Originally Posted by JSTpt1022
For brass players the minimum is 3 hours a day.
Err, not necessarily.
It's worth noting that professional brass players, specifically those in the Chicago Symphony who I have read interviews with, don't practice much at all. They've reached a certain zenith in their playing, and only practice enough to maintain that level. They're simply not going to get much better than they are, so it comes down to maintenance, and learning new material or touching up familiar stuff.
Bud Hirseth, legendary prinicpal trumpet of the CSO, stated he would only practice about an hour a day. Arnold Jacobs was the same way.
But when you're in school, you're trying to learn and improve, so you obviously need to practice beyond the maintenance level. If you're already playing in a bunch of ensembles, and doing sectional work for those, and perhaps gigging a little bit--then 3 hours a day is pushing it, IMO. And if you're at a lib arts college, and not a conservatory, you also have general classes to worry about, papers to write, chapters to read. And you may be working part-time in there too. So it depends on your level of commitment, and how competitive your school is.
I was a trombone music major. I would do a warm-up routine of around 45 minutes, take a short break, then work on my solo lit and ensemble stuff, and each day a "challenge" session where I tackled an especially difficult etude for a while. It often added up to only 1.5 hours, occasionally more, occasionally less. 1.5 hours of focused, productive practice time is so much better than 3 hours of meandering, taking a lot of breaks, "I'm sick of this"-type practicing.
And I did get better. Good enough to have some gigs as a sub with the Glenn Miller Orchestra, and play as a rehearsal substitute with the St. Paul Chamber Orchestra.
Bottom line is, you will find out what works for you one way or another. But don't be scared by talk like "You must practice 4 hours a day and not have friends or a social life if you're going to be any good." That's just not true.