Art of Practicing: part 4: More Extreme Conditioning
One of the ways I push myself to the extreme limits of my ability is to play as fast as I can (or can't). I don't do this often. Back in the ol' college days, I was taught that playing very slowly was the best practice technique there was, and certainly there is no substitute for allowing the brain to absorb loads of information at slow tempi. But there are times when pushing my tempo to the very threshold of manageability serves a purpose. I realize that I have forced something out of myself, begged a particular left hand/right hand communication, and challenged myself to fly out of my comfort zone. And in the end, when I ultimately crash and burn I find that I even had fun.