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Passing Out in Upper Range, or Using Too Much Air Pressure


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afp
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PostPosted: Wed Feb 15, 2012 2:25 pm    Post subject: Re: a Reply with quote

hien peter wrote:
Pressure is one aspect, I wonder wether it could also be CO2-retention.

If you play for a longer time and long high parts,
it could come to too less gas exchange in the distant lung.
Older guys (like us ) have less exchange capacity.

Perhaps it could also help to take some deep breaths between ?


If I understand this correctly, CO2 retention would take a couple of minutes to be a factor. According to Dr. Dave Harrison, we have a max of about six seconds from when we first feel the onset of blacking out to it happening unless we release the air pressure. It can also happen much more quickly, as Garrett experienced.
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afp
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PostPosted: Wed Feb 15, 2012 2:27 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

paulabbott wrote:
I heard from a reliable source that Bud Brisbois explained his air usage in this way: A teaspoon of air for a hi "C". Half a teaspoon for the "E". Quarter of a teaspoon of air for the "G" (five ledger lines). I am paraphrasing of course, but this philosophy has certainly changed my approach to playing higher and longer. Don't tank up and use a ton of air. Remember that you really don't need a lot of air (volume) to play higher notes, just faster air. The trumpet was designed to project and the higher notes just carry naturally anyways.


Agreed. The trick is finding what that feels like and transitioning to that approach.
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drewwilkie86
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PostPosted: Thu Feb 16, 2012 7:33 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Playing really well in the upper register (or any register, really) just boils down to letting go of all the tension. The tighter you hold your chops, the harder you're going to have to work to get the sound to project. The harder you work, the more pressure you put on your lungs and body, and you begin to black out.

You must relax the chops, and LET the notes out...don't FORCE them out. Let it flow. This doesn't mean I'm suggesting you play with a wide-open aperture or something along those lines. I'm suggesting that instead of "clamping down" on the air with your chops and your body, you simply let your chops just float on the breeze. Make sense?
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hilgenboogie
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PostPosted: Thu Feb 16, 2012 7:52 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Good advice so far. Let me chime in with the help of an MD that it sounds like you already know...

http://wedgemouthpiece.tumblr.com/post/4090902168/passing-out-from-high-notes-part-1-common-causes

http://wedgemouthpiece.tumblr.com/post/4106561760/passing-out-from-high-notes-part-2-how-to-make-it

http://wedgemouthpiece.tumblr.com/post/4165293265/passing-out-from-high-notes-part-3-how-to-prevent-it

These are from Dr. Dave's blog, from March 2011.

If I were you and looking for a good quiet exercise, I'd search TH for the "Faddis high note exercise." There has been plenty of posting on this very popular exercise. It's a great way to build range while maintaining the relaxation from playing quiet. Also check out Jeanne Pocius's book Trumpeting by Nature, and John Daniel's Special Studies for Trumpet. Lots of good info in both those books for this type of development.

Best,
Matt
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afp
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PostPosted: Wed Feb 22, 2012 8:22 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

I have been noticing that I have trained myself well to suck my gut in when playing and then to suck it in hard in the upper range. Last night, I made a concerted effort to not do that and noticed the upper range came out just fine with MUCH less air support.

I started trying the old way of breathing which is more of an ab crunch that a gut suck, and that seemed to stave off the initiation of black out symptoms, but there was still too much pressure.

I then tried raising my chest as I took a breath. I guess more of a start low and fill high approach. That seemed to work best. With my chest raised I am
not in a good posture to suck in my gut hard, yet I still have plenty of air. I see how this approach goes for a couple days.
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afp
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PostPosted: Sat Feb 25, 2012 8:28 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

The change in breathing turned out not to be a big help, however, I did come across one. My local teacher (a pro player) said his answer was always to open up the equipment. Pops told me I needed to back off about 5%. I put the two together and added 1/8" gap to my MP backbore. That made a BIG difference. The horn is a little freer blowing at the MP, which is enough for those times when I am not as relaxed as I should be I don't start to pass out. Mosdt of the change occured with just 1/16" more gap, and I might eventually wind up there.

I still need to learn to relax more, and the "siren" exercises Keith Fiala suggested, along with the suggestions here to play softly, and the suggestions on flow studies; will be tools to get there.

Part of my issue is I am still playing too big in the upper register. I need to learn to do as Roger Ingram says and "trust my projection."

EDIT: None of the above crap worked at my convert on March 5th.
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afp
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PostPosted: Fri Mar 09, 2012 3:14 pm    Post subject: Solved Almost Passing Out!!!!! Reply with quote

Though I should pass this on.

I played terribly at my convert earlier this week. I was so worried about staying relaxed and not starting to pass out that I overcompensated and undershot many mid and mid high register notes--notes I hadn't clammed in a long time. And that was all for naught as I started to pass out after the first shout section lick in Jazz Police anyway.

I was so pissed I didn't even touch the horn the next day. I reviewed this thread as well as the PM I received concerning this thread. One of the people I reached out to was a friend who happens to have his doctorate in trumpet, as well as my local teacher, a pro player.

The day after the gig I got out the horn. I started playing a pretty melody in the upper range that went to High G, focusing on a centered, unstrained tone and freely flowing air. That seemed to be working. I then messed around with MP cup, gap, backbore, tuning slide and found that I did indeed have the optimum set up for me. After about an hour twenty of messing around, mostly above High C and with a two ten minute rests thrown in, it was time to face the dragon.

I played the shout section of Jazz Police a couple times and started to get light headed. I stopped and reset. For some unknown reason--most like Divine guidance--I adjusted my posture. I slightly bent my legs, straightened my spine, and put my head back a little.

I played the shout section again, and didn't even come close to lightheadedness. I did it again, and again for a total of 10-12 times. By the end I was ripping up from the Bb and playing the pickup to the last two measures. I never once came remotely close to passing out.

When I finished I told my wife I had "fixed me." She said "I know, I could tell by your sound.

Of course, this new posture is a radical concept I invented entirely on my own and had never come across before.

I can now push air has hard as I want and not come close to passing out.
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Mark Curry
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PostPosted: Mon Mar 12, 2012 8:14 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

paulabbott wrote:
I heard from a reliable source that Bud Brisbois explained his air usage in this way: A teaspoon of air for a hi "C". Half a teaspoon for the "E". Quarter of a teaspoon of air for the "G" (five ledger lines). I am paraphrasing of course, but this philosophy has certainly changed my approach to playing higher and longer. Don't tank up and use a ton of air. Remember that you really don't need a lot of air (volume) to play higher notes, just faster air. The trumpet was designed to project and the higher notes just carry naturally anyways.


+1

As I sometimes coach high-school trumpet sections I run into the subject of passing out (or blacking out) quite often.

Generally, it is the result of too much stored air Not getting released.

Ken Titmus of Warburton Music (a fine player!) showed me this simple drill:

Take a normal breath, then exhale (normally, NOT pushing).

Now play something on the horn.

KT explained that even with a normal exhalation we still have retained about 1/3 our our lung capacity. I have found it much easier to play the upper register compressing this smaller amount of air. You will also find that your abs and other compression muscles come into play using this smaller amount of air.

You may have to fight the sensation of "drowning" for a while as you get used to using less air, but that eventually goes away as your body gets used to the lower air volume used.

For those times when we do "overload" and start to see "stars", I teach the Yoga "cleansing breath" 4 or 5 times (or as many as it takes!) in quick succession[/b] to get rid of the excess air. This will help get you back to normal in a second or two.

Works for me. Works for the kids, too.
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afp
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PostPosted: Sat Mar 24, 2012 10:46 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Mark,

Thanks for posting that. I just came across that concept and your post reinforces it.
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