Taking Breaks

Bass on standWhen practicing or playing for long periods of time we must not forget the importance of taking breaks.  This is especially true if you have the luxury of practicing for many hours during the day.  If you find you are practicing for long hours you should strive to take a break every 45 minutes to an hour.  This gives your body and mind a moment to relax, preventing fatigue and allowing you to better focus when returning to the task at hand.

This is also true for those who practice many days during the week.  It is good to take a day or two off every once in a while just to get away from the bass and focus on other things for a change.  Sometimes we can be so focused on learning new things that we don’t feel as though we are improving.  I have found that on occasion, after getting away from the bass for a day or two, upon my return to it I have a better realization of how much I have improved.  There have been times where I have put down the bass for a few days only to come back to it feeling like I have reached an all time high in my playing.  I don’t know if it is a purely mental thing or if it just took a few days away from my instrument to truly absorb what I had been working on, but time and again I have experienced substantial growth by doing just this.

I think sometimes we get so wound up and intent on learning something that we don’t even realize when we have achieved our goal.  Time away from our instrument allows us time to reflect, seemingly giving us greater confidence and desire when we return.  This is especially true if you feel like you have hit a wall and just can’t get pass it.  Put your bass down and walk away, it will come to you in time.  It may seem counter intuitive, but sometimes the best thing you can do is not play.

What do you think?  Am I crazy or here, or have you had similar experiences?