Practice Schedule


  • Participant
    Eric Allison on #185036

    This is just for general discussion. How do you fit practice sessions into your work week? Evenings, after work, if home, were my starting point. Is it fair to say that a complete lack of anything productive had a “starting point?”

    After a few months, I managed to alter my work schedule to begin at nine in the morning, rather than eight, and secured at least a half-hour a day. Sometimes that includes tuning but usually I can spend the entire thirty minutes actually playing scales, working on the new piece, and reinforcing repertoire.

    Now evenings, after work, if home, are for simply sitting and playing and noodling and experimenting and playing some more.


    Participant
    Allison Stevick on #185077

    This doesn’t exactly fit with the actual question (I don’t actually work outside the home right now), but here is my experience with trying work out when to practice.

    I’m pretty scattered with my “real” practice at this stage of life. I’ve got young children and I mostly stay home with them, so it’s not like I’m out of the house 8+ hours per day, but I am still very busy and don’t have enough time to devote to regular, uninterrupted practice. What I do is try to practice during nap time (if/when that even happens…) or once my “reinforcements” come home (that would be my husband). 😉
    I do a monthly performance at a local nursing home and play in church once in a while, so when I have one of those events coming up, I keep the harp out where it is easily accessible and try grabbing an extra 5 mins here and there. That actually helps me to learn to play through distractions! Like, little hands grabbing at the harp, climbing on my chair, or just asking a hundred questions a minute… It is so much more stressful than performing that it makes the performing seem easy. 😉 Along with that, I get more strict on carving out chunks of practice, but that sometimes can mean getting only 22 mins at a time while I put on a cartoon to distract my kids. This is only a last resort though, and I can’t let the tv babysit them often enough for it to be a regular practice thing.
    I tell myself that once they are in school I will have more time. Though I’ll very likely be going back to work at that point, so I may be in the same boat I’m in now but with even less time…


    Participant
    Cindy Cripps-Prawak on #189069

    Hi Eric,

    I just joined HarpColumn and I am a relatively new harpist. On the instrument for 6 months and I have a demanding job. I try to get at least 30 minutes in the morning. I tune (getting faster at it) and focus on technical work in the am. One lesson a week and I try to work the pieces in at least three times a week. Sunday afternoon turns into an extended practice session usually with a glass of wine on the side. Doing this regularly seems to keep me on track.


    Participant
    athena16 on #189419

    I am usually exhausted after work and get overwhelmed thinking I face a 30 minute practice session. What I do is aim for 5 -10 minutes per scale/song.
    I find if I do a practice binge on the weekend by Monday it’s less of a struggle because I already feel proficient in the piece so it’s mentally not as draining. it’s more like during the week i’m ‘reinforcing’ what i learnt already rather than starting all new and out at sea.
    Another thing I found is looking at harp as ‘me’ time and letting go of perfectionism. I get frustrated if I feel I have ‘work’ to do or a struggle so I think of Harp as something quite personal and private. like how after school activities were always a mental escape from school with the obvious issue being work is like school… hope this makes sense!


    Participant
    JS Moir on #220869

    I am a college music professor, but not in harp[!] I found (during the summer, when we blessedly have time off) I could get in practice time soon after I woke up, for about .5 hour or so six days a week. During the school year, I catch a practice on all my ‘non-major’ instruments, at different times during the day mostly during my less busy days. But it usually is in the afternoon, before my late p.m. rehearsals, and before I go home. If I have extra energy (and free time) in the evenings, I may practice a second ‘set’ in my studio, but no more than 20-30 minutes each time. I am building up stamina, and want to prevent injury. But my teacher says I am making progress, and I can see it, as well. So, it’s all good.

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