Practive Schedule

Discussion in 'Ask Michael Dimin' started by OldDawg, Sep 20, 2003.

  1. OldDawg


    Jul 4, 2003
    Los Angeles, CA
    Regretfully I don't make my living playing so my time to practice is limited. I was wondering if you could recommend what would be a good practice schedule for someone with only an hour or two a day. What percentage of the time to give to technique, sightreading, etc, etc. My interests are in Jazz and Funk.
  2. Mike Dimin

    Mike Dimin

    Dec 11, 1999
    Clinician: EA, Zon, Boomerang, TI. Author "The Art of Solo Bass"
    An Hour or two a day - what a luxury. Perhaps it is having 2 kinds at home but I wish I could regularly schedule that time.

    Since you don't play for a living, I think there are some things you need to ask yourself. First of all how much do you need to read and how important is it for you. I rarely teach my adult players (mostly recreational or church players) to site read. I do however work on charts with them.

    I think practice should be fun. Every few weeks take a moment to prioritize what is important to you. For example, if I have a gig with a lot of reading coming up, I'll devote more time to it. With BassQuake coming up on Saturday, I am spending a bit more time working on those elements that I'll need for that show. Once you prioritize, create a program that both fun and effective. I will usually get through the things that I need to first. This is based on the #1 priority that I determined earlier. Secondly, I will take a book or method that I like or is new and do some review. In this way I can add new elements to my playing. I tend to look at the trechnique very broadly and work it in more detail over time. The last part of my practicing has to do with creation. I will try to incorporate some of the ideas I worked on (or from a previous gig) into my work. This could be a new wrinkle on an existing songor a new arrangment.

    As for time on each exercise - this is variable and based on my level of frustration. If something is frustrating, I put it aside and work on something else, coming back to the frustrating idea later or on another day. I do this in order to keep my practice and therefore my playing fresh and inspiring