Be wary of anyone who tells you the same thing works for everyone, when it comes to shoulder rests.
Though there are some common principles when it comes to holding the violin and preventing injury, there are numerous solutions for the set-up that allows you do to so: the shoulder rest, chin rest, or the choice not to use one or both.
Some people have broad shoulders, others more sloped. Some have long necks, or short, or in-between. Even the shape of your jaw and chin can make a difference, when it comes to holding the violin with ease and comfort.
For some, the solution might be to have no shoulder rest at all. For those using a rest, there are many options, and it will likely take some experimentation to settle on the right one for you.
Often the first option given to a student is some kind of foam cushion rest, as this tends to be the least expensive solution! A foam cushion rest can be cut from an old mattress pad, or one can buy something shaped especially for the violin such as the Acoustagrip, Komfort Kurve, Xeros and any number of other brands. More specialized are the clip-on rests such as a Kun, Wolf, Resonans or Viva. I've put "wooden" rests in another category, simply because they have such a different feel (and are considerably more expensive!); some of those include the Mach One, Kun Bravo, and Viva la Musica. Some swear by the "Playonair," which seems to be the only brand of air cushion shoulder rests.
Which do you use? Please mark it off in our vote, and then share more specifics in the comments.
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