Posted by Mark Heter on June 26, 2003 at 09:40:31:
In Reply to: Re: Re: confidence in high register posted by dave on June 25, 2003 at 23:36:01:
The bike rides can't hurt - I suggest you wear a helmet.
The answer to your question is YES. Also, be patient about this. You're in the process of teaching your body to do something that is, well, unnatural. When you have cracked the diaphragm breath support thing, you may actually experience a little bit of an epiphany - several of my students did. I blame your band director, the usual cuplrit for your current situation.
Instead of starting kids out with breathing, they are started out with fingerings.
Instead of starting kids out learning to read in time, along with the other rudiments of music, they taught to memorize their "parts", so the band can have another trophy in the case.
Instead of learning how to build a solid foundation of an embouchure/breath support, to hit notes in upper register of the horn, they taught to "smile", which is basically a time bomb which explodes later on when the kids gets serious about MAKING MUSIC.
I always believed that the greatest reward in teaching music was in bestowing the skills of musicmaking on young people so they would have that for the rest of their lives. Maybe not in the Philharmonic, but in the town band, community orchestra, the church group, or with friends as a social activity. They way things are going, perfectly good instruments end up in attics rotting away - once you get out of college there aren't many places for adults to play halftime shows.
The bike's not a bad idea, especially if you think of tuba playing as "aerobic" activity as opposed to "anaerobic" activity - you know, like weightlifting. The only anaerobic activity you should theoretically engage in is schlepping the horn to the gig....