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Hanon and Czerny useless? (Read 20246 times)

Offline keyb0ardfweak

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Hanon and Czerny useless?
« on: April 26, 2008, 08:13:24 AM »
I just got to read on the internet that this exercises are good to develop the strenght of the fingers, which is good for beginner pianists and or amateur ones, cuz normally the strenght is greater in the thumb and in the index finger.

However, it said that this exercises are useless because each individual finger has its own strenght limit, which cannot be changed, so it may also be a waste of time for some people.
In my case, I just stoped playing hanon exercises cuz I was realising that I was getting nothing from it, that's why now I'm currently workin hard on scales and arpeggios, besides the other pieces I'm learning.

so what's your opinion??I'm totally agree with what it said.
“If you always do what you’ve always done, you’ll always get what you’ve always got.” Henry Ford

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Hanon: The Virtuoso Pianist Part 1 (1-20)
piano sheet music of The Virtuoso Pianist Part 1 (1-20)


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Czerny: 50 Little Studies
piano sheet music of 50 Little Studies


Offline hyrst

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Re: Hanon and Czerny useless?
«Reply #1 on: April 26, 2008, 08:52:59 AM »
I love Czerny's work.  Even the smallest exercises are quite beautiful and techincally full etudes for the appropriate levels. IMO

Czerny and Hanon are completely different composers and material.  I think Hanon is quite useful, but you need to know how to use it properly.  It isn't about building finger strength.  You must listen carefully and develop your sense of touch.

Offline gyzzzmo

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Re: Hanon and Czerny useless?
«Reply #2 on: April 26, 2008, 10:07:39 AM »
I just got to read on the internet that this exercises are good to develop the strenght of the fingers, which is good for beginner pianists and or amateur ones, cuz normally the strenght is greater in the thumb and in the index finger.

However, it said that this exercises are useless because each individual finger has its own strenght limit, which cannot be changed, so it may also be a waste of time for some people.
In my case, I just stoped playing hanon exercises cuz I was realising that I was getting nothing from it, that's why now I'm currently workin hard on scales and arpeggios, besides the other pieces I'm learning.

so what's your opinion??I'm totally agree with what it said.

So many threads about Hanon and Czerny :p
Please search the forum on the word 'Hanon' and you'll get all the opinions and tips and other stuff about it.

gyzzzmo
1+1=11

Offline ramseytheii

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Re: Hanon and Czerny useless?
«Reply #3 on: April 26, 2008, 12:09:13 PM »
You should also do an advanced search on posts with the keyword "Hanon" by user "Bernhard," because he had a lot to say about the subject.

Be careful with encountering nihilist posts which convince you to change your mind without foundation.  I am generally opposed to Hanon, but the fact is it provides a very clear direction and sense of accomplishment for people who aren't sure what other paths are available.

Don't reject something unless you have a back-up plan, in other words.  So many people tear down Hanon and say it's terrible, and don't ever give a viable alternative for a beginner who wants the experience of moving the fingers, getting a workout and reading a lot of dense-looking music, which Hanon frankly provides. 

Walter Ramsey



Offline allthumbs

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Re: Hanon and Czerny useless?
«Reply #4 on: April 26, 2008, 04:30:10 PM »
I agree with what both hyrst and ramseytheii had to say. Hanon along with ather such exercises such as Pischna are useful if you have a specific purpose for their inclusion in your daily practice.

I recall a time when I had difficulty co-ordinating my 4th and 5th fingers which were also very weak and I found that a specific couple of exercises from Pischna (and Hanon as well) were of benefit in overcoming the problem.

It goes without saying that playing Bach, Czerny etc. will improve technique and is more musical, however I feel you'd have to play alot of this music compared to one or two specific exercises targeting a problem area.

Personally, I no longer do Hanon or any other exercises other than reviewing technical requirements for RCM grades such as scales, arpeggios, etc. from time to time.

Regards,

allthumbs
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Offline keyb0ardfweak

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Re: Hanon and Czerny useless?
«Reply #5 on: April 26, 2008, 07:21:24 PM »
ok so from what all of you are saying I'm thinking on playing agn hanon exercises..if it's really usefull so I'll do it, cuz I just bought the book in january and stopped using it since the end of march..

so I'd better do it..cuz I also had some problems inthe past with the 4th finger, which some of this exercises helped me..

but still...surely someone doesn't agree with this..=S

I'm really confused.. ???is the problem of having no reference to correct me.. :'(

anyway..I'd better go back to part 2!!=P
“If you always do what you’ve always done, you’ll always get what you’ve always got.” Henry Ford

Offline dnephi

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Re: Hanon and Czerny useless?
«Reply #6 on: April 27, 2008, 02:35:07 AM »
I've found Czerny to be exceptionally valuable.
For us musicians, the music of Beethoven is the pillar of fire and cloud of mist which guided the Israelites through the desert.  (Roughly quoted, Franz Liszt.)

Offline phannt

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Re: Hanon and Czerny useless?
«Reply #7 on: April 27, 2008, 04:23:29 AM »
In fact, I'm not a good pianist to judge Hanon and Czerny. But I want to tell you a story.
I'm sure you all know about Jean-Yves Thibaudet, a very famous pianist. Two years ago, he came to Vietnam. A day before his performance, he asked our conservatory to practise on a piano. Of course, we-student came there and hoped to be the first to enjoy his performance. But, to our suprise, he played through the "Hanon" slowly for about 45 minutes. After finishing that, he played it again with fast speed! When we asked him, he said that Hanon's his daily exercise, just like a meal.
So, what do you think about that?

Offline slobone

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Re: Hanon and Czerny useless?
«Reply #8 on: April 27, 2008, 11:41:35 PM »
So many threads about Hanon and Czerny :p
Please search the forum on the word 'Hanon' and you'll get all the opinions and tips and other stuff about it.

gyzzzmo

Better search for Hannon too cause that's how about half the people spell it  :P

Offline rc

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Re: Hanon and Czerny useless?
«Reply #9 on: April 28, 2008, 03:22:41 AM »
I've begun working through the Hanon exercises a while back.  My reasons:

1.  My lifestyle is a bit too busy right now for much performing, and it's demotivating for me to learn repertoire only to forget it afterwards because I'm not playing it for anyone.  So I've decided to spend more time on exercises because I have no qualms with learning them then forgetting about it.

2.  Getting Hanon up to speed is a challenge for me, so I figure there's something I can learn from it.  Then I suppose a further challenge would be to play them in all keys.  Somebody who could do that must be very comfortable in any key.

An idea I recently came across in a Bacon essay is to have intermissions in practice habits, to give it a bit of time to sink in and also to come back to it fresh and help avoid practicing mistakes that might have crept in.  So I could go through a scale and arpeggio regimen for a couple of months then not touch scales/arps for a week or two before continuing...  Bring everything up to a certain standard, then do something else for a bit before taking it to the next level.

Offline slobone

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Re: Hanon and Czerny useless?
«Reply #10 on: April 28, 2008, 07:41:28 PM »
There are two main advantages to Hanon (I'm talking about #1-30 here):

1) It takes zero time to learn them, so you don't have to devote any attention to worrying about what note is coming next. You can concentrate on what your doing with your fingers, wrists and arms.

2) They exercise left and right hands equally, especially the 3rd, 4th, and 5th fingers.

Neither of these applies to Czerny, so I don't put him in the same category.

The disadvantage of Hanon, of course, is that it only covers a very limited range of keyboard techniques, makes the fingers do all the work, and, allegedly,  could even injure you if you overdo them. BUT -- it seems to me you'd have to spend a hell of a lot of time playing them very fast for that to happen.

And by the way -- this criticism that they're useless because you'll never succeed in making the fingers equally strong -- I've seen that here before, and it doesn't make any sense to me. The whole point of Hanon is to strengthen your weakest fingers, which nearly always benefit from it. So what if they're ultimately still not as strong as 1 and 2? They need all the help they can get.

I find in particular that my Bach is much improved since I started running through Hanon 1-20 every day.

Offline gyzzzmo

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Re: Hanon and Czerny useless?
«Reply #11 on: April 29, 2008, 08:16:54 AM »
Hanon is far too boring for me, and boredom usually leads to ineffective training since piano training is a 'mind-job'.
So i switched to chopin etude 10/2 for those terrible 3-4-5 fingers of the right hand, worked much better for me.
1+1=11

Offline keyb0ardfweak

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Re: Hanon and Czerny useless?
«Reply #12 on: April 29, 2008, 12:15:48 PM »
There are two main advantages to Hanon (I'm talking about #1-30 here):

1) It takes zero time to learn them, so you don't have to devote any attention to worrying about what note is coming next. You can concentrate on what your doing with your fingers, wrists and arms.

2) They exercise left and right hands equally, especially the 3rd, 4th, and 5th fingers.

Neither of these applies to Czerny, so I don't put him in the same category.

The disadvantage of Hanon, of course, is that it only covers a very limited range of keyboard techniques, makes the fingers do all the work, and, allegedly,  could even injure you if you overdo them. BUT -- it seems to me you'd have to spend a hell of a lot of time playing them very fast for that to happen.

And by the way -- this criticism that they're useless because you'll never succeed in making the fingers equally strong -- I've seen that here before, and it doesn't make any sense to me. The whole point of Hanon is to strengthen your weakest fingers, which nearly always benefit from it. So what if they're ultimately still not as strong as 1 and 2? They need all the help they can get.

I find in particular that my Bach is much improved since I started running through Hanon 1-20 every day.


ok...as I read what you wrote, I agree in some parts, like when you said that this exercises strenghten the 3, 4, 5 fingers to be more strong..

but still, there are other ways to strenghten them

in my case, I was practicing this exercises and got stucked in the exercise 5 and 6 and could not advance, the problem was my 4th finger. Actually, this was by january.
So, what I did is to go to the conservatory in search for a friend of mine that is very at playing piano. He told me that the book is only usefull from the part of scales to the end. My main problem with my 4th finger has been solved by doing what he told me to do: hitting the keys all the strong I could doing the scales, and yes, it worked(sorry for my bad english.. :P)

Since then I was able to play this exercises till exercise 20(part 2)
He never attempted to play any of this exercises and he's really good. So maybe I could still play "good" without doing this exercises...ryt....?

And finally, as gyzzzmo said, the etude of chopin is working great for him, and I suppose he does not play hanon cuz he says it's boring..xD


“If you always do what you’ve always done, you’ll always get what you’ve always got.” Henry Ford

Offline mmro

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Re: Hanon and Czerny useless?
«Reply #13 on: April 30, 2008, 01:58:13 AM »
I really don't like Hanon... It happened to me, I didn't notice any big improvements with them.

But Czerny is a different story! Those excersizes are great! And the results are inmediate.  I improved by huge steps with it, specially with the school of velocity. It gives you so much dexterity They prepare you for Mozskowsky and Chopin etudes

Offline keyb0ardfweak

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Re: Hanon and Czerny useless?
«Reply #14 on: April 30, 2008, 12:11:00 PM »
I see...

but I read also that Chopin said to his pupils to study also Clementi's Gradus ad Parnasum..I got to see some exercises and they are a bit advanced for me..xD

However..I think I'll stick to Hanon again and see if I improve on something, if not, I'll try Czerny and Bach. But definetly I think I need Bach, as someone said, it gives you more technique.
“If you always do what you’ve always done, you’ll always get what you’ve always got.” Henry Ford

Offline mobydick

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Re: Hanon and Czerny useless?
«Reply #15 on: May 21, 2012, 04:10:54 PM »

Hi, I did a test on Hanon. My previous teacher was a bit of an idiot and she gave me that to play but I thought it was doing nothing. In fact she gave me only a couple of beginners exercises that I didn't need so. Now I tried practicing Hanon vol 1 (the whole thing) for one week every day (about an hour each). I was doing czerny school of velocity but was unable to play really quick, and I dropped Czerny during that week. My wrists and fingers went tense and in pain due to hanon and it was boring.

Because I started getting back pain I stopped Hanon after that week. Then I decided to go back to Czerny. And guess what? My fingers just flew over Czerny 1 and 2 like never before. I couldn't believe it, I never played so fast for a piece ever before in my life and only in 1 week.

Conclusion? It looks like it worked for me, but I recon you have to put those fingers under pressure or it won't work. You have to increase the speed and play as they say very clearly and force their movements even if they're tense.

Offline krajcher

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Re: Hanon and Czerny useless?
«Reply #16 on: May 21, 2012, 06:24:00 PM »
Because I started getting back pain I stopped Hanon after that week. Then I decided to go back to Czerny. And guess what? My fingers just flew over Czerny 1 and 2 like never before. I couldn't believe it, I never played so fast for a piece ever before in my life and only in 1 week.

Most people don't have such an effects like you; Hanon discourage people to play piano.


Offline slobone

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Re: Hanon and Czerny useless?
«Reply #17 on: November 10, 2012, 12:23:55 AM »
Hi, I did a test on Hanon. My previous teacher was a bit of an idiot and she gave me that to play but I thought it was doing nothing. In fact she gave me only a couple of beginners exercises that I didn't need so. Now I tried practicing Hanon vol 1 (the whole thing) for one week every day (about an hour each). I was doing czerny school of velocity but was unable to play really quick, and I dropped Czerny during that week. My wrists and fingers went tense and in pain due to hanon and it was boring.

Because I started getting back pain I stopped Hanon after that week. Then I decided to go back to Czerny. And guess what? My fingers just flew over Czerny 1 and 2 like never before. I couldn't believe it, I never played so fast for a piece ever before in my life and only in 1 week.

Conclusion? It looks like it worked for me, but I recon you have to put those fingers under pressure or it won't work. You have to increase the speed and play as they say very clearly and force their movements even if they're tense.
If you're getting pain anywhere while practicing Hanon or anything else you're doing something wrong. If you keep doing it, you could be letting yourself in for permanent damage. I strongly recommend you find a teacher who can show you how to play so that it doesn't happen.

And while I like Hanon, I don't expect anyone else to agree with me.  I realize his exercises are boring, but I like boring exercises. I also do Schmitt and Dohnanyi, not to mention scales and arpeggios. Even Slonimsky. It gives my fingers something to do while I'm waiting for my brain to kick in.

Offline hfmadopter

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Re: Hanon and Czerny useless?
«Reply #18 on: November 10, 2012, 10:03:37 AM »


Conclusion? It looks like it worked for me, but I recon you have to put those fingers under pressure or it won't work. You have to increase the speed and play as they say very clearly and force their movements even if they're tense.

 You should find a way to relax your hands and fingers in an exercise not tense them up ( I'm a great one to talk, I often have trouble finding that way myself but I do try and mostly succeed). For instance, dropping from the wrist which takes a minimum amount of muscle effort in your fingers and back of the hands. What you are doing is inefficient and bad for your hands and apparently your back as well. Way too much tension. You're going to end up all knotted up going about things the way you describe.

I'm not picking on you ! I just feel what you are doing is incorrect and ultimately damaging.. Be careful and look into some new technique for yourself. People here have hurt themselves and had to take weeks and even months off from the piano by using incorrect technique with hurt muscles and or tendons. Just a heads up !
Depressing the pedal on an out of tune acoustic piano and playing does not result in tonal color control or add interest, it's called obnoxious.

Offline brogers70

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Re: Hanon and Czerny useless?
«Reply #19 on: November 10, 2012, 01:15:15 PM »
I played a lot of Hanon when I started. If my wife had divorced me, as she seemed likely to after hearing endless hours of Hanon echoing through the house, I might have had even more time to practice - so Hanon might have been able to improve my technique, if I'd just pushed it a little farther.

Seriously, though, I waver on Hanon and similar exercises. Mostly, I think it's better to learn techniques from the pieces in which they are required. But sometimes, if my teacher points out something about my posture, or relaxation, or "weight", then it's sometimes useful to play something as simple as Hanon or scales in order to focus entirely on whatever physical thing I want to focus on. I'm pretty sure, though, that just turning off the brain and doing hours of Hanon while you read a book, as though it were weight-lifting or aerobics, won't do much good.

Offline slobone

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Re: Hanon and Czerny useless?
«Reply #20 on: November 10, 2012, 09:11:26 PM »
I was half kidding about not using my brain to play Hanon, but I don't think anybody can deny that there are parts of the brain that just aren't needed. Even the simplest Mozart piece takes more concentration on creating a musical sound. Hanon isn't music, it's just finger exercises. Which doesn't meant there isn't a right way and a wrong to play it.

And I certainly would never recommend anybody to spend hours a day on Hanon. i do maybe 20 minutes at most. But then I usually go on to do other exercises, scales and arpeggios in all keys, scales in thirds and sixths, some stuff I made up, etc.

Piano playing has an athletic side to it, and most athletes do some form of exercise that isn't directly related to their sport. Football players don't just throw passes for practice, they go the gym and lift weights etc. That's what Hanon is to me.