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 Post subject: Arm/Forearm weight +very fast chromatic octaves
PostPosted: Sun Mar 04, 2007 11:09 am 
Hello everybody...

Can someone give a detailed explanation of the forearm/arm weight ? (+help on very fast chromatic octaves)


It is very appreciated


Last edited by Anonymous on Sat Mar 17, 2007 3:48 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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PostPosted: Sun Mar 04, 2007 9:20 pm 
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Ask your teacher.

If you don't have a teacher, it's time to find one.


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PostPosted: Mon Mar 05, 2007 12:51 pm 
unfortunately here we dont have very good much teachers..... :(

neither my teacher, she isnt that good.... she dont know the correct method to teach, she dont know about arm weight :evil: :x :(


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PostPosted: Mon Mar 05, 2007 7:29 pm 
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let me put it in a simple way.

Do you know physics??in hschool.
The word momentum(P) = mass X velocity and Force =massXAccleration

When you throw you arm at some one with out moving your body. You are using your arm weight.
And when you are punching someone with your body behind it, you are using both of the arm and body weight. Therefore, the later generate more momentun, there fore more power.

Back to piano, its a delicate instrument, apply arm weight/body behind your finger stroke to the key, is so called the "weight playing".

As a pianist, some time in your progress, you will find a tempo where a balance between your muslce reflex and momentum will give you a best efficient way. And you will starts to realize that playing fast(not too fast) is more efficient than playing too slow.

I hope this gives you abetter motivation...


Thanks


Last edited by johnmar78 on Mon Mar 05, 2007 9:28 pm, edited 2 times in total.

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PostPosted: Mon Mar 05, 2007 8:33 pm 
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johnmar78 wrote:
Do you know physics??in hschool.
The word momentum = mass X accleration square.

Not so. This would mean there is no momentum for a linear motion. Would be really hard to play like that.

From wikipedia:

In classical mechanics, momentum (pl. momenta; SI unit kg m/s) is the product of the mass and velocity of an object.

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PostPosted: Mon Mar 05, 2007 9:26 pm 
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techneut wrote:
johnmar78 wrote:
Do you know physics??in hschool.
The word momentum = mass X velocity .

Not so. This would mean there is no momentum for a linear motion. Would be really hard to play like that.

From wikipedia:

In classical mechanics, momentum (pl. momenta; SI unit kg m/s) is the product of the mass and velocity of an object.


sorry Chris, Its velocity. not accleration.. . my memory mistake.

we dealing with force F(piano touch)=mass X accleartion; and momemtum P= mass(M) X Velocity(V) .
thereforfoe Force =(P/V)X accleartion. The mass is replaced with P/V. So piano playing is effected by "linear motion"-speed and accleration. This applies to force(f).

So by looking at the equation F= (p/v)XA
By all means, if you had a bigger build or bigger mass, naturally (in theory), you would produce a stronger tone as compared to a smaller person where he/she have to work harder eg she or he can either increase the accleration of the finger storke or increase body mass(get fatter :lol: ).

Or think this, with FF playing, you need a balnce between weight(natural fall)-massXaccleartion.
But with reduced accleartion to zero, but a constant linear velocity, you will get a softer tone.


Does this make sense now Chris??


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PostPosted: Mon Mar 05, 2007 10:41 pm 
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The problem with trying to explain how to use forearm/arm weight in piano playing without actually being there with the learner is that it's prone to all kinds of misinterpretation.

Using the wrong set of muscles or too much weight in piano playing can be as disastrous as not using enough weight. Injuries, pain while practicing or playing, lack of precision, etc. Therefore, a beginner can not be sure to apply the right concepts in different types of passages and approaches playing on the keyboard without guidance.

Stephen, you seem to ask a lot of different questions about how to play : use of pedal in one thread, then tricks for a certain Chopin piece in another and now use of arm weight. That's why I strongly suggest you get a teacher to at least learn these basics concepts with someone who can tell you're doing them right or wrong. Otherwise, buy a book like the ones written by G. Sandor or even Paul Loyonnet.

I can't overemphasize the fact that if you learn to play the wrong way, not only you'll have to start again from scratch but you'll first have to undo all the faulty patterns you will have acquired thinking they were fine.

The basic principle of the forearm/arm weight is to use your fingers as pivots on which the weight in your arms up to your shoulders (and sometimes even more for fff passages) is resting, instead of only playing using the strength in the fingers. This principle also helps the player to always keep a firm touch with the "bottom of the keyboard" and thus improve playing precision.

Remember that this is only a principle, not a complete means in itself to play in a single perfect way. A true pianist must be able to play only from the fingers, but also only using the forearm/arm weight principle, and then also combining both, no to mention several other other techniques depending on the particular passage needed. For example, very fast staccato octaves using both hands involve a completely different approach than legatissimo at ppp. A player who can't master such different approaches will sound the same in too many drastically opposed nuances.

Remember this explanation represents about 0,001% of what you actually need to learn and test in practice. Hence why I so strongly suggest you find a teacher.


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PostPosted: Mon Mar 05, 2007 10:46 pm 
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[Hey, I like this part. I agree with you totally.....finger power........follwed by other parts.

A true pianist must be able to play only from the fingers, but also only using the forearm/arm weight principle, and then also combining both, no to mention several other other techniques


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PostPosted: Tue Mar 06, 2007 12:15 am 
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The best amount of weight to use is the correct amount needed to facilitate coordination. If you use too much, strength breaks down. If you use to little you'll get a cramp in your forearm. Find the right amount of weight (which varies instant to instant during a performance.) It's not a static state. Quite the opposite, when we play, our entire plaing mechanism is in a state of flux. So, the proper weight on the thumb may be 70g but on the next finger, it may be only 20g, the pinkie might need 45g. All these adjustments of weight take place almost instantaneously during performance.

As with the 10/1, the thumb carries about 40g the second finger carries about 60g, the fourth finger carries much less weight, 25g the pinkie carries the same weight as the index finger 40g. That formula works for my biomechanics and the properties of my piano.

Pete


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PostPosted: Tue Mar 06, 2007 6:35 am 
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johnmar78 wrote:
Does this make sense now Chris??

No idea. I am totally disinterested in this kind of scientific approach to music making. I just happened to notice that your formula was wrong....

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PostPosted: Tue Mar 06, 2007 6:45 pm 
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techneut wrote:
johnmar78 wrote:
Does this make sense now Chris??

No idea. I am totally disinterested in this kind of scientific approach to music making. I just happened to notice that your formula was wrong....


yes , i know what you mean. These formulas are the basic laws of physic...derivated from NEWTON not myself. F=ma and a=velocity/time. Accleration= Its the rate of changing velocity(direction) in a given time.
By all means, play the piano with what you feel is best to PRODUCE that tone.

Unfortunately, we all born on this planet, and you can not beat the law of physics. Everything we do are involved with these basic laws.

Unless you are on the moon where the gravity is much lighter..


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PostPosted: Tue Mar 06, 2007 9:28 pm 
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A little off topic are we? :wink:



All I know about applying weight is that you must relax yourself. Let there be a natural weight falling onto your fingers. If you try to push down with your shoulders you will only limit your fingers.


That's all i know. :x

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PostPosted: Tue Mar 06, 2007 10:21 pm 
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juufa72 wrote:
A little off topic are we? :wink:



All I know about applying weight is that you must relax yourself. Let there be a natural weight falling onto your fingers. If you try to push down with your shoulders you will only limit your fingers.


That's all i know. :x


Yes, Juffa, natural weight playing has its limitations....we are all humans not alliens :lol:


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PostPosted: Wed Mar 07, 2007 5:27 am 
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juufa72 wrote:
Let there be a natural weight falling onto your fingers.

Ouch... doesn't that hurt ? :P

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PostPosted: Wed Mar 07, 2007 8:48 pm 
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techneut wrote:
juufa72 wrote:
Let there be a natural weight falling onto your fingers.

Ouch... doesn't that hurt ? :P


I don't understand? Are you making fun of american-english verb usage? I meant that the weight of your fingers/hands/arms should be enough not having to rely on a your shoulders.

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PostPosted: Wed Mar 07, 2007 11:33 pm 
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I think, perhaps we should be considering not weight but potential and kinetic energy. A played finger loaded with a weight behind it has very little potential (and therefore very little kinetic) energy. A finger that is intelligently and strategically placed (so as to create the maximum potential energy) in the instant before keystroke would be a better technique than just crushing your fingers into the keybed, with the weight of your arm. After a key is played, the only weight required is either that to hold that key down so its tone is continued or to provide a pivot point for other parts of the playing mechanism. The correct load(s) is/are to be determined by the individual and his instrument. More is not always better.

I believe it was Anton Rubinstein (and correct me if I'm wrong) who told a young Josef Hoffman, "Play it with your nose, but play it well!"

In other words, he didn't really care what one did to make the sound, just as long as it sounded good.

KISS

Pete


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PostPosted: Thu Mar 08, 2007 7:11 am 
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juufa72 wrote:
I don't understand? Are you making fun of american-english verb usage?

Yes of course. I am known to do that :lol:

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PostPosted: Thu Mar 08, 2007 8:08 am 
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juufa72 wrote:
techneut wrote:
juufa72 wrote:
Let there be a natural weight falling onto your fingers.

Ouch... doesn't that hurt ? :P


I don't understand? Are you making fun of american-english verb usage? I meant that the weight of your fingers/hands/arms should be enough not having to rely on a your shoulders.


Yes, it's better to avoid letting weights falling onto the fingers, like the keyflap or so :lol:

Regarding support of body weight beside the fingers - I have seen a video of Arthur Rubinstein, where he not only used the support of the shoulders, but the whole body. He literally jumped off the chair for very strong chord playing.

I agree with Pete, as long as it sounds good, it is all ok.
And I also agree with John, that for soft legato playing there is a very relaxed body, shoulders, arms, fingers required. Also to feel the gravity force of the fingers weight in order to produce soft and evenly sound.

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PostPosted: Thu Mar 08, 2007 8:35 am 
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MindenBlues wrote:
Yes, it's better to avoid letting weights falling onto the fingers, like the keyflap or so :lol:

[OT] Did you see that video clip of Igudesman and Joo where this happens ? I thought that was rather funny.[/OT]

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PostPosted: Mon Mar 12, 2007 1:56 pm 
I agree with cydonia,
unlearning bad technique is very difficult. I'd almost rather my students not practice at all than practice the wrong way. It's hard to "undo."
Less tension in your hand is what it comes down to.


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PostPosted: Wed Mar 14, 2007 10:30 pm 
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[ ."
Less tension in your hand is what it comes down to.[/quote]

Very good point. Less tension. and does not mean NO TENSION.---


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PostPosted: Fri Mar 16, 2007 5:32 pm 
hello everybody thanks for all your replies.

i appreciate

but still i have a problem about many fast chromatic octaves....


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PostPosted: Sun Mar 18, 2007 6:08 pm 
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Stephen Farrugia wrote:
hello everybody thanks for all your replies.

i appreciate

but still i have a problem about many fast chromatic octaves....


here you go, playing 4,5,4,5,4,5,fingers....for a while and perhaps for few years and treated as a dessert for every practice session-including other major works.

and good luck, by all mean dnt injur your fingers..


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PostPosted: Mon Mar 19, 2007 9:34 am 
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johnmar78 wrote:
here you go, playing 4,5,4,5,4,5,fingers....for a while and perhaps for few years and treated as a dessert for every practice session-including other major works.


I disagree - I don't play chromatic octave runs with strict alternating fingers 4 and 5. Because it is not ergonomic to use the 5th finger on a black key and the 4th finger on a white key what would happen this way. Instead, as others wrote already, use the finger 4 for black keys and finger 5 for white keys. Or better, if you have large hands, use also finger 3. E.g., right hand starting from c to the next higher octave: c: 5, c#:4, then 5,3,4,5,4,5,4,5,3,4,5 (next c). This way a lovely legato is possible (unfortunately not for the other notes played with the thumb), and with time it can get very fast too without creating unnecessary tension in the wrist.

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PostPosted: Mon Mar 19, 2007 6:35 pm 
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MindenBlues wrote:
johnmar78 wrote:
here you go, playing 4,5,4,5,4,5,fingers....for a while and perhaps for few years and treated as a dessert for every practice session-including other major works.


I disagree - I don't play chromatic octave runs with strict alternating fingers 4 and 5. Because it is not ergonomic to use the 5th finger on a black key and the 4th finger on a white key what would happen this way. Instead, as others wrote already, use the finger 4 for black keys and finger 5 for white keys. Or better, if you have large hands, use also finger 3. E.g., right hand starting from c to the next higher octave: c: 5, c#:4, then 5,3,4,5,4,5,4,5,3,4,5 (next c). This way a lovely legato is possible (unfortunately not for the other notes played with the thumb), and with time it can get very fast too without creating unnecessary tension in the wrist.



sorry :oops: Olaf, that was my oversight...4ths on black key only, 5 on white keys eg b and c;e and f.


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