The Yost System for Violin
The Yost System for Violin was mentioned in a recent article on Pinchas Zukerman in The Strad magazine. I remember reading decades ago that Dorothy Delay used Yost with her students, though PZ studied with Galamian, not Delay. Does anyone have any experience with the Yost System and, if so, any thoughts you can share? Thank you.
My son has used bits and pieces of it. He was introduced to it at his summer program technique class and he actually found it really helpful for shifting and some other techniques. It's difficult to get ahold of a lot of the materials, though some of it is on IMSLP (3 books). A quick Google seems to show that the only way to get the books is directly from his estate. https://www.yostviolinsystem.com/
It’s very effective; Stephen Clapp (former student of both DeLay and Galamian, I believe) used the Exercises in Change of Position with me at Oberlin.
The Yost system for shifting goes through every possible shift on the violin up to 7th position. It can be useful as it provides a system for shifting. However, it is useless if used in a mindless way. If you apply the concepts of effective shifting which are fairly simple, then there is no need to go through the entire book.
I used yost religiously in college, but not lately.
I make all of the students I work with explore the Yost 1-finger scales. We target specific skills needed to get around the fingerboard effectively.
His grandson (?) with the same name is a member of this site and sells the books. There are several of them that are really excellent, epecially yhe one on shifting, but also the one on Harmonics/Pizzicato, his book on double stopping and his treatise on Spivakovskys way of bowing.
How does this compare with the work of Simon Fischer, who seems to have pinched all my own tricks and added a whole lot more?!
Alexander, I don't know. After reading "Zukerman recommends .... violinists loosen up by practising The Yost System for Violin, and play while standing on a chair to ensure stability and minimal body movement" I decided I better look up some more about that, so I checked out what is visible on IMSLP.
Adrian, I only have one Simon Fischer book, but my general impression is that Simon Fischer tends to be general, while Yost is overly specific, providing exercise for every possible situation you might encounter, especially regarding shifting.
Yost is more like Sevcik or Dounis than Fischer. Lots of excercises, few words.