete. This is necessary for a more fluid practice so you will not have to practice longer because you will be warming up while you practising. For example, if you hope to do solo or improve work, it is useful to practice scales. If you need to improve your range, find an exercise that helps you play high or low notes.

Warm-ups may feel like a waste of time, but you can turn them into some of the most productive minutes of your practice. A pretty common scenario is to start with scales as a warm-up, to loosen up your muscles and get your brain thinking about the technique.

5. Practice Smarter, Not Longer

Your goal should be to practice smarter and not longer. Most people think of music practice in terms of content like notes, scales, tunes and so on. However, it is very important to be in the right frame of mind to practice music because the result of practice is more dependent on our state of mind. We can accomplish a lot in a short time if our mind is ready and our concentration is total. Quality prevails over quantity when it comes to practising music.

There are endless ways to practice smarter, and it all depends on what works best for you! Focus on creating a goal that you can accomplish in one sitting and don’t pay attention to the clock as you begin to work on it. Whatever skill you would like to develop, find a useful way to practice it. If you do not have a teacher, director, or band mates who can make suggestions, scour the Internet or consult "teach yourself to play" books for ideas.

6. Have a Good Attitude

This plays a huge role in maximizing your practice session. Learning the music incorrectly is a step backwards; it actually becomes more difficult to do it correctly than if you had not practiced the piece at all. For example, when playing through the music, do not simply trip over or stutter through the hard parts and go on. This approach also creates bad habits, making it nearly impossible for you to play the piece without stopping or stuttering at those spots.

It takes a lot of time and patience to become a great musician, and we believe that with a good attitude, you can do it!

7. Record Yourself

Recording yourself is a great practice technique and can save you a lot of time in the long run. Recording yourself so that you can get a chance to sit back and listen to yourself, rather than trying to listening and playing at the same time. This makes it easier for you to evaluate how well you are doing and what progress you have make on the difficult stuff during your practice session. 

Recording yourself during your practice sessions will allow you to observe your error yourself before a performance! And perhaps spot some things you may want to consider doing differently that you miss in the moment of practising. However, with video recording, you may notice tension that you were unaware of and this will help you fine-tune your stage presence as well as capture how you sound.

If you have any other suggestions that can help to maximize  music practice, let us know in the comments section.

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