The Flute Academy
The 2 reasons why reading music off a table is bad

The 2 reasons why reading music off a table is bad

Apr 27, 2021

Here are the 2 reasons why reading your flute music off a table is actually really bad for your flute playing!

The 2 reasons why reading music off a table is bad for your flute playing

If you're used to looking down when you're playing the flute and think it's not affecting you, think again...

Spoiler: You'll be finding out (in the video) how it slows down your fingers!

Affects your flute playing when looking down

Okay today, you're going to learn why reading music off a table like this is really bad for your flute playing. This was a question from one of my flute students in my flute academy.

It was such a good question that I wanted to turn it into a video for you as well, because this can help so many people. So many people think that they shouldn't play music off the table because it looks bad. It's got nothing to do with that. It actually makes you play worse and I'll show you why.

Faster flute progress through learning proper technique

So firstly, my name is Jane Cavanagh. I am a flute teacher. I love teaching students like you how to get faster progress through proper technique. Learning proper flute technique is the quickest way to improve because it's the foundations and the grounding of what makes something really work on the flute and make it work well.

So stand by and you will see why this exercise of playing down like this, highlights why proper technique is so important.

That's the number one reason why it playing music off a table? Like this is bad for you flute playing.

Affects your flute playing posture when looking down

Okay. So yeah, it looks bad, but that's not the main reason. It affects your posture. And I don't mean that you look bad. I mean that it affects posture in a way that gives you pain.

So obviously your head is forward like this. Did you know that it is well-known that forward head posture like this causes jaw pain. And that is the worst thing that you could ever want as a flute player. You don't want jaw pain or jaw tension because it, it reduces your ability to be flexible and control your air stream, your high notes  - ruins all of that.

Use a music stand when playing the flute

So you want to avoid this forward neck position or head position at all costs.

The easiest way to do that is to use a music stand. And if you don't have a music stand, put your music up at just below eye height, on a bookshelf on the top of the piano, stick it onto your wall like I do because I don't have a lot of space where I live so I stick my music onto my wall.

That was a little insight there into my practice life. Do you have a music stand? And if you have one and you've got the space, then use it.

Affects the balance of your flute when looking down

The second reason why playing music off a table top like this is bad for you is because it affects the balance of your flute. So obviously when you play like this, your keys are in a certain position.

Now the moment you tip forward like this, it affects the balance of these keys, you know, with gravity. And what it does, it tips your flute forward and it makes your flute feel like it's going to roll forward. And you, whether you know it or not, you will compensate for that.

And you will compensate by gripping onto your flute to stop it rolling.

Slow fingers on the flute due to bad positioning

This is bad for 2 reasons. One, it creates hand tension which causes hand pain and two gripping onto your flute to stop it from rolling is the worst thing you can do for finger speed. It slows down your fingers.

So if you're hanging onto your flute with your hands and your fingers to stop it falling, obviously that's going to slow down your fingers.

So this is a great example of what I mean by faster progress, through proper technique. Who would have thought that looking down at music actually slows down your fingers? But now you know the link, now you know how. 

Power of proper flute technique

So if you're keen to learn more about this power of proper technique, consider joining me in the five day breakthrough.

This is a five day program. And Day one is dedicated to teaching you about the power of proper technique. This is everything from tone, high notes, faster fingers, being able to play longer phrases with less air. I know that sounds very cool and it's easier than you think.

The 5 Day Flute Breakthrough

So come and join me in The 5 Day Breakthrough which is included in The Flute Academy here. Come and have a look what you’ll learn over the five days. It is quite an amazing program.

It teaches you how to bust through or breakthrough flute frustration and uncover the real way to accelerate your progress, which is what I'm all about.. Faster progress through proper technique.

So there you go. You've learned today why reading music off the tabletop is so bad for you and bad for your flute playing easily solved with a music stand or a piece of sticky tape. See you later.

Faster Progress Through Proper Technique ™

Learn how making the right tiny adjustments to your flute playing accelerates your progress.

Come and join Jane in The Flute Academy to transform your flute playing - one clever tweak at a time!

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