Posted by Kenneth Sloan on April 19, 2002 at 14:49:37:
In Reply to: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: diaphragm placement/bore size? posted by Rick Denney on April 19, 2002 at 10:50:22:
Rick speaks of the relative benefits of first-hand observation and expert testimony.
There are two issues here. First, what is the truth. Second, what story best communicates the ideas that lead to good performance.
The truth about the diaphragm is best left in the hands of an anatomist. Happily, I have one at hand. I can say without fear of contradiction (by competent opposition) that the diaphragm has virtually nothing at all to do with EXhalation. It can *inhibit* exhalation by trying to INhale - but no more.
But...is that truth necessary to the practicing wind player? Not necessarily. When a teacher tries to communicate with a student, the teacher is constrained to use terms that the student already understands - AND - is often constrained to construct explanations which make sense in the mind of the student, EVEN WHEN THEY ARE WRONG.
This is a "short-term vs. long-term" argument. If you want results RIGHT NOW, then you do what you can. If you want the TRUTH...well, that might take longer, and performance may suffer in the short-term.
So, if "support from the diaphragm" makes sense to the student and produces better results immediately, it's not such a bad thing. As long as the student remembers that "When I was a child...when I became an adult I put away childish things."
If "support from the diaphragm" works FOR YOU, and you are a player (and not a teacher of anatomy), then by all means continue to use this concept in your playing.
Useful fictions are, first of all, useful. Only secondarily are they fiction.