Marching Performer Mindset

Often overlooked is one CRUCIAL topic on getting to that World Class level:  Marching Performer Mindset

One of the main and crucial subjects that always needs to be addressed is the subject of Marching Performer Mindset.

What really separates the amateurs from the pros or first place from 4th place is the marching performer mindset – without question.

As we progress in the activity, we tend to get distracted after reaching a few of our goals, or thinking we’ve mastered our foundation skills and eventually getting comfortable.

Daily, I get emailed or called and asked:

“How do I take my performance or drumming to the next level?” and always I reply,

“Why do you think you deserve to be at the next level? What makes you think you want the next level?”

The question isn’t meant to degrade the performer or look down on their ability but more as a question to review one’s self.  And what I’m referring to when I reply is simply that the performer’s that are at the high level or are pushing the envelope have a thriving and persevering marching performer mindset.  An unstoppable, thirst to constantly push themselves no matter what and never get comfortable.  The view on their performance entirely.

Get what I mean when I address Marching Performer Mindset?

However, and UNFORTUNATELY, this topic almost seems RARE and too often members aren’t even asked to program or address their mindset at all.  I mean, do you really just wake up everyday and WAIT for things to magically get done or rehearse and magically get great?

Really, My question to YOU now, is what is YOU marching performer mindset sound like?  Say if you described how you thought about practice schedule, rehearsal etiquette, technique implementation, sound quality and so on.

Daily, how important are all of these to you?  How important is it to practice and gain points over your competitor?

What does it mean for YOUR group to win?  How well do YOU act when you rehearse?

What is your overall picture and definition for YOU marching performer mindset?

The other day, I heard a comedian talk about what makes a professional at something and he went on to say that everyone can have a talent.  Anyone.  But it’s that individual that is constantly working at their profession that makes them a professional at something.

Quick example, that ever-driven basketball player we ALL know (could be any sport really). Days before a game – practices, game day – practices, warm-up at the game – practices – after the game – practices.  Just that constant push to improve all areas of their gig.

Not allowing weakness in some areas.  Not making excuses.  Not complaining that it’s a hot day, and on tour, and stuck in some city high school with unclear water and thick grass.

Now, don’t get me wrong, I definitely believe we all need time to relax, recover, take time for family/friends, work, or just fun.  We all need that.  :)

But what I am trying to get at is a drumline Performer or any Performer at a high level is always thinking,

Is what I’m doing improving my skill and progressing me to reach my goals?  How do I one up myself from here?

That should be your daily marching performer mindset and motivation to always take things to the next level.

Utilizing your time efficiently and effectively to get to your goals faster and faster and then create new goals.

I, as well as many great players that I’ve been fortunate to have played with, always  had strong mindset and led by example.  A member with strong marching performer mindset continues to push themselves day in and day out without being asked.  Taking the initiative to take their performance through the charts.

Even when I made the groups of my dreams, I never let my marching performer mindset relax or get comfortable. I was ever going multitasker –  still looking down every now and then, making sure I was playing in the center of the drum, my sticks were moving straight up and down, how relaxed my shoulders were when I moved, how my face looked when I performed.

NEVER going on autopilot.  Always looking for improvement.  Motivated or tired, always attempting to take it to that next level.

 My last question for you is how can you shape and improve YOUR marching performer mindset to grow and take YOUR performance to the next level?

  • Are YOU going to set specific goals for everything you want to accomplish individually?
  • What do YOU want to achieve and take YOUR group every season?
  • What YOU want the CROWD to feel every time you perform?

It all comes down to your marching performer mindset.

Sure – you could just get by, rehearse like a normal rehearsal, peck on a pad at home – call it practice and give a mediocre show.  Or you can have the best hands, DOMINATE your competitors and be a crowd favorite.

Like I said, ultimately comes down to that marching performer mindset.  Always comes down to inside the mind of the individual.

And hey, push yourself today, really dig down deep about how you view your performance and how you’re going to MAKE it grow. Most times, the only motivation that you can ever rely on is your own. :)

Dedicated to fine tuning your marching performer mindset,

Anthony Huerta, DCI-WC HP