Resting During Band

Most of you already know how important it is to rest. We make that pretty clear in the lessons on a consistent basis. What you may not know yet is how to rest during a band rehearsal in a way which gives you more endurance but doesn’t compromise rehearsal ethics. It’s not right to just put your instrument down in the middle of a rehearsal, but you won’t feel a need to do that if you know how to rest.

A lot of you have a habit of plastering your mouthpiece to your lips and leaving it there for long periods of time. Even if you have four measures of rest, you keep the mouthpiece  planted…..cutting off the circulation to the lips. This is not ideal. There is a better way.

It’s good to stay ready in band. That’s what you should have been taught – to leave your instrument up so you don’t miss an entrance. But that does NOT mean you have to keep pressure on the lips. It doesn’t mean the mouthpiece should still be touching.

Here’s a rule all of you should follow:

Take the instrument off your lips for all rests
longer than  one beat.

It’s as simple as that. If you follow this simple rule, you will gain an increase in your endurance and you will hardly ever feel like the rehearsal was “hard” or that you couldn’t get through it. You can rehearse practically all day this way without getting tired.

The trick is to learn how to take the instrument off of the lips without making it look like you are resting. This is especially true for marching season when you MUST keep the horn up at appropriate times.

When you are required to keep your instrument up, simply pull the mouthpiece half an inch from your lips while keeping the instrument at the same angle. This works. It gives you the rest and resulting endurance without doing anything that you could get in trouble for in band.