Do you suffer from playing-related neck or shoulder pain? Read on to learn how a high chin-rest can help!
Scroll to bottom of page and click images to order
Having seen many of our customers suffer playing related injuries we believe it is important to promote knowledge about staying healthy as a musician.
Athletes spend a significant amount of time conditioning their bodies for performance and success, and injuries are not only actively treated but prevented. The increasingly popular "musician as an athlete" philosophy is leading many musicians to approach their discipline in a similar manner, enabling many to overcome pain and resolve issues with technique.
Maintaining mobility and flexibility, and developing greater awareness and coordination through use of methods like the Alexander Technique are highly recommended, but one often overlooked aspect of enhancing performance and health is ensuring that your instrument is fitted with the optimal chin-rest and shoulder-rest. Many musicians select chin-rests based on the recommendations of their teacher or peers, or use the chin-rest that was sold with the instrument. However, ill-fitting rests can result in displacement of the neck and skull over time, resulting in pain and muscular imbalance. Whilst problems can seem minor initially, over years the results of allowing problems to go unchecked can result in needing to take time off work, surgery, or in rare cases, the end of a career as a musician.
We are pleased to announce we now offer taller versions of many popular chin-rests, which can greatly alleviate pain and discomfort in players with longer necks. Click images at bottom of page to order.
Musicians with longer necks are most vulnerable to the problems caused by ill-fitting rests. Some teachers subscribe to the view that players shouldn't use shoulder -rests; a player with a long neck may benefit from a higher chin-rest when playing without a shoulder-rest. Even amongst players who already use shoulder-rests, for some the additional height provided by a raised chin-rest can result in improved alignment of the head, neck, and shoulders, which can prevent the muscles, ligaments and joints from strain.
Aside from avoiding pain, changing your chin-rest can improve technical ability significantly. The site Violinist In Balance details the link between ill fitting chin and shoulder rests and technical difficulty. It provides plenty of ideas on how to optimise your set-up.
- As choosing a rest is a highly individual process, for anyone able to travel to Cardiff, we recommend booking an appointment to try various rests in order to make the best choice. Appointments cost £20 for the first half hour, and £10 for each following half hour. Please call 029 20 22 77 61 to book yours.
Trial box scheme: 6 high violin chin-rests or 6 high viola chin-rests
If you are unable to visit us we offer a chin-rest trial box scheme. Order up to 6 high chin-rests (selected from the ones listed below - Rounded Flesch, Teka, SAS, Ohrenform, Guarneri, Flesch & Cardiff Violins) which you will receive by post. All chin-rests sent back to us will be refunded. Postage costs won't be refunded, however they are significantly less than travel to and parking in Cardiff!
We also recommend trying out the GelRest, which has been successfully used by many players to eliminate pain and reduce fiddler's neck. Playing related pain is a complex issue, as a problem in one area is often transferred to another. However if your problem stems from the jaw/neck area then the Gel Rest may help. Click here to learn more and order!