Clarinet Notes

Odds and ends of clarinet tech and training

TPTV – Arnold Jacobs: Using Too Little Air & Development of Habits


Mr. Jacobs discusses the perils of playing with too little air. When playing in the negative portion of the respiratory curve, it becomes increasingly difficult to expel the air; the air velocity decreases while the work effort increases. The respiratory system’s muscular contraction effort begins to increase as the amount of air in the lungs decreases. Jacobs also talks about the challenges of automatic responses of tactile stimulus in developing new habits. One cannot break an old habit (conditioned response), but a new, better habit can be developed to by-pass the undesired habit. Jacobs also talks about the older pedagogy of “tight gut” and how that does not allow full use of one’s lung capacity.


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