Practicing with the metronome can be tricky. When we are already having to think about the notes, fingers, dynamics, technique, it can be difficult to add another element to the practice session. Practicing with the metronome is one of the best things you can do for your playing. It not only keeps our internal rhythm in check, but it can allow us the freedom to focus on other aspects of our playing: phrasing, accents, technique, etc.
I will guide you through the basics on playing with a metronome so you are able to focus on the bigger picture: making music!
Your biggest asset is your ears. Before you play any exercise, hear the clicks, feel the beat, before your proceed. If you are making several mistakes while playing any passage of music, you are most likely practicing it too fast. Slow down to allow time to process all the information.
See the following pictures below. If you want to download the PDF of the pictures below to print and follow along at your instrument, please click the following link:
A note of caution. If you are new to the metronome world, and are looking for one, choose THIS metronome. It is the best metronome one can purchase, especially when the budget is in mind. If you can pay a few extra bucks, choose THIS metronome. There isn’t much difference between the two. I personally have had the former metronome for over 20 years and love it. Yes, it’s held together by a rubber band now, but 20 years isn’t bad! The note of caution is to keep you away from the metronomes that you must wind up, like THIS one. Yes, it doesn’t need batteries, but here’s why you don’t want to buy it. Because it is wind-up, towards the end of it’s life, it needs to be wound up again, thus creating the tempo to fluctuate and not be precise. When we’re talking music, precision of timing is everything.