A Curious Dent in My Finger From Holding Bow

April 28, 2004 at 09:41 PM · I have a curious dent, as does my teacher, in my index finger. It is a result of the bow resting on the index finger just below the joint. I hold the bow according to the Dounis method, which is basically a Franco-Belgian hold. This dent doesn't cause me any pain or loss of dexterity in the finger, it just looks a little odd if you examine my hand. I was wondering, does anyone else who rests the bow against the index finger below the joint have this curious dent?

Replies (21)

April 28, 2004 at 09:56 PM · I get a dent when I practice, and sometimes a slight callus (shock!). Also in my left hand the bone sticks out at the base knuckle of my first finger, right where I used double contact for a long time. Argh, I'm disfigured! Reminds me of a joke I once heard about the wives of a cellist and a French horn player... I think it was one of Emil's...

April 28, 2004 at 09:55 PM · Yeah, I have one of those too, the skin is really flat in that area from constant contact with the bow.

April 28, 2004 at 10:22 PM · there is a visual mark on my finger but no dent, curious.

April 28, 2004 at 11:07 PM · Yes, that too. I also think that my bones just developed differently because of the violin. Wouldn't you expect they would especially if you start at a young age (6 in my case)? I went to a chiropractor not long ago who asked if I had been a swimmer. I said "No, a violinist." My mother (also a violinist) and I both have one shoulder blade that's higher than the other..there's no way this instrument didn't screw me up after all these years!

April 28, 2004 at 11:41 PM · I've got a great image of a Quasimodoesque violinist who's incapable of functioning when his nose, left elbow and left foot aren't aligned...

April 29, 2004 at 12:06 AM · You know, everyones physiology is different, but I'm sure that the majority of fiddle players have some sort of dent or callus on their index finger (I have a callus). Also, I don't know how long you have been playing, but in time you can probably expect that the finger tips of your left hand will curl up as well (take a good look at a photo of Heifetz's hands). My finger tips curl up too. Its part of the hazzards of playing a musical instrument. It's part of the wear and tear (not really a hazzard). You know that most trumpet players develope a deformity in the lips from pressing the mouthpiece against them. So no real biggie.

April 29, 2004 at 01:20 AM · What is with the violin hickey ?!?!! my mother keeps giving me the strangest looks...

April 29, 2004 at 01:37 AM · Sue, luckily it sounds worse than it is..it really took xrays to see the shoulder/hip thing (oh, I didn't mention that we have one hip higher than the other as well?) I do really well in arm-wrestling though which I do credit to my fabulous bow arm. (I really AM a swan, can I be in the prune book, Puleeze???)

April 29, 2004 at 01:38 AM · I didn't have a dent, I had a wart. I finally disposed of that menace one and for all this week... or did I? Find out next week...

From the Russian school, I have a callous on the knuckle, just like one you would see from writing.

April 29, 2004 at 05:16 PM · luckily my hicky is sort of obscured by the prune necklace i wear religiously

April 29, 2004 at 06:27 PM · Just curious, is the "standard" hickey the one where the upper side of the violin (chinrest) lies? That one is visible on my neck, but not very intrusive. But at the place where the violin rests on my collarbone, the skin is _really_ purple and has become somewhat thicker, too.

April 29, 2004 at 07:02 PM · I have never heard of a mark on the collarbone. The infamous "hickey" generally appears on the neck.

April 29, 2004 at 07:35 PM · But purple? Maybe best you see a doctor. Also, you say the mark on your neck is not very intrusive - does this imply that the one on your collarbone is intrusive? If you are breaking the skin while playing, I'd say something seriously needs to be done.

April 29, 2004 at 08:52 PM · Dont' worry, mine is purple too. I think it's part bruise, part regular violin mark. It's a bit sore when i practice alot. I have that mark on my collar bone too. I think it just depends of how you uniquely hold your violin and what kind of shoulder and chin rests you use.


April 29, 2004 at 11:29 PM · My left pinky is a 1/4 inch shorter than my right pinky- perhaps from overuse during those growing years. I'm not happy about that since I have very small hands to begin with.

I don't have a dent on my right finger but I was able to heal my hickey with arnica.

April 30, 2004 at 03:42 AM · Greetings,

that is unusual. Usually, a violnists left hand finger sare longer than the right. You didn"t get bitten by a wild animal at some point did you?



April 30, 2004 at 04:21 AM · My ring size is bigger on my right hand than my left..more playing-aerobics done with the left I always figured.

May 1, 2004 at 05:16 AM · my violin mark has been fading, although i'm playing more i think, i must be getting more relaxed. I've noticed a lot more head movement, i have that oistrakh "looking around while i play" thing going on. if only i had the oistrakh bowarm, spicatto, left hand, interpretation, jowls etc.

May 1, 2004 at 05:40 AM · my violin hickey incites inappropriate comments at school such as, "what have YOU been doing all night?" (rolls eyes). i would use a cloth to cover the metal thingeys that cause the hickey but then the whole violin would be too fat for my neck and i'd strain a muscle or something.. -__-"

i also have a pretty disgusting bump&callous on my right index finger. i just noticed it like two months ago too! it makes my hand look somewhat deformed. i also noticed that if you lay both hands palm down on a flat surface, the fingers on the right hand are not facing UP. they're like facing the left. or at least the fingertips are.

gah i have a bump on my right ring finger from writing and a bump from my bow. plus my pinkies are crooked to the extent that i can crack them sideways hAHAH ewww that's disgusting

May 1, 2004 at 11:03 PM · In high school, I bought a foam pad that slips over the chin rest and felt really comfortable, eliminating the chin rest. However, if a classmate saw the pad apart from the violin, they accused me of wearing "falsies," or "stuffing." Which, of couse is all some high school boys think about.

May 1, 2004 at 11:21 PM · I guess you just hide the pad in the case...

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