Hand awareness / warm-up I

Dr. Wolff - Hand and Finger Awareness for Musicians

A great way to increase awarness of your hand: Get to know your core structures: knuckles as the primary support and finger joints - and not to forget - your finger tips. Let your awareness float between structures and feel at ease...

1. Rest your elbows on your thighs or a table top. Let your hands move towards each other, so that your finger tips touch each other

2. Focus successively on finger pairs: 1 & 2, 1 & 3, 1 & 4, 1 & 5 - each of the pairs forming the letter C (or a reversed C in your right hand).

3. Gently push the tips of each pair against each other and let your awareness travel through each finger - from tip to knuckel - over the first web space to the thumb. You can now feel how the finger is rooted in your knuckel and can be supported. You also feel what each joint contributes to the stability. No joint should ever collapse or be loaded too much.

4. You can do that with pairs seperately or start adding pairs to the first pair, until you have a beautifully shaped hand with all finger tips touching each other. From this point, we can introduce some slight strengthening (coming tomorrow!).

P.S. You can travel as deep into the hands as you wish: ask questions like
How many cells of each finger tip touch each other? Is it exactly the same place of each finger where they meet? Is one finger stronger than its counterpart? Does one finger feel more secure than its opposite? Can you feel the connection better/worse in a certain pair? ... Then start asking your own questions!

Use it as a prior-to-stage focussing routine to ease unwanted tension, to increase activity in both motor and sensory areas in your brain, to channel awareness off the outside - towards your center and the structures that are about to be involved. Envision the piece being securely settled in your hands and brain (surrounded by the two touching Cs). Color the exercise with the musical intentions of your first piece - sink in and get ready to enjoy!