Summer warmups, plus benching that bench

It’s June, the roses are in full bloom and we are looking forward to fun summertime activities. Even though vacations often interrupt our regular piano practice, I find them useful for questioning routine: are we doing things on autopilot? Why not pretend we’re reading the score/playing our pieces for the first time?  We may gain new insights, maybe even start forming new habits that are more helpful. 

If you don’t have much time to practice this summer, I would suggest playing just 10-15 minutes a few times a week, to keep your fingers limber.  Here are some short warm-up exercises I fashioned for you, using our favorite music for inspiration.  Each great composer has his particular keyboard style and technical demands: dexterity and coordination for Bach, arpeggios and octaves for Beethoven, arm flexibility for Chopin, complex harmonies for Rachmaninov, etc.  Feel free to share these PDFs with your friends.

I also wanted to share my recent routine change: I started using a piano chair with a back. It really helps keep my posture in check and prevents me from leaning forward too much.  Check out this video and see if this might be the right move for you.  I purchased my chair here.

Have a wonderful summer!