how does muscle memory work

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JerryPH
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Re: how does muscle memory work

Post by JerryPH » Sat Jan 13, 2018 4:14 pm

Happy girl wrote:
Sat Jan 13, 2018 11:38 am
I have just ordered "First, Learn to Practice" by Tom Hean, thank you for the recommendation Jeff.
There is a series of articles on https://bulletproofmusician.com/

The man covers everything from performance anxiety to best learning practices. Last year I signed up for his emails and every now and then he sends you an email about a topic concerning learning/performing and how the brain works and what not... very interesting reads!
My musical memoires blog/website: http://www.AccordionMemories.com

donn
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Re: how does muscle memory work

Post by donn » Sat Jan 13, 2018 4:21 pm

As a minor contribution to the good advice above -- It's my impression that this phenomenon comes, mechanically speaking, from the right cerebral hemisphere. Or something like that - never mind if that's an oversimplification, unless you're going into neurosurgery the exact details aren't so important, but there's a substantial mental faculty that allows us to act rapidly on things that would take long, troublesome thought if they had to be calculated the way a computer would do it. In a ball sport, for example, you might be able to gauge the approach of a very fast moving small object, and strike it accurately enough, with something that isn't even in your field of view, that it will go off in a somewhat predictable direction.

Stuff that if you think about it, seems a bit miraculous. It is, but it isn't. There aren't any miracles, outside of the fact that we're all here. Hence all the practice, in which we build this machine that can do these marvelous things. The additional problem I have, is to keep that machine on the job and not let it get pushed aside by other kinds of mental processes that are accustomed to getting my attention. Learning, very late in the game unfortunately, to focus better on the music when playing, and not think about my fingers or whatever.

george garside
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Re: how does muscle memory work

Post by george garside » Sat Jan 13, 2018 5:28 pm

at risk of repeating myself its down to scales exercises until there is absolutely no conscious thought needed to operate the fingers on the right notes to play either whats written on a bit of paper or stored in the brain. To the best of my knowledge there is absolutely no other way . Also many other examples of developing similar skills eg driving we just change gear according to the circulstances rather than thinking 'foot off throttle, press clutch, move gearlever from x position to y position. release clutch, open throttle etc etc. We just do it . Same with getting out of a skid ( without digital driving aids) If its been practiced on a skid pan we just do it because just like playing an instrument there just isn't time to do any concious thinking as we are doing it. Happy girls analogy re balls is very much on the same lines.

Use scale etc practice as a regular 'warm' up exercise whenever the box is picked up rather than as a chore that isn't very pleasant , perhaps has no reel purpose other than for beginners etcetc . So doing programmes the 'roads' into the satnav'. And its just as important for folk/trad/ by ear players as for serious exams and grades &conservatory stuff

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Re: how does muscle memory work

Post by jozz » Sat Jan 13, 2018 7:53 pm

Agreed about the scales, it's an investment. Certainly combined with chords/progression it will get you a long long way.

I was "forced" to pump out Schule der Gelaufigkeit series as a youngster in tempo, although I couldn't do it anymore I still feel it's stored somewhere in my brain.

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Re: how does muscle memory work

Post by JeffJetton » Sun Jan 14, 2018 4:37 pm

Happy girl wrote:
Sat Jan 13, 2018 11:38 am
I have just ordered "First, Learn to Practice" by Tom Hean, thank you for the recommendation Jeff.
Glad to hear! When you get it and read it, maybe you could follow-up with a post about what you thought of the book. (I hope you like it, but you never know... :D )

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