Page 4 of 4 FirstFirst 1234
Results 76 to 86 of 86

Thread: Practicing what is hard in pursuit of effortlessness

  1. #76

    Default Re: Practicing what is hard in pursuit of effortlessness

    Quote Originally Posted by JonZ View Post
    But whenever researchers test it, they find the people who jumped from item to item, and struggled with recalling, retained the memory ...
    That's great to hear

  2. #77

    Default Re: Practicing what is hard in pursuit of effortlessness

    Jim,

    Here is the article on the topic of blocked v. random schedules.
    https://bulletproofmusician.com/why-...ear-overnight/
    Object to this post? Find out how to ignore me here!

  3. The following members say thank you to JonZ for this post:


  4. #78

    Default Re: Practicing what is hard in pursuit of effortlessness

    Quote Originally Posted by Jim Bevan View Post
    I mean, it's like doing push-ups: Do as many as you possibly can in a row, and the last one or two will be the ones that trigger your body to build up the necessary musculature to do more in the future. Doing the same amount, one at a time throughout the day, won't yield the same results.

    I suppose that we're talking about two different things here: learning something in your head, and improving physical skill. Both are part of making progress on the mandolin, but the necessary routines for progress are quite different.
    It is the opposite of doing push-ups. With pushups, it is optimal to stop when you fail. With a skill, it is optimal to stop when you succeed (and then come back).
    Object to this post? Find out how to ignore me here!

  5. #79
    Mandolin Friendly Mark Gunter's Avatar
    Join Date
    Apr 2014
    Location
    Near Abilene, Texas
    Posts
    2,276

    Default Re: Practicing what is hard in pursuit of effortlessness

    Quote Originally Posted by JonZ View Post
    Here is the article on the topic of blocked v. random schedules.
    https://bulletproofmusician.com/why-...ear-overnight/
    Good article. Her conclusion ~
    The permutations are endless and the exact division of time is not important. What is crucial is that you are keeping your brain engaged by varying the material. More engagement means you will be less bored, more goal-oriented (you have to be if you only have 3 minutes to accomplish something), and substantially more productive. Most importantly, when you return to the practice room the next day, you can start from where you left off. This type of practice sticks.
    I wonder if it would be safe to simply say, "boring practice is not the best practice; could be wasted time."

    She talks about FMRI's there, but that aspect baffles me, I don't know much about those kinds of things. Increased brain activity on switching tasks, etc. over doing repetitions of a task is no big surprise, but I'm not sure how that works to "cement" skills? I think maybe it works by eliminating boredom. If your practice routine is boring to you I'd think you'd be less likely to continue doing it, and less likely to approach it with a positive, pliable mind.

    I know nothing about the field of brain studies, or how to interpret FMRI's, etc. but I've read that repetition of a particular task results in myelination of neural pathways: http://danielcoyle.com/myelin/

    Not sure if the brain tissue activity of myelination would show up on a FMRI? What I'm thinking of here is the aspect mentioned in OP, "effortlessness." Like doing a thing on autopilot; performing a task flawlessly without placing a lot of focus on it. I wonder if that type of activity would result in a lower FMRI reading.

    All this stuff is way over my head, but I think the significance of the data Ms. Carter is writing about is that your brain needs to be engaged in a positive, pliable way - and your practice should be challenging. She's knocking boring repetition. The key seems to me to be "boring vs. interesting/engaging" - and I bet it would apply to everything about the way we practice, not just to "repetition".
    Technique, theory and fun, fun, fun. I love playing, studying and sharing MUSIC.
    "Life is short. Play hard." - AlanN
    ------------------------
    HEY! The Cafe has Social Groups, check 'em out. I'm in these groups:
    Newbies Social Group | The Song-A-Week Social
    The Woodshed Study Group | Collings Mandolins | MandoCymru
    - Advice For Mandolin Beginners
    - YouTube Stuff

  6. The following members say thank you to Mark Gunter for this post:

    FredK 

  7. #80

    Default Re: Practicing what is hard in pursuit of effortlessness

    There is a colorful history of musicians making claims based on “neurology”. I think it is more useful to look at tests of various methodologies to see the results they actually produce.

    You want to be continually challenged, but not frustrated.

    Anecdotally, it seems to me that curious people make the fastest progress, rather than people who can crank out perfect repetitions. Folks who say, “I did that. What else can I do?” But I am more familiar with improvisers, who need to be nimble within any context.
    Object to this post? Find out how to ignore me here!

  8. #81
    Registered User Jim Bevan's Avatar
    Join Date
    Feb 2010
    Location
    Dubai, UAE
    Posts
    421

    Default Re: Practicing what is hard in pursuit of effortlessness

    I read the article (interesting), I'm not finished reading the comments yet (more interesting), but what occurs to me is that there's no mention of allowing a skill to deteriorate. (If I missed it, please point it out to me – I read it rather quickly 'cuz hey, I'm trying to get some practising done here!)

    I do disagree with her application of the truism "We are hardwired to pay attention to change, not repetition." When I practise a difficult passage over and over, it is precisely the change in my ability that I'm paying attention to. The notes, the phrases are being repeated, but not how well I'm playing them. There's a lot of change going on, and it's holding my attention.

    I also tend to disagree with the baseball analogy: the ability of a batter to respond to random pitches is half the challenge – I don't see the correlation with music-making (unless one is practising improvisation, in which case, playing with others is better than practising alone, which I think most of us here already know.)

    Edit: Ah, you mentioned improvisation! I was writing...

  9. #82
    Registered User Tom Wright's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jun 2010
    Location
    Rockville, MD
    Posts
    1,418
    Blog Entries
    7

    Default Re: Practicing what is hard in pursuit of effortlessness

    The paradox is that we have to pay exquisite attention to things we hope to eventually be able to ignore. This is how we get there.

    We are not installing data, or an application, we are training the body (muscles and brain). This requires always going back to the hard stuff to keep it in shape, because it will slip. Katerina Lichtenberg says her tremolo will suffer with disuse. Some boredom is inescapable. (It's not that interesting for an elite athlete to do their drills, either.) But some unconscious part of your brain has to pay attention, or you can't play those notes, so your apparent boredom might not actually be such.
    Blog--Miniature Orchestra
    Sound Clips--SoundCloud
    Videos--YouTube
    The viola is proof that man is not rational

  10. The following members say thank you to Tom Wright for this post:


  11. #83
    but that's just me Bertram Henze's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jun 2005
    Location
    0.8 pc from NGC224, upstairs
    Posts
    9,355

    Default Re: Practicing what is hard in pursuit of effortlessness

    Quote Originally Posted by Tom Wright View Post
    The paradox is that we have to pay exquisite attention to things we hope to eventually be able to ignore.

    ...boredom...


    The next day he restlessly paced the empty corridors of the ship, pretending not to look for her, though he knew she wasn't there.
    (Douglas Adams, Life the Universe and Everything)
    the world is better off without bad ideas, good ideas are better off without the world

  12. #84

    Default Re: Practicing what is hard in pursuit of effortlessness

    Quote Originally Posted by Tom Wright View Post
    The paradox is that we have to pay exquisite attention to things we hope to eventually be able to ignore. This is how we get there.
    I learned to use a fork at an early age. maybe others have as well.
    Play it like you mean it.

  13. #85

    Default Re: Practicing what is hard in pursuit of effortlessness

    Quote Originally Posted by Jim Bevan View Post
    I do disagree with her application of the truism "We are hardwired to pay attention to change, not repetition." When I practise a difficult passage over and over, it is precisely the change in my ability that I'm paying attention to. The notes, the phrases are being repeated, but not how well I'm playing them. There's a lot of change going on, and it's holding my attention.
    If there is a lot of change going on, it is not really repetition. The article is titled "Why the Progress You Make in the Practice Room Seems to Disappear Overnight". She is talking about the process of making a skill permanent. I think you are talking about developing the skill in the first place. So, I think she would say that once you get the passage to sound how you like, put it aside and then come back to it. This will make the gains you have achieved more permanent.

    Developing a skill in the first place is the tip of the iceberg. Maintaining a skill and making it permanent is the bulk of your work.
    Object to this post? Find out how to ignore me here!

  14. #86
    Registered User Jim Bevan's Avatar
    Join Date
    Feb 2010
    Location
    Dubai, UAE
    Posts
    421

    Default Re: Practicing what is hard in pursuit of effortlessness

    I can hear my last teacher's criticism and advice, and I can imagine how these notes would just seem to fall out of Rubinstein's fingertips maybe I'll get close by New Year's, at which point the show takes a week off, my family arrives (to stay), and my practising routine itself deteriorates.

    If I remember to, I'll get back to you on how it turns out.

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •