Practice Basics

Often times it is more important how you practice than what you practice. To become an even average trumpet player requires dedication. The trumpet is not an instrumet you can set down for two weeks then pick it up and play a two hour concert. A good practice routine will contain several common elements:

  • Warmup

    A good warmup will be long enough to get the blood going and have you ready to play with minimal effort. While each player is different, a typical warmup should be between three and five minutes. Warm up times will also vary depending on how fatigued the player is. If your lips are very tired, expect to have a longer warmup than if you are fully rested.

  • Long Tones

    Spending a few minuts a day on long tones will greatly improve lip response and overall sound.

  • Lip Flexibility

    There are many variations. Lip slurs tpyically come to mind. Learning lip vibrato can greatly improve flexibility and increase embouchure confidence.

  • Playing music

    Trumpet players can often get caught up in rigorous lip exercises or become obssessed with high notes. It's important to have a balanced practice approach that inclues plenty of opportunity to simply play music. Choose music that has variety. Try and always spend a few minutes each practice session sight reading as well.

  • Listening

    To become a better trumpet player it is very important to listen to the great players that came before you. Each practice session you should take time to listen to other trumpet players and other musicians as well. Don't think just because someone is playing a saxaphone and you are trying to play the trumpet that there is not something to be learned!!! Inspiration can come from anywhere!