What/where are some common injuries from violin playing?
I've got some inflammation in the left lower bicep, and deltoid area. And some on the left forearm. This might be from some previous exacerbating injuries. Feels like all of it are from twisting my arm up.
Where are some common areas violinists sustain injuries? Besides the pocketbook.
I my case it's bruises about the head and shoulders from my wife ripping my bow from my hand and beating me severely with it.
Rotator cuff tendinitis is common among violinists and violists, as are biceps, triceps, and deltoid strains and various neck injuries. These may occur on both sides, not only on the left side. Also, TMJ dysfunction (among those who rely too much on the head to hold the instrument in place), carpal tunnel syndrome, and cubital tunnel syndrome.
Thoracic outlet syndrome, and, not an injury, but a really big medical problem that changing ergonomics, chin rest, shoulder rests, etc. will not fix; juvenile-onset rheumatoid arthritis.
Shoulder and neck. My neck pops when I look to the right and my shoulder usually hurts when I lay down for bed.
I might be having some of the delt, bicep, and forearm tendonitis, though this could be transferred nerve pain from a pre-existing shoulder injury. I try to wear an ear plug on the left, and might try to do something on the right.
Laura at Red Desert Violin had problems with elbow tendinitis from playing and she eventually posted several videos with some simple warmup/stretches she uses. She isn't a medical professional, but I've certainly found them helpful and can tell it when I don't do them before practicing. I've significant shoulder/neck problems and these short exercises before playing really help. This is a link to the one I normally use, she has others on the free side of her channel.
Thank you Catherine.
Perhaps you guys with arm issues should try playing without an SR? Once mastered (where the violin rests on the collarbone and hand and the arm is relaxed), the advantage is that the arm/shoulder has much more freedom of movement, reducing repetitive stress-injury. Of course it is not for everyone and I am sure there are others with SR-less problems (often associated more with the neck). Still, its an option.
I should have said my problems long predated my return to the violin. With the nature of my neck and shoulder problems the lack of a shoulder rest would have decided consequences...
My left ear is compromised.
I can only play without a shoulder rest if I never play on the viola C string. Short fingers, so I have to tilt the viola a lot more than most people. Playing without a shoulder rest forces me to hold it too high and too flat. For that matter, even the violin G string is hard without a shoulder rest.
This warm-up will help you improve your pitch: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5M2Kj-iBXPc
" I can only play without a shoulder rest if I never play on the viola C string. Short fingers, so I have to tilt the viola a lot more than most people. Playing without a shoulder rest forces me to hold it too high and too flat. For that matter, even the violin G string is hard without a shoulder rest."
So... I literally have the shortest fingers of any adult I've ever met. I have a friend who is 4'8", almost a foot shorter than me, and has longer fingers than mine. And I play viola -- I actually hate playing violin and only do so if there is an urgent need for one. I assure you this is not subconscious. If I play without a rest, I have to swing my elbow to an extreme position (arm almost flush against the back of the instrument) just to be able to stop the C string.
I've just returned home from spending the day playing for English folk dancers - about 6 hours in all. The middle-aged fiddler (I didn't know him) sitting next to me remarked as we were packing up at the end of a busy day that his LH fingers hurt. I suggested that perhaps he was pressing down too hard - I had observed his technique and had reason to think this was a real possibility. He replied that he had been playing the fiddle all his life so it couldn't be that! The conversation didn't continue because almost immediately we went our separate ways.
The biggest injury I've ever gotten from the violin is to my sense of self-worth...
What hurts most if listening to myself play.
When my teacher assigned me the D Minor Gigue from Partita No. 2, some years ago, I decided to really go after it. I did not warm up properly and I just started blasting away at it. I locked up my forearm and had to take two weeks off.
For me, switching to use a shoulder-rest is what
Arthritis pain was a very, very minor problem before I returned to violin one year ago, but now I’m working to manage pain in both thumbs. Falling barometric pressure makes it worse too. Rainy days would be good practice days, but, alas.
I got tennis elbow in my left elbow from tense vibrato. I used a theraband flexbar and the accompanying exercise and it cleared right up. That one I highly recommend!
I thought it was YMMV. May, not will. :)
I knew it looked a bit odd! Thanks for the correction Paul; my dyslexia is getting worse with age (I think I really do have a mild case - often inverting letters...) ... :P
Well, perhaps it was an affirmative, pro-active acronym:
Wow, Tim, I heard that was how the Flash got his super-powers!
This discussion has been archived and is no longer accepting responses.