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Left hand tips?
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Advanced member
July 12, 2015 - 2:25 pm
Member Since: May 16, 2014
Forum Posts: 93
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I have a real problem manipulating my left hand on the neck. I always end of clutching the instrument which makes movement on the E string problematic. What I don't understand is how you're supposed to hold the instrument so that you can press down effectively on the string without it slipping. Just about where on the hand should the neck rest? On the thumb? Or in the curve of the hand?

July 12, 2015 - 3:46 pm
Member Since: July 6, 2015
Forum Posts: 5
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Now I am still a newb!  However, taking lessons and the very first bit of business my instructor went over with me was having my shoulder rest for my violin adjusted so that I could comfortably support the violin with my chin and shoulder.  This helped with proper left hand placement afterwards because I was no longer supporting the instrument with my left hand.  

The violin rests in my left hand between the fleshy bit of my thumb and the base joint of my pointer finger leaving a nice empty space down were the webbing of the thumb is (if that makes any since?).  Main thing is being able to support the violin fully with your shoulder and chin that way you are not grasping the neck or collapsing your wrist towards you to support the instrument.  

This is a googled page that shows when you scroll down what I mean with holding the violin between the fleshy part of the thumb and the base knuckle of the pointer.


Fort Lauderdale
July 13, 2015 - 10:50 am
Member Since: September 26, 2010
Forum Posts: 16062

With my students I try to emphasize the idea of balance. Not supporting the instrument solely using your body but balancing the instrument lightly between the end button side and the neck with your left hand. When necessary for shifting and so forth, you support it but without stress.
The instrument can rest anywhere between the index finger and thumb and great players do it in all kinds of ways. I even use the fat of my thumb at times if I'm way up on the instrument or I want wide, fat, slow vibrato instead of fast finger or wrist vibrato.
I recommend that you experiment and discover what is most comfortable for you. Just be careful not to clinch the instrument anywhere. Not with your left hand and not with your jaw and collarbone either. As relaxed as possible.

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

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