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Not Built For the Violin (2)
Red Desert Violin posted a topic in The FingerboardHi Everyone First of all, this site is GREAT, and SO friendly and encouraging! I'm a first timer here, and found you after doing a google search on how large breasts or even extra weight interferes with violin playing. The old post I found was called "Not Built for the Violin", but it was over 10 years old, so I'm starting a new one, under the same name. Most people agreed that extra weight and/or large breasts DO NOT interfere with playing violin....but no one addressed the combination of large breasts and SHORT arms, or a short build. I would LOVE a dialogue on this combination, because I gotta say....when you are short, you can only move the violin so far to the "left" before your bow is completely crooked and out of whack. I find that large breasts DO interfere with violin if you are also quite short. (I'm 5'2") I would LOVE to hear from others regarding this, and does anyone know a prominent soloist who is large chested AND short? (I was told Pam Frank is endowed...but I'm not sure of her height) For those of you who don't have first hand knowledge, let me explain it to you, so that if you have students with this body type, you'll be able to offer some tips: In high positions, it is difficult to bring the left elbow in closely to the body. But, if you can approach from the side, and "scooch" your curves in with your arm as you shift up, it's manageable. Also, lifting the violin up as you shift can help you get into the position you need to be in. Playing on the E String: To me, this is the WORST impedence. The bow arm is often impeded by the right breast, especially on brush spiccato, or things that involve the lower half of the bow. The only advice I have is to make sure to utilize the elbow and wrist as much as possible, because moving the upper arm is asking for trouble. Clingy clothes and long sleeves makes the problem much worse. Moving the violin more toward the FRONT is helpful for this problem. Shoulder Rests: If you or your students use them, and if you have my build, you need a shoulder rest that allows you to adjust your position and geometry freely. I loved the Bon Musica, but it held my violin too firmly in place at times when I needed it to let me adjust. Ok, this is a REALLY long post for a new comer. Thanks for tolerating me, and I'd love to hear other tips from y'all, and YES, I agree, ANY body type can play, but realistically, some of us have to make adaptations, and I"m looking for ideas! Red Desert Violin (Lora)