2. Describing the problem

I always knew that I had problems with the position of my body while playing the violin. It was the first thing teachers noticed in master classes and seminars. But unfortunately no one could tell me the source of my problems or what to do to solve them. Over the years I began to think that there must be something wrong with me, perhaps with my spine.

The wrong position of my body caused a lot of tension in my neck, resulting in pain in my back, hands and arms. When I played in orchestra the pain was sometimes so bad that I was dizzy and felt I couldn't stand it any more! The pain was concentrated around the right shoulder blade. When I played alone standing up it was much easier, perhaps because I could move around.

One of the biggest problems in my playing technique was that I couldn't reach the tip of the bow, which caused an imbalance in my bow stroke and decreased my sound. We found out that this was because my chin rest was positioned to the left of the tailpiece, which put the violin too far to the left for the length of my arms.

A second problem was that my shoulder rest was very big, blocking the freedom of the left hand so that my fingering hand felt cramped all the time. Since my shoulder was blocked, my arm was effectively shortened, making difficult all techniques in which I had to open my hand. For instance, I couldn't stretch my hand to reach the interval of a 10 th . The result of this situation was tension in my whole body. I spent many extra hours practicing the same passages over and over, without knowing why it didn't get any better.

Now the pains are gone. I can bow easily to the tip, and I can play tenths without any trouble. The changes in my equipment and playing style during the research brought the violin in line with my arms so that I can use them naturally. Now I know that there is nothing wrong with my spine!


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