Do you have a practice routine?

Hi All
I want to get a bit more serious about my playing and start building a structured practice regime so I don’t just noodle about with things I am comfortable with.
Anyone care to share their practice routines?

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I am interested as well. I am near the end of the course and I want to start a structured and regimented practice routine. Maybe our trusty bass teacher @JoshFossgreen can give us a few suggestions.

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This is a noble resolution indeed… it usually goes “bad” for me because I just lack the discipline and go off and “practice” whatever I feel like in the present moment…

But, if you want to establish a routine, the experts advice to include several elements, all of them should be practiced daily, if only for a little while each:

  • fretboard knowledge and application (scales, arpeggios, …)
  • playing with a metronome or a drum track to practice time and groove
  • technique (e.g., alternate plucking, string crossing, articulation, slapping, …)
  • play alongs, covers, maybe even trying to transcribe a riff, bass line, solo, etc
  • specialized study of whatever genre/sub-genre you most like (e.g., blues progressions and bass lines etc.)

Some of these are way more fun than others, which is really the big challenge here :grin:

Good luck! Keep us posted!!

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I like to mix a little fun, a little learning, and a little work into every practice session.

-By fun, I mean playing a bunch of stuff that I know by rote such as a few cool riffs that I’ve developed, some covers that I’ve been working on, different scales, etc. This has a couple of benefits: First, it gets me and my fingers warmed up and ready to do some real work. Secondly, it reaffirms my confidence that I really do know how to play bass, but just need to improve.

-Study is exactly what it implies. Watching videos, reading lesson materials from the bass classes that I’m currently taking; and implementing them on the bass as I study.

-Work involves improving what I know and practicing new things. Playing at a faster tempo for example, improvising, learning new basslines, reading sheet music and playing it without looking at the neck, etc.

Then I study some more before bed. Amazingly, things you learn right before sleeping have a way of sinking deeply into your brain. I won’t pretend to know the reason why, but it works for me. The next day the things that I studied before bed seem to come easier.

I hope this helps. It’s my way, but may not be the best way for everyone.

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I’ve found that practice in the abstract can be very difficult to remember and motivate for. Application based practice (aka: panic induced practice) can be very effective!

This happens naturally when there’s a gig or a recording session and other people need me to learn new challenging things.

In this world of no gigs and work, it’s challenging. So! Make up challenges, and make yourself record / perform them! That’s what I’ve been doing.
It helps me because it gives me a deadline (self created) and an audience (the panic / don’t-fail-in-front-of-audience scare factor), a rewards system (a clear completion, and potential for feedback), and a clear goal of what needs to be worked on (whatever the challenges are for the piece).

So!
I’ve been working on remote collaborations with musician friends, which brings a host of challenges I need to work on.
My practice time consists of working on material designed to inform the performances.

Not sure if this speaks to anyone else out there, but I find I really really need a deadline and an application in order to be devoted to the practice time!

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I always work better when I have a scary goal.
This is why I am going to try and do a daily progress video on me learning the chicken. I want to show some sort of improvement each day or I am going to look foolish.

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???

Edit: Got it. I just saw your other post.

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I still don’t understand :joy:

Edit: now I got it LoL!!!

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Killer. yes, me too. Looking forward to the vids!

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This is good advice, and I’m learning it. I noticed that the only real growth with practicing I’ve had in the last 4 months or so has been when I sort of “had” to do something. Learn a song with new bandmates, that was a big one, put the pedal to the metal so to speak!

But then I would get really f#@k!ing lazy with practicing on my own. My bass would just sit there, sometimes a week or longer. No discipline or care to even pick it up. No regrets, just an observation. Felt like I learned a lot in social contexts, which is helpful. But now, need to go back, and actually even un-learn some of the bad technique I started doing on the fly. And what better time than when we can’t be around others physically for awhile, haha!

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