Organizing your practice time

We get lots of questions revolving around how to practice efficiently. The reality is that there are an infinite amount of things to practice and you have a limited amount of time. So what's the solution?

The easiest solution is to set goals prior to every practice session. If you have allotted yourself 2 hours to practice how do you make the most of it? These goals will serve as a framework for things that you want to accomplish in this time. So let's say that you are working on something like short short long and the 4-2-1 Triplet Grid. Instead of just starting your practice session and seeing where it takes you, have a plan for exactly how you are going to progress on these exercises. This can be done through blocking out certain amounts of time in your practice session for specific tempos. Here's an example of what this could look like.

Example (2 hour practice session)

0:00-0:15 Warm up your hands                                                                                                              

0:15-0:30 Short Short Long at piano (120bpm)

0:30-0:45 Short Short Long at piano (130bpm)

0:45-1:00 Short Short Long at piano (140bpm)

1:00-1:15 Short Short Long at piano (150 bpm)

1:15-1:30 4-2-1 Triplet Grid (120bpm)

1:30-2:00 4-2-1 Triplet Grid (130 BPM)

I challenge you to ACTUALLY WRITE DOWN what you are going to do before you begin. If you have your plan laid out in front of you and hold your self to these times you will be much more productive.

Planning this way allows for you to really focus on what you need to and get more done in a shorter amount of time. This also guarantees that you avoid the classic "time wasting practice". This is where you sit behind your pad or drum and play mindlessly for extended periods of time. Although we are all guilty of this It certainly is not the best use of your time. 

So I urge you to organize your practice time and get the most out it! You will be astonished with how quickly you will grow as a player when you are getting the full use out of your time.



Ryan Ellis