Date: Wed, 09 Sep 1998 19:57:43 -0500
From: Eddie Lewis <>
Subject: Re: Chops are shot & Building Endurance

dennis hill wrote:
> so while using the rest as much as you play formula, i am not really
> approaching my limits for anything. so do you think i need to worry about
> the day off thing?
The problem here is not the rest. The problem is the material you're working on. If what you're practicing doesn't give you a work out, then it defeats the entire purpose of alternating days. On the day that you push yourself, you should be practicing material that is physically demanding. My two "Big Days" are Tuesday and Friday. Even though I rest as much as I play, what I practice is physically challenging.

Just as an example, when I work on the Brandenburg, I do it on these two days. The same applies to just about all of my picc work. I also practice my scales and other technical stuff across my entire range for that day. If I'm practicing the D major scale on Tuesday, I start at the tonic note, take it all the way up to the top of my range, then down to low F sharp, then back to the tonic note.

The main point here is to "USE WHAT YOU'VE GOT". The entire rest thing becomes useless if you don't.

> or would you suggest that i should cut down my rest periods to tire myself
> out more in my alloted 2 hours, and then do the day off thing?


The kind of "tired" that you get from not resting is not near as beneficial as the kind of fatigue you get when you do rest. It has to do with the difference between aerobic and anaerobic energy. When you rest, you allow more blood flow in the lips, which supplies the oxygen which muscles need to continue their aerobic contractions. Deprived of that oxygen, they resort to anaerobic energy, which only has a limited supply and therefore a limited use.

So, in my opinion, resting less is not an option because there's really nothing to gain from it.

I'm almost certain that your main problem in this context is that the material you practice isn't challenging you enough, physically.

- --
Eddie "Tiger" Lewis