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Today I want to make my case for video recording your practice sessions to analyze them. I know it can be very humbling to see all of your flaws, but there’s some real benefits to doing this. By analyzing your practice sessions while you’re not mentally and physically concentrating, you’re more free to see and critique how things actually went. You may find that the things you thought didn’t sound so good, actually do or vice versa. That can show you what needs more attention and can help shape how your future practicing goes.

You also can realize things you don’t catch when you’re in the act of practicing, things like posture, stick height, or even the look your face makes when you’re concentrating.

Recording yourself is also a great way to track progress over time. If you record the exercises you work on consistently, this can give you the confidence in general that the time you’re putting into your practicing is effective. And I know we’re talking about things that need improving, but it’s also worth noting the things that you do well in your practice time.

If you’re not used to playing live in front of people, recording yourself can ease you into it knowing that you’re performing for the camera. In fact, when you first record yourself, you may find that you’re hesitant about what you’re doing and it makes you focus, which is a good thing and you can see and work on how you would actually look and sound in front of an audience.

It’s fine to record just specific exercises, but it can also be good to record your full practice session. Analyzing a full session helps you to spot flaws in your overall practice habits, like when you’re repeating something too many times that already sounds good instead of isolating the parts that need more work. And it can also point out if you’re wasting time in general.

So that’s my case for recording and analyzing your practice sessions. You get confidence and motivation that comes from seeing concrete evidence of daily, weekly, and monthly progress.

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