Lip Flexibilities



  • Any time I skip doing lip flexibilities in my daily (7 days ) morning exercises I immediately notice a stiffness in the afternoon when I play ballads and other tunes. So I am convinced of their importance. The question is, when to do them. When I have been doing them, they were always near or at the end of my hourly practice session.
    Your thoughts on this would be greatly appreciated.



  • I find that the Eugene Blee lip warm ups work really well at getting the blood flow and lips into a supple mode. The Blee warm ups have been posted elsewhere on this site.



  • Great topic, GeorgeB. I seem to only find 60 or so minutes a day for practice. Lip flexibility and finger dexterity are my two primary areas of focus right now. I do that sort or work right after doing long tone scales and before practicing tunes. If pressed for time, tunes will get sacrificed before flexibilities. This approach seems to be working for me, but progress is never as rapid as I would like it to be.

    Jim



  • @Comeback said in Lip Flexibilities:
    ...If pressed for time, tunes will get sacrificed before flexibilities. This approach seems to be working for me, but progress is never as rapid as I would like it to be.

    Jim

    Jim, I would support that you have the right priorities with time management!



  • Long Tones to start out - maybe Chicowicz Long Tones also to get the air moving - then straight into flexibilities. I concentrate on (varies) Schlossberg, Maggio and Spaulding.


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    My morning warm up includes a section of flexibilities - just enough to help get ready for the day and make shakes work right. When I was in college trying to learn shakes, I did sections of the Colin Lip Flexibilities as a warm up every other day, and it worked quite well. Went back to that alternating with Claude Gordon when I had to work myself back from sick and injured later on, and it worked very well.
    My dogs seem to think flexibilities are Happy Puppy Sing -a-long time. It was cute the first couple of times, and not so cute years later!



  • Both flugelgirl and Dr.Go indicated they did lip flexibility exercises as a warm up. I am now wondering why I never tried doing them as a warmup for my afternoon ballad playing session. Well, it is on the table for this afternoon's session...two hours from now...☺



  • @Kehaulani said in Lip Flexibilities:

    Long Tones to start out - maybe Chicowicz Long Tones also to get the air moving - then straight into flexibilities. I concentrate on (varies) Schlossberg, Maggio and Spaulding.

    Greg Wing, Professor of Music/Trumpet at Morehead State University, has a 20 minute routine that I have been using since I began my comeback 4 years ago. The first half of that routine has Flow Studies by Chicowicz, so I'm starting out with long tones, too. And this whole routine really helped me get going again after a 50 year hiatus.



  • @GeorgeB said in Lip Flexibilities:

    Both flugelgirl and Dr.Go indicated they did lip flexibility exercises as a warm up. I am now wondering why I never tried doing them as a warmup for my afternoon ballad playing session. Well, it is on the table for this afternoon's session...two hours from now...☺

    Looking forward to your review on how this works out for you!



  • Just to be clear, Long Tones by Chicowicz is commonly misrepresented by calling them Flow Studies. They are different:

    https://www.windsongpress.com/product/cichowicz-long-tone-studies/
    cichowicz

    https://www.windsongpress.com/product/cichowicz-flow-studies-vol-1/



  • I like the green Schlossberg book for flexibility studies.



  • @Dale-Proctor said in Lip Flexibilities:

    I like the green Schlossberg book for flexibility studies.

    Is there a chartreuse one? 😁


  • Global Moderator

    I would recommend making lip flexibilities a priority in your practice routine. Books I recommend:

    Chas. Colin Lip Flexibilities I & II
    Bai Lin Lip Flexibilities (forgot the official name, just look up Bai Lin)
    Schlossberg
    James Stamp No.3+

    Cichowicz flow studies are great, although they have a different purpose than the above named books.



  • That's the name of it, Lip Flexibilities (Bai Lin).
    Excellent book.



  • I used Colin's Advanced Lip Flexibilities in High School (1960s) - Switched to Earl Irons in the 80s. Currently I alternate my daily warm ups relative to sources and routines - but they always include long tones and flexibility exercises



  • @Kehaulani
    Thanks for clarifying the difference between Chicowiz long tone exercises and flow studies. Main thing, the 20 minute routine has been working for me these past 4 years.
    I also do a long tone exercise of WHOLE NOTES only that I was doing as my afternoon playing warmup. But I am considering a change there.



  • @Dr-GO said in Lip Flexibilities:

    @GeorgeB said in Lip Flexibilities:

    Both flugelgirl and Dr.Go indicated they did lip flexibility exercises as a warm up. I am now wondering why I never tried doing them as a warmup for my afternoon ballad playing session. Well, it is on the table for this afternoon's session...two hours from now...☺

    Looking forward to your review on how this works out for you!

    Hey, Doc.
    I have been doing a 5 minute warmup routine of whole note long tones that always seemed to benefit my tone in the first pece of music I play, but the 5 minute flexibility I used yesterday did something that long tones never did. They eliminated a stiffness, especially with intervals, that I often encountered with my first or second song in my afternoon sessions. Now, maybe my chops were just in a better condition yesterday. I don't know. But I am going to warmup with flexibilities for the next couple of weeks to see how it goes.



  • @GeorgeB said in Lip Flexibilities:

    @Dr-GO said in Lip Flexibilities:

    @GeorgeB said in Lip Flexibilities:

    Both flugelgirl and Dr.Go indicated they did lip flexibility exercises as a warm up. I am now wondering why I never tried doing them as a warmup for my afternoon ballad playing session. Well, it is on the table for this afternoon's session...two hours from now...☺

    Looking forward to your review on how this works out for you!

    Hey, Doc.
    I have been doing a 5 minute warmup routine of whole note long tones that always seemed to benefit my tone in the first pece of music I play, but the 5 minute flexibility I used yesterday did something that long tones never did. They eliminated a stiffness, especially with intervals, that I often encountered with my first or second song in my afternoon sessions. Now, maybe my chops were just in a better condition yesterday. I don't know. But I am going to warmup with flexibilities for the next couple of weeks to see how it goes.

    Great to hear this! I really think the octave slur component of the Blee warm up exercise is what it takes to get the blood flowing through the lip muscles. Getting oxygen (and glucose) to highly toned muscles is key to optimizing muscle activity out of it's resting threshold.


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