Letting the handstrokes ring themselves

On Monday we made some more progress with what is becoming our regular 10-bell band, with a peal of Cambridge Royal. We rang Jonathan's new bells, so they have now been properly christened. The peal wasn't perfect by any means, and the speed was a little variable, but it held together well and we were all pleased with it.

Afterwards, Nick commented that in right-place methods, every handstroke change is the same in the sense that it is always one change of plain hunting; it's only the backstrokes that define the method, with place-making and dodging. In his view, the key to ringing with less intensive mental effort is to develop the skill of ringing the handstrokes automatically and only thinking about the backstrokes. I think he's right, although it's difficult to analyse one's own thought processes while ringing. It's a particular example of a general principle that we should try to ring as much of the method as possible without too much thought, and ration out our concentration for the times when it's really needed. For example, Cambridge Royal contains a lot of treble bob hunting, which should also be rung without much conscious thought. These ideas are especially important for peal-ringing, as it's difficult to concentrate at full steam for an entire peal.

Naturally, the only way to develop these skills and techniques is by lots of practice, so we're going to ring another peal of Cambridge next month before trying something different later.

Scottish Association
1 Albany Quadrant
Monday 10 June 2013 in 2h53 (15C)
5040 Cambridge Surprise Royal
Composed: CUG Collective
1-2   Angela H Deakin
3-4   Tina R Stoecklin
5-6   Nicholas W Jones
7-8   Jonathan S Frye
9-10   Simon J Gay (C)
First on 10 in hand, and 50th peal: 1-2.
First of Surprise Royal in hand: 7-8.
First peal on the bells.