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How's My Bowing?
Trying to loosen up my elbow and wrist, but am I succeeding?!
Topic Rating: 4.6 Topic Rating: 4.6 Topic Rating: 4.6 Topic Rating: 4.6 Topic Rating: 4.6 Topic Rating: 4.6 (5 votes) 
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Jim Dunleavy
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May 19, 2015 - 10:39 am
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OK, my first critique video! I posted a video on the sharing forum and a few people commented on my stiff wrist and shoulder so I've tried to improve it.

[EDIT: Can anyone name the tune I played at the end?]

For comparison here's one of my earlier videos: -

The difference is quite subtle to my eyes - what do the experts make of it though?

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ElisaDalViolin
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May 19, 2015 - 11:53 am
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Hi Jim.

You have improved indeed! The wrist looks more natural. Good job! 🙂

The only thing I would point is when you are doing the string crossing, your elbow is staying in the same position. That is more noticeable when you are bowing in the A and E strings. The arm should lead the wrist,  try to keep the elbow at the same level of the wrist. This will help you in intonation. My teacher call it the "Barbie arm" movement XD

 
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Jim Dunleavy
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May 19, 2015 - 12:49 pm
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Thanks @ElisaDalViolin - I'll watch out for my elbow position. smile

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Uzi
Georgia
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May 19, 2015 - 11:11 pm
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Good job Jim.  Bowing is definitely the hardest part of violin playing. 

A positive attitude may not solve all your problems, but it will annoy enough people to make it worth the effort. ~Herm Albright

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Fiddlestix
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May 19, 2015 - 11:52 pm
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I believe what makes bowing so difficult for some people is trying to synchronize right hand /arm / wrist with left hand / fingers. It's something one shouldn't have to think about, you just do it.

It's like playing any other instrument that requires two hands and timing.

violin-1267jimi-hendrixspike-1268concertina-4198

Ken.

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Fiddlestix
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May 19, 2015 - 11:58 pm
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Ohhhhhh and can't name the tune at the end, Jim. dunno Sorry.....

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Jim Dunleavy
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May 20, 2015 - 3:26 am
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Thanks guys - bowing correctly is certainly a challenge!

@ElisaDalViolin I've had a go this morning and just to clarify, is what you mean that as I cross from string to string I need to make sure my upper arm does the moving thus keeping the basic bowing motion of wrist and elbow the same for each string?

Ken, I didn't expect anyone on here to get it (except maybe @Bill, but I think he's still on holiday - vacation I mean). It's a local folk song called 'The Water of Tyne'.

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coolpinkone
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May 20, 2015 - 12:42 pm
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Good job on bowing. I see much more relaxed. Good job .. obviously you've been practicing.  

 I have trouble with bowing.. I have never put the correct amount of emphasis.. facepalm.. I should post something for the experts of the forum .. 

Good Job.

Vibrato Desperato.... Desperately seeking vibrato

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Jim Dunleavy
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May 20, 2015 - 1:21 pm
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Thanks Toni. http://fiddlerman.com/wp-content/forum-smileys/sf-smile.gif

It's certainly worth posting a video if there's something you're unsure about - people on here are so willing to help; it's amazing!

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ElisaDalViolin
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May 21, 2015 - 10:01 am
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Jim Dunleavy said
Thanks guys - bowing correctly is certainly a challenge!

@ElisaDalViolin I've had a go this morning and just to clarify, is what you mean that as I cross from string to string I need to make sure my upper arm does the moving thus keeping the basic bowing motion of wrist and elbow the same for each string?

Ken, I didn't expect anyone on here to get it (except maybe @Bill, but I think he's still on holiday - vacation I mean). It's a local folk song called 'The Water of Tyne'.

The forearm should do the moving, the wrist/hand "rests" and goes with the motion. The upper arm shouldn't move as much and the elbow adjusts in height or angle according to the string you are playing. It's kinda tricky to explain since it's all connected. 

A exercise you can do to understand this is just lay the bow on the strings and without bowing, you work your arm by crossing strings. 

I'm sorry if I sounded confusing, sometimes it's hard for me to express myself in english. Oh, and I did a mistake, for some reason I wrote E... clearly need to sleep more XD. 

 
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Jim Dunleavy
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May 21, 2015 - 11:25 am
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Thanks Elisa, that video makes it really clear.

If English isn't your first language, you write pretty well in it! I would never have known if you hadn't said.

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coolpinkone
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May 21, 2015 - 11:48 am
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@ElisaDalViolin Thank you for that video.  I like the clarity and simplification of the elbow positions for both arms.  😉

Cheers,

Toni

Vibrato Desperato.... Desperately seeking vibrato

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sus49
Vancouver Island, BC Canada
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May 21, 2015 - 12:43 pm
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@ElisaDalViolin  THANK YOU THANK YOU THANK YOU!!!!!!!!!

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sus49
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I was about to post a question about squeaking while slurring between strings.  I was going to ask what the trick is, but I am thinking that THIS might be the trick!  Thank you!   I will practice this and see if it solves my problem.!!  YOU GUYS ARE GREAT THANKS!!!!!!!

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ElisaDalViolin
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May 21, 2015 - 12:53 pm
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@Jim Dunleavy  Portuguese is my first language. Thank you for the compliment! 🙂

@coolpinkone and @sus49  I'm glad I could help you too! 🙂

 
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Fiddlerman
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May 26, 2015 - 8:48 pm
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Great improvement Jim. Thanks for putting both videos up for comparison. I don't know the last tune you played either. 🙁

"The richest person is not the one who has the most,
but the one who needs the least."

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Jim Dunleavy
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May 27, 2015 - 4:07 am
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Thanks Fiddlerman - it certainly feels better and more consistent.

That tune is a local folk song called 'The Water of Tyne'. I doubt if it's well know outside the UK.

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BillyG
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Just catching up on all these missed posts.  Thanks for the post @Jim Dunleavy - I see the improvement!

Yup, there's one heck of a lot of both left hand and right-arm motor-skill and auditory co-ordination going on in the old brain when playing violin.   I guess it eventually becomes automatic, and I originally found bowing somewhat awkward.  A year on, and it is beginning to become automatic, but, I know I have a few bad habits that need to be watched out for.  

OH - yes I've heard that tune before, but I could not have put a name to it....

I seriously recommend not copying my mistakes.  

Please make your own, different mistakes, and help us all learn :-)

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Fiddlerman
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May 28, 2015 - 3:43 pm
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Jim Dunleavy said
Thanks Fiddlerman - it certainly feels better and more consistent.

That tune is a local folk song called 'The Water of Tyne'. I doubt if it's well know outside the UK.

Good to know. Thanks for the title 🙂

"The richest person is not the one who has the most,
but the one who needs the least."

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