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: I am 43 years old and have been taking lessons for a little over a year. I am having problems keeping my hand relaxed and freed up to learn vibrato. My hand gets very fatigued and I push too hard with my thumb. Any pointers?

Steve, try holding a long pencil as though you had all 4 fingers down on the same string and moving ONLY your hand FROM THE WRIST. Practice, my boy, practice.

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: : I am 43 years old and have been taking lessons for a little over a year. I am having problems keeping my hand relaxed and freed up to learn vibrato. My hand gets very fatigued and I push too hard with my thumb. Any pointers?

: Steve, try holding a long pencil as though you had all 4 fingers down on the same string and moving ONLY your hand FROM THE WRIST. Practice, my boy, practice.

Just keep at it, every day. A year from now you'll have it down.

This is really the only way.

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: Try vibratoing (is that a word?) very wide and slowly. It sounds ridiculous, but it helps to relax your hand and also to help you get used to the motions.

: Angela

For what it's worth, the verb is "to vibrate", according to a couple of conductors I've had. :-)

Thanks

Laurel

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: I am 43 years old and have been taking lessons for a little over a year. I am having problems keeping my hand relaxed and freed up to learn vibrato. My hand gets very fatigued and I push too hard with my thumb. Any pointers?

Here are some things my teacher is having me work on:

Lean the scroll of the violin up against a wall (gently) while you are practising vibrato; thus you can concentrate on the vibrato motion without worrying about holding the instrument so much. That can come later.

Starting on G string, do 2 whole notes - one down-bow, one up-bow - with each finger in turn, and on each string in turn.

Also, try doing very slow vibrato - i.e., a half-note above the pitch, then a half-note below the pitch (same whole note bows as above). Then vibrate quarter notes, that is, 4 "oscillations" per bow. Then eighth notes (8 per bow). Then triplets. Then sixteenth notes. Then a bit faster than sixteenths, which is a nice vibrato speed.

Strive for a nice funky "wowowowowowowow" sound. Make sure it is a movement of the hand, rather than jerking. One thing I have to do is concentrate on not tensing my bicep or tricep. This is tricky!

Make any sense? Hope it helps!

Thanks

Laurel

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