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meghdad Online Confused OP
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...Or any other exercise including 5-finger exercises.

I am asking this because during the last 5 months with my current teacher, he has never asked me to do the exercises in front of him. However, even though I have asked him personally to correct my "possible" mistakes from time to time, I just feel something could be missing using his approach and I might learn bad habits or something, as I do feel quite a bit of tension during the exercises and I do self-checks during my practice sessions but I can't be sure always if my fingers shape for example, are correct or my wrist or waist are in correct position during the various Hanon exercises.

That might sound like some kind of OCD issue (which I do admittedly suffer from) given these are just arguably simple exercises. But still my question is ..well.. as the title says.

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All exercises should be supervised by the teacher. Just practicing exercises without teacher input may be of very little value. There's not much point in practicing something incorrectly. It might be worse than not practicing it at all.

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My teacher is very particular about wrist motion when doing Hanon exercises... there is no way I would have learnt correct technique without her watching me do them in person.

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The Hanon exercises involve repeating the same short phrases in several octaves. The teacher showing a student just 1 octave is enough. The other octaves involve the body tilting to the right but still the same fingerings.

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Actually in this specific case I think it's better if someone checks what you are doing from time to time. I'm not an expert on Hanon, but I injured myself from doing similar excercises with too much tension. So my personal advice would at least be:-
- Check that you are relaxed
- Slow is the key, doing them to fast to early creates tension
- Don't do those excercises from the fingers, rather from the whole are (if that makes sense)

Maybe I'm overly concious of this because I had problems afterwards for quite some time, but I feel those excersices shouldn't be taken lightly. I got the feeling that regular practice of music has way less risk of injuring yourself then doing special excercises.

But again: I'm no teacher and my teacher isn't a fan of non-musical excercises and I injured myself. So lot's of prejudice going on here.

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meghdad Online Confused OP
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Can't fix the title unfortunately, I was tired so. ..

So it seems I need to ask him like every other session to check my Hanon progress or else I'll continue being obsessive over how to sit while going up and down the octaves and the wrist tension and all. This does waste my time, I mean all the self-checks that are not guaranteed to be correct.

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Interesting that you mentioned body tilting, because that's my major problem. It's as if my sides become stiff while tilting to the left (lower octaves) and this makes a bit of tension in my left leg and hand.

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It's a perfectly valid question. Your teacher must supervise your exercises, that's for sure.

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meghdad Online Confused OP
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Never ignore a comment from a Russian on the piano practice. :-p <3

Seriously though, I'll bring it up with him the next session.

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Yes your teacher should see you playing Hanon an
d be teaching you how to play them. When I started Hanon with my teacher many years ago, he was very particular about how I played them using rotation. He would demonstrate and make me keep doing it over and over until I got the movement right.I remember I was thinking to myself why is he being so picky about how I play them. Well after a friend hurt herself and has been dealing with it on and off for many years. I was glad he was so picky.


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I would request my teacher, especially if you are a newbie. Some of the exercises require good arm and body position as well as hand position. Otherwise, you will cause injuries.


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Although avoiding injury is clearly important, I think the main idea is that just playing some exercise without teacher input is often not very beneficial. Just practicing scales endlessly without teacher input before and checkups as the student progresses will often lead to little improvement. Just practicing any technical exercise without knowledge of how to do it correctly can be mostly a waste of time.

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meghdad Online Confused OP
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Yeah. I'm gonna discuss the matter with him today. Thank you for your inputs everyone.

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By the way, do you think this can be considered a symptom of lack of quality of the teacher and that it's possible that other potential "subtle" teachinig-related issues might go unnoticed by a novice like me?

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Originally Posted by meghdad
By the way, do you think this can be considered a symptom of lack of quality of the teacher and that it's possible that other potential "subtle" teachinig-related issues might go unnoticed by a novice like me?

Well, i assume if a teacher gives you some exercices, it would make sense that he checks the results. But it depends what the exercices are and for what purpose they were given. There are potentially other ways to check if you have learned what the subject was.

It all depends what your current level is. At some point, since you dont know what you dont know, you have to trust your teacher. If he is really following your progress properly, he should cross check that you are learning what he wants you to learn.


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