I'd like to introduce you to "The Breathing Book," by David Vining, Professor of Trombone at Northern Arizona University in Flagstaff, Arizona (you may remember David from his rib movement video from a previous post).
The Breathing Book is both a text book and a method book. Each chapter contains an image and description on the left page and a playing activity on the right. The playing activity is specially designed to help players integrate the information from that chapter into their playing in musically meaningful ways. The Breathing Book can be used as a daily breathing warm-up by selecting a few chapters to play. It can also be used to solve other playing problems, such as articulation, range and endurance because when your breathing improves, everything else tends to fall into place!
Just as the description says, this book serves as a very useful tool in teaching about breathing along with practical applications for brass players. I've found that the book works very well in tandem with my lessons, "Dynamic Stability & Breath," adding exercises done with (and without) the instrument to clarify and reinforce the learning from the Feldenkrais lessons. Since receiving the book, I've used the materials for myself, my students and in the trombone choir with very good results.
David also has a publishing company called "Mountain Peak Music" with some very valuable materials for brass players. I will review more of his material in the future and for now say, "thank you David," for filling in some very important gaps for all of us.
Thanks for reading!
Be sure to check out the DMS podcasts, Feldenkrais mini lessons for musicians and speakers.
You can purchase the “Dynamic Musician Series: Dynamic Stability and Breath, Vols. 1 & 2” here.
Chili notes (in Germany and Europe) Volume 1 Volume 2
If you have any specific questions or comments on breathing and posture, send me e-mail and I’ll try to respond in a future blog. Until then, breathe well!