Wedding (or whatever) Ring: Right hand or left?

March 19, 2008 at 05:22 PM · As we know, string players often wear theirs on their right hand. In my orchestra, I've noticed that, although we have a few violinists who wear theirs on the left hand, the "left-handers" are mostly violists & bass players. (insert viola joke here.)

Replies (53)

March 19, 2008 at 05:39 PM · I'm a violinist and when I was married I wore mine on my left hand. My former teacher, Felicia Moye, wore her wedding band (and her engagement ring with a huge rock) on her left hand as well.

March 19, 2008 at 05:48 PM · I wear mine on my left hand, but I remove it when I play any instruments (strings or woodwinds). I don't like having the extra weight, slight as it might be.

March 19, 2008 at 05:52 PM · Hey Bruce, Left hand. I guess I'm different. Terry

March 19, 2008 at 05:58 PM · Left hand.

March 19, 2008 at 06:51 PM · I don't wear mine at all. I did have to clear the idea with my wife -). She's understanding about it, being a violinist herself.

Larry Samuels

March 19, 2008 at 07:01 PM · I don't wear mine either. My husband understands.

March 19, 2008 at 07:14 PM · I only wear my wedding band, and I wear it on my left hand. I only wear my engagement ring when I am going somewhere where I know I won't be playing. I did have a teacher that wore both wedding band and engagement ring on her right hand. She hated the way they felt on her left while she was playing, and her husband wanted her to wear them all the time.

March 19, 2008 at 07:51 PM · I know a lot of violinists who wear their wedding rings/bands on their right hands, or not at all. I had thought to switch from left to right when I played, until I learned that my ring fingers are completely different sizes! The ring was fitted to my left hand, and I didn't notice a big I love how it sparkles when my fingers move! (I read once that it's not good to have visual distractions like a flashing wedding ring when you play...but how distracting can it be?)

March 19, 2008 at 08:24 PM · Left hand. I have noticed that the top tier professionals seem to wear it on their right. It has never been a problem for me, but then, I am not a top tier player.

March 19, 2008 at 08:34 PM · I wear wedding ring and engagement ring on my right hand. I found that if my engagement ring slid sideways, the stones would get in the way so I moved both to the right hand. But, I do wear a small signet ring on my left. It's flat so it doesn't get in the way at all.

March 19, 2008 at 08:42 PM · I wear my wedding band on the right hand all the time. But being Greek Orthodox that's where we normally wear our wedding band anyway. I don't like to see rings/bracelets on violinists' hands when they play. It's visually inconsistent in my mind.

March 19, 2008 at 10:08 PM · I wear mine on my left. It's a 2 ct diamond set in platinum (not bragging, just giving you a visual). It's very heavy, but my hand feels funny without it.

March 19, 2008 at 10:23 PM · I only wear a wedding band on my left, but I can't get it off now, and it would be too small to wear on my right hand. I would switch if I could. In Poland it's usual to wear it on your right hand. I may get another one and I'll definitely wear it on my right hand.

March 20, 2008 at 12:12 AM · I'm a violist that uses a rather large viola(17 inches). Ofcourse if I could marry(I'm homosexual) I would probally wear the rig on my right hand, but I do wear a wide platnium band on my right hand now.

March 20, 2008 at 02:00 AM · Right hand - it never occurred to me to put it on my left...

March 20, 2008 at 03:07 AM · Blake - That's why I said "wedding (or whatever) ring." My state recently passed a domestic dartnership law, but somehow "Domestic Partnership Ring" doesn't have quite the same...

pardon the pun...

RING to it.

Sorry about that.

*grimaces, grabs forehead*

Anyway, I just call mine "my ring." And I wear it on my left hand.

March 20, 2008 at 04:19 PM · I wore my ring on the left hand. But it's no longer an issue because I've lost both of them.

March 20, 2008 at 04:46 PM · Hands or rings?

March 20, 2008 at 05:10 PM · Megan, you took the words right out of my mouth.

Except that Scott, did you once post some comments about the pain of a recent separation/divorce? No joking matter, that. It was quite affecting to read. If that was indeed your post/situation, I hope things are now easier. And that you still have your left hand. : /

March 20, 2008 at 05:26 PM · I wear both on my left hand, but take them off when I play (and when I sleep - I get a rash if I wear them overnight).

March 20, 2008 at 05:49 PM · Well since we've gone in this direction, I will now ask the question of Bernadette that I refrained from asking before:

New ring, or new Polish husband?

March 20, 2008 at 11:36 PM · Terez,

No, I'm not divorced or separated. Are you sure it was me?

As to whether I was referring to my hand or the ring(s): just be careful when someone says "lend me a hand."

March 21, 2008 at 12:18 AM · No rings. Not a jewellery person. Nor do I see the point of my fingers being wrapped by expensive metal straps. They sometimes look good on other people's fingers though.

March 21, 2008 at 01:27 AM · >Terez,

No, I'm not divorced or separated. Are you sure it was me?

Ah. Safe to say, then, that it wasn't you. But then, ewww, that must mean you really DID lose your left hand. Are you sure you wouldn't rather just lose a spouse? : /

March 21, 2008 at 02:53 AM · I wear mine on a gold chain around my neck. Doesn't affect my fingers at all and-- hey-- it's closer to my heart.

March 21, 2008 at 01:44 PM · Probably those who oppose the idea of wearing a ring on their left hand (as I did) would be surprised to find that, if they do give it a try, after a while it feels like the ring is not even there! Then again, I am no great player... and I like peanut butter after first absolutely hating it :-)

March 21, 2008 at 03:00 PM · Left hand, just a simple band. Not a jewelry person either - that's the only jewelry I wear.

March 21, 2008 at 07:06 PM · Come to think of it, the only “jewellery” I wear is my stainless steel watch. But I always take it off when I’m playing. I wonder how many violinists wearing a watch when playing?

March 21, 2008 at 07:16 PM · I wear my rings on my left hand. Since my engagement and wedding rings have been permanently welded (soldered?) together, they are one unit. I take everything off when I play...that is to say, all my jewelry. (Though perhaps my performances could be a bit more interesting if...) ;-)

I can't stand to have any rings/bracelets/watches on at all when I play. When I was taking physical therapy for my tendonitis (elbows) my PT told me not to have ANY jewelry on when I played as the slightest bit of swelling could cause problems with jewelry. Don't know if he was being overly dramatic, but I do feel better with nothing on my hands.

March 21, 2008 at 09:54 PM · Left hand. It's never bothered me while playing.

March 21, 2008 at 11:38 PM · I was thinking about the same question when I noticed that the string section of the San Francisco Symphony had rings almost exclusively on their right hands.

I don't wear a whatever ring but if I did it would be on the right.

March 22, 2008 at 08:42 AM · I wear my wedding ring on my right hand. It's a gold band, and it does not cause any trouble for playing. When my wife and I were engaged, I wore it on my left hand, and it did not cause any trouble either.

In the Netherlands, it is (or perhaps was) traditional to do it that way: left hand for an engagement ring, switch to the right when you marry. That is, if you are Protestant. The Catholics do (or did?) it the other way round.

March 22, 2008 at 12:39 PM · I purposefully requested a plain platinum band from my husband (to his relief, I'm sure) rocks/texture/bumps. I wear it on my left hand ring finger and it has never inconvenienced me in playing.

March 22, 2008 at 06:17 PM · I have worn my wedding ring on my left hand (can't wear my engagement ring anymore), but when I was in college, my professor was very much against wearing any jewelry on the left hand or wrist (including watches).

However, I know several very good violinists who wear their rings on their left hands.

March 22, 2008 at 10:15 PM · OK, Bruce, just for the record, new ring, not new husband yet - he's till death do us part - and it hasn't yet. Sometimes we have to be so clear on this site :-)

March 22, 2008 at 11:07 PM · I wear both the wedding and engagement ring all the time; when I play I switch it over to the right hand, then back to the left when I'm not playing!

March 23, 2008 at 01:42 AM · Bruce . . . I live in Georgia so that's not happening any time soon lol and besides I'm only 15 so I don't even have to worry abot getting married.

March 23, 2008 at 05:22 PM · Blake - all I'm gonna say is: practice hard through college, and win a job in Canada!

OK, shutting up now, before this thread takes a sharp left into politics...

March 23, 2008 at 05:45 PM · I wear both my engagement and wedding ring on my left hand, that is, when I wear them. I practice martial arts and I do not wear rings when I train, so most of the time I don't wear them at all. But when I do wear them, it does not bother me at all.

March 25, 2008 at 05:02 AM · Plain band on my left hand, diamond engagement ring and anniversary band on my right. The band doesn't get in the way but the stones do even though they're rather modest. Most of my colleagues wear their rings on the right hands but not all.

April 6, 2008 at 02:54 AM · I wear both rings on my right hand all the time. I tried wearing them on my left, but after spending most of my life never wearing jewelery on my left hand or wrist, it just felt too strange.

January 13, 2017 at 07:32 AM · Love has the power to make our dream come true. Similarly, my love is like where you go and stay, I will be with you. I won’t allow you to walk alone because we promise to live together. My parents asked me to wear my engagement ring on the left hand because it’s directly connected to your partner’s heart. The most wonderful thing we decided to share long life is our love, heart and respect. It is like two hearts but they beat as one.

January 13, 2017 at 09:32 AM · When I have a ring, I switch to right hand, or I cannot play with good left hand form.

January 13, 2017 at 01:27 PM · how are you going to play fast parts with your ring on the left hand? it would be constantly chafing on your fingers.... i shudder just thinking about it.

January 13, 2017 at 01:56 PM · Sounds like everyone is having a problem with their beau hold. (Or is it that with a ring on the left hand ring finger it's harder to thrill?)

.....I know, I know - you're going to ask me how I got on the staff.

January 13, 2017 at 05:27 PM ·

January 13, 2017 at 06:29 PM · I thought most mainland Europeans wore their rings on their right hand anyway and wearing them on the left hand was an English-speaking thing.

If I try to wear even a watch on my left wrist I need to take it off - right wrist isn't so bad, but I am more comfortable without.

January 13, 2017 at 06:54 PM · "On which hand would you wear a bracelet or ring?" Test and decide for yourself what is most comfortable. I wear bracelets on both hands and it's not a problem for me. I have no experience with rings whatsoever.

January 14, 2017 at 12:13 AM · I'll have to agree with Emily Grossman, always on the left and has never bothered me. (yes I know I'm 20 and already married haha)

January 14, 2017 at 03:30 AM · As a male, I have a simple band, and wear it on my left hand. When I used to wear my huge college/fraternity ring, it was on the right hand. It was just too cumbersome for me to play well with it on the left hand. (And yes, I am a violist.)

January 15, 2017 at 12:22 AM · I wear my wedding ring on my left hand but made sure I got a thin one. I have no problem with it at all. Just don't get a thick ring.

January 15, 2017 at 08:49 PM · I have a small wedding band and wear it on my left had with no problem. I don't know notice it hitting the violin, at least.

I also wear a largish stainless automatic diver's watch on my left hand, and it's not a problem either. I keep the band fairly tight, though, as I don't like it flopping up and down my arm.

However, I started wearing these accessories during my absence from the violin and got used to them before I started playing again, so they didn't bother me at all when I did start playing. I wonder if you play constantly from childhood, when you don't usually wear such accessories, if that impacts which hand you wear them on because it would be weird to spend years playing without them and then one day try to play with them on.

January 22, 2017 at 10:22 AM · Fine gold band on left hand, watch on right wrist. No problems with either.

Cheers Carlo

This discussion has been archived and is no longer accepting responses.

Facebook Twitter YouTube Instagram Email is made possible by...

Shar Music
Shar Music

Pirastro Strings
Pirastro Strings

JR Judd Violins
JR Judd Violins

Dimitri Musafia, Master Maker of Violin and Viola Cases
Dimitri Musafia, Master Maker of Violin and Viola Cases Shopping Guide Shopping Guide


Metzler Violin Shop

Southwest Strings

Bobelock Cases

Johnson String Instrument/Carriage House Violins

Jargar Strings

Bay Fine Strings Violin Shop


Los Angeles Violin Shop


String Masters

Nazareth Gevorkian Violins

Laurie's Books

Discover the best of in these collections of editor Laurie Niles' exclusive interviews. Interviews Volume 1 Interviews Volume 1, with introduction by Hilary Hahn Interviews Volume 2 Interviews Volume 2, with introduction by Rachel Barton Pine