Violin Tips: Stiff Shoulders and Arm Pain

violin techniquePlaying the violin should be fun – not a pain! Some arm fatigue is normal when you’re first starting out, but anything more than that may be a sign of poor posture, technique or instrument placement. Here are a few things to keep in mind as you practice and play…

1. Relax.

Many beginner players tense up their shoulders, arms or wrist without even realizing it, which can cause a lot of problems. Just relax! Focus on your breathing, but also don’t lose your posture.

2. Check your technique.

Improper bowing technique can also lead to tension. Your teacher should notice this right away if you’re holding the violin incorrectly. When you’re practicing at home, take a look in the mirror as you position yourself.

3. Scale back your practice time.

As you practice, your muscles are learning new movements – and similar to any exercise you might try at the gym, it takes time for your body to get used to it. In the meantime: Although it’s awesome if you feel motivated enough to practice for hours, it’s OK to limit your practice time. Stretching and warm-up exercises can also help.

Playing the violin shouldn’t hurt. Most of all, don’t force yourself to play through any pain. You don’t want to cause any unnecessary injuries!


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