Who uses a shoulder rest and who doesn’t?

Online Fiddle Lessons Forums What else is on your mind? Who uses a shoulder rest and who doesn’t?


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    I have a shoulder rest but it seems to put the fiddle in a ” strange ” location and I have a lot of trouble when trying to play the G stingĀ  . Seems to sound better without a shoulder rest too . With several bad disc in my neck I can’t play too long unless I cheat and use my hand to help hold up the fiddle . May try and get to the shop during winter and make a custom tall chin rest and see how that works .


    Yeah, I certainly need a shoulder rest.

    When I first took up the violin about a year ago (in my 66 year old body), with playing my new instrument, I started developing bad shooting pain in the neck that shot into my head and even ears making me think I had tinitus. To this day I have a bit of a bulge in the neck muscle on my left side. But it’s no longer a pain problem because:

    1) I got a pretty fair neck brace (KUN) and for more lift I also rolled a dish towel fastening it with a shoelace for a better angle. (I don’t need the towel so much anymore).

    2) I got a raised chin rest which helps.

    3) I have trained myself to relax and not clench up when I play something as fast as possible. Holding that tension for prolonged periods was a bad thing and probably at the root of the problem for me. (Imagine playing a fast video game that you just have to win where you have to peel your hand away from the controller afterward. Now imagine that happening to your head. . . yeesh. I almost gave it up.)

    I guess I must have a long neck. That’s what the YouTube videos produced by people selling shoulder rests seem to point to. And I think it’s probably right.

    On a related topic, I also bought a 16.5 viola to see if my canary in a coal mine of a wife could handle those top end pitches better than a violin. When she keels over I know I need to put a couple doors between us.

    The viola was more of a challenge holding it in place because it’s bigger and heavier = more unwieldy. For that I had to try one of the biggest flexible shoulder rests = Wolf Forte Secondo. It’s pretty amazing and it works great for holding in place that piece of furniture while I fiddle about with it. (while I viola about with it?)

    Anyway I do use a shoulder rest and could not play without one (or something to help hold the position) in either case.



    • This reply was modified 4 days, 11 hours ago by Avatargoneworkin.
    • This reply was modified 4 days, 11 hours ago by Avatargoneworkin.

    I use shoulder rests for school because they are required, but at home when I’m practicing, I take it off. Shoulder rests are really uncomfortable to me, even the ones that are meant for comfortable playing.

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