Squeezing in Practice Time

Especially at this busy season, practice time can sometimes fall by the wayside. Playing the violin involves very intricate muscle movements that must be maintained and practiced on a daily basis. Unfortunately, there are no shortcuts in violin practice, but here are some tips to get you or your child into the practice groove. 1) Get into a routine. Schedule practice time for yourself or your child at the same time every day.

2) If necessary, break it up: Spend 25 minutes on scales and/or etudes in the morning, 25 minutes on your solo piece at some point in the afternoon and evening. (The actual amount of practice time depends on the playing level of the student.)

3) Be realistic - give yourself a day off. Try to practice 6 out of the 7 days of the week.  I know that some students won't be able to practice every single day. However, it's crucial to maintain regularity in the practice schedule. Practicing 30 minutes on a daily basis will be much more productive than "cramming" the day before your lesson or a big performance.

4) Use a practice chart to record daily and weekly practice. And be honest! :) This will help you and your teacher know how you are progressing. If necessary, for younger students, parents can work with the teacher to arrange rewards for diligent practice.