I'm a longtime lurker and have greatly benefited from your combined knowledge and willingness to share ideas and experience. I have read all of the past threads on chin and shoulder rests and hesitate to reopen this can of worms, but...I really need some advice.
Some background: I currently have a Wolf Forte Primo shoulder rest and a chin rest that is VERY low (comes only about 2/3 of the way up the side of the tailpiece). I have the shoulder rest set at its lowest position (legs screwed all of the way in), but even so, after an hour or so of practice I develop terrible pain in my neck on the right side. I've tried playing without a shoulder rest and this does in fact eliminate the neck pain. I think I could get used to the substantially reduced stability of playing without a shoulder rest (very different from the rock solid feel of the violin with the Wolf in place), but I find myself hunching my left shoulder whenever I shift to a lower position when playing without the shoulder rest. This suggests to me that I do need some sort of shoulder rest/pad (or possibly just a taller chin rest). Although I guess it is equally possible that I just need to spend more time getting used to playing without a shoulder rest. I really don't
In general, my posture is good (22+ years in the military); when sitting or standing in a relaxed position, the distance between my jaw line and collar bone is 3 3/4 inches (~9.5cm).
Any general words of wisdom...? I know that my best bet would be to go to a store and try out a large number of different combinations of chin and shoulder rests (or chinrests without shoulder rests), but as I live in Auburn Alabama the nearest stringed instrument shop is in Atlanta (2-3 hour drive).
I realize that I've asked the equivalent of wanting a doctor to diagnose a sickness over the phone, so feel free to tell me that it's just not possible. Still, I'd be grateful for any advice you might offer.
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