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Good breath control is the one of the most important things to learn when first starting to the play the trumpet, and gaining good breath control will lead to a more pleasant tone and much greater endurance. If you spend a few minutes each day on breathing exercises, you'll find your trumpet playing will improve immeasurably just in a few months. It'll also mean your range will improve, and you'll be more likely to hit those top Cs you've only dreamt of up to now, with ease!
Many beginner trumpet players are taught to take deep breaths before they play, but they don't always take breath from the right place. A good rule of thumb to remember is this: if your shoulders move when you breathe in, there is a good chance that you are not breathing correctly. Instead, you need to breathe from your diaphragm. Breathing from the diaphragm leads to a reduction in pressure in the upper body, which allows for air to enter the lungs.
Practice breathing from your diaphragm along with your other daily trumpet exercises; you'll know when you're doing it properly, as you'll be able to see and feel your stomach rise and fall. If you're finding it tricky, there are some exercises you can do specifically to improve diaphragmatic breathing.
And before you take a breath, first breathe out. This may sound crazy, but you can't take in a full tank of fresh air if you already have stale air in your lungs. So release your air and then take a big breath, letting the air fill you, front, back, and sides.
Play long notes
A great exercise to help develop breath control is to play long notes, and play the note for as long as you can. Aim for 30 seconds at first, and then develop it from there. Pick a note at the lower end of the register and play it as quietly as possible. Do this every day for a few weeks and you'll notice a drastic change in your ability to control your breath and, therefore, in your tone and endurance.
Regular yoga practice has many benefits for the body, but when it comes to gaining better breath control for trumpet playing, it can be invaluable. Yoga teaches not only awareness of breath, but also how to inhale and exhale deeply, and these lessons can be carried forward into your playing. You don't need to attend a yoga class; there are simple yoga exercises available on YouTube for free.
Whether you use a Bach trumpet or another brand, keep these tips in mind.Share