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Thread: pain while playing in orchestra

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Aug 2004

    pain while playing in orchestra

    I am a 15 year old violist with scoliosis, and this summer I went to Eastern Music Festival. We talked a lot about relieving tension in your body, and there's some stuff I found really helpful for my back. One thing you can try to relieve lower back stiffness is to put wooden blocks about 2-2 1/2 in high under the back 2 legs of your chair. This puts your chair at an incline and helps support your back. It may look a little funny, but trust me, if you do it right, it does help. Cushions are also helpful, especially ones made of a squishy foam material. Stretching is also essential. Even if it feels dorky, you should stretch for about five minutes prior to playing. Bending over to touch your toes and letting your body weight "flow" towards your upper body is a good one. Also, when sitting, make sure that your back stays as vertical as possible (pretend that your spine & neck are in a straight line perpendicular to the floor.) Also make sure that you are not raising your shoulders when you play (this is a BIG one!) This helps keep your entire torso more relaxed. When standing, DO NOT LOCK YOUR KNEES! This distorts the position of your body and causes a lot of stiffness. Try to remain as relaxed as possible, which I know is extremely difficult to do while wearing a brace.
    Hope this was helpful!!!

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Jul 2004
    Austin, Texas

    Great Suggestions

    I too am a violist and harpist! It is very important for those of us who are musicians with scoliosis to keep in mind that playing for any period of time can and will cause stress on the back. I have also had luck with using lumbar support while playing. Playing through a 3 hour concert can take its toll on us. Keep up the good work!

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