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Thread: Musicians

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Apr 2004
    Posts
    30

    Cool Musicians

    Hey!
    I was curious to see how many of you played an instrument.(Doesn't matter what kind) I play the violin and my scoliosis causes me pain in orchestra, both in school and the youth orchestra that we have in our city which I am a part of. I also find it hard to practice for very long with out feeling pain in my lower back which is where my largest curve is. Normally I have to stretch but in orchestra(esp. at school) I feel really dumb doing that. The guy I sit next to knows that I have scoliosis and the cellist who sits across from me notices that I turn a lot in my chair sometimes. My mom told me that I would have to choose and I told her there was NO WAY I would give up my violin just because of my scoliosis. I was just curious to see how many musicians there are out there with scoliosis.

    Thanks!!

  2. #2
    Mary Lou Guest
    Hi Ellie....
    My daughter plays the flute. Her major complaint is that she can't take a deep enough breathe when she is in her brace. We've asked her instructor for suggestions and she nor her father could come up with any suggestions. Our solution is to take the brace off when playing. I know that sounds like a bad idea, but it works for us. Like you, I don't want her to give up her music for Scoliosis. Scoliosis has caused enough problems in her life and we refuse to let it win and take away everything!
    Mary Lou

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Apr 2004
    Posts
    30
    Hi Mary Lou,
    I could imagine that it would be hard to take deep breathes while wearing a brace. I don't wear a brace, though I get a 2nd opinion Tuesday so that may change, but it doesn't sound like a bad idea if she can play better. I know that I have to stretch sometimes when I play in orchestra or I am practicing. Whatever helps, including taking off the brace for a little while. Hope your daughter has lots of fun with her flute!

    Thanks again

  4. #4
    Join Date
    May 2004
    Posts
    66
    I used to play piano a couple of years ago,but now I play clarinet and a tiny bit of flute.

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Apr 2004
    Posts
    30
    Does your scoliosis seem to bother you when you play though?

    Ellie

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Jan 2004
    Posts
    37
    i play guitar and it can bother me after playing for a wile because i have a habit of slouching wile i play

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Apr 2004
    Posts
    30
    Ya it is the opposite in my case. It hurts my back if I sit up straight for too long in orchestra. So normally I end up slouching some.

  8. #8
    Join Date
    May 2004
    Posts
    66
    Noo. it doesn't.

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Sep 2003
    Location
    Massachusetts
    Posts
    4
    Did you know that Yo-Yo Ma, the world famous cellist, has scoliosis and also has had a fusion!

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Apr 2004
    Posts
    30
    Ya I found that out!! My mom had been looking at something and she had found that he had scoliosis. She didn't know about the fusion. That's kinda cool that a famous musician has it though!!

    ellie

  11. #11
    Join Date
    Feb 2004
    Location
    Perth, Western Australia, Australia
    Posts
    299
    Hi Ellie

    The instruments I play are the Clarinet, Flute, Alto Saxophone and Piano. My spine is fused from T2-T11. I did wear a back brace (one that went from under my arms to my hips and it was pretty tight) for 9 years and began to play the clarinet in the last two years of wearing a back brace before my surgery. I always wore my back-brace when I was playing. I found problems in playing the piano for a long time because you get no support, so I used a stool with a back instead. The only problem I had every so often (when it was high or very fast notes) was breathing fast enough when I was playing my other instruments. I used an asthma inhaler to help open up my lungs. The only time I took my brace off was for performance exams. Perhaps you could try sitting on a cushion/on the seat and at your back. OR sitting on a wedge cushion (the cellists in orchestra use them)

    Alison

  12. #12
    Join Date
    Apr 2004
    Posts
    30
    Hey, that's a good idea! Maybe I could sit on my gym bag since I go at zero period so we have to leave our bags in the music room. I am also getting a brace soon so it may change when I sit in orchestra but I won't know until school starts again in the fall. Thanks for the awesome tip. I think I will try that out tomorrow!

    ellie

  13. #13
    Join Date
    Feb 2004
    Location
    Perth, Western Australia, Australia
    Posts
    299
    Hi Mary Lou

    You didn't mention what kind of brace your daughter has. Personally I don't think taking the brace off for playing is a good idea. Yes you get a better breath when you aren't in the brace, but then the brace isn't doing its effect (especially if it is a 23/24 hour a day brace). I play lots of instruments including clarinet and flute and began to play the clarinet when I still had my back-brace. I have a suggestion for you; could a better option be your daughter "loosening" her brace whilst she was playing.


    Hi Ellie

    I know that school in America is finished now (i think) but this is a thought for your brace and long term. You need to watch when your brace is made that it doesn't press into your legs when your sitting. The brace maker can "flay up" the ends slightly to make it more comfortable. In your brace it'll probably be a lot more comfortable to play, but sitting on a cushion/wedge cushion will probably still be a good idea.

    Alison

  14. #14
    Join Date
    Apr 2004
    Posts
    30
    Actually, I meant next fall because I don't have my brace yet(have an appointment like the 14th). That's probably something I do need to make sure of, the whole sitting thing. That would add to the discomfort by having it press into my legs. I think I will probably try the whole sitting on a cushion thing still like you suggested. Thanks for the help!!!!!

    ellie

  15. #15
    Join Date
    May 2004
    Location
    Austin, TX
    Posts
    18

    chair cushion

    When my daughter started wearing her brace, we had a chair cushion made for her. It fit over the back of school chairs and tied around the back. There was a cushion on the back and bottom for comfort. She had no problem taking it to school and using it because she found it much more comfortable.

    Also, the orthodpeic that made the brace made sure it did not cut into the top of her thigh. If it is uncomfortable on your thighs, be sure to speak up. You are the best judge!

    Good luck! Teri

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