Stretching for Musicians (The best way to breathe!)
As a lifetime student of both kinesiology and the trombone, I've found daily stretching to be a powerful tool to ones musical development. Below are a few stretches I've found to be useful as a performer, and as a teacher. There is simply no better exercise to develop your breathing. The body knows what to do, you just need to get your body working more efficiently.
Sulliman Stretch Muscle
Here is a very basic description of what happens when we stretch a muscle. The shortest fibers always get stretched first. We need to stretch long enough to feel release in the shorter fibers before we will even feel a stretch in the longer fibers. The longer you stretch a muscle, the more fibers you actually stretch. This is a basic reason why yoga feels really good to people who do yoga (regularly). The more you stretch, the more you stretch!
Stretching With Rope
Every musician (everyone else too!) should have a piece of rope to help with stretches. It's a great way to maximize your productivity during a microbreak and keep your body loose. Remember that back pain can be caused by an imbalance of muscle length in the legs and hips!
Stretch: Upper and Lower Body
This is a great way to stretch both the upper body and the lower body. I often go back and forth between the two in this stretch. Enjoy!
Relax Your Shoulders!
Here is a great tip for large ensemble directors. Make sure your
ensemble members relax their shoulders periodically. It will do wonders
for their breathing, posture, focus, and sound.
Large Ensemble Neck Stretch
Here is another great tip for large ensemble directors. Make sure your
ensemble members stretch their necks periodically. It will do wonders
for their breathing, posture, focus, and sound. Try adding this in to a
Most musicians overuse their fingers and grip. Here is a great way to
stretch and compensate for overuse and tension in these areas.
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New content is added regularly. Be sure to check the site for future stretching tips