On this page you will find the most frequently asked questions to Violinist in Balance. For more detailed information, please click on the headings.
What to expect from your consultations
Clients come the Violinist in Balance consultations with hopes of improving playing comfort and technique. Here are some of the common questions that the clients have:
How long will it take to get my new equipment?
The consultation procedure, fittings and equipment check-ups take between 4 and 7 months. As we improve your equipment, you will be improving your playing and physical condition by continuous weekly private Alexander lessons with a certificated teacher near you. Only after the chin rest and the shoulder rest have been checked for its fit and effectiveness at the final consultations is it advisable to start playing with your new equipment.
Why do I need Alexander lessons?
Playing the violin challenges the balance of the skeletal muscular system. Most violinists or violists are accustomed to pulling their heads forward and down, clamping the instrument in place with their left shoulder, and raising or stiffening the shoulder girdle. These habits are often brought about partly by ill-fitting equipment, but do not automatically go away when the equipment is changed. Things like remembering where your head is best balanced on the spine, learning to free the neck and widen the visual field, to release long held tension in the back and shoulders are all essential to being able to use custom fitted equipment.
Why does it take so long?
Because your equipment is being built for you alone, careful measurements and playing analyses are made. These are then sent to our equipment technicians. Further adjustments to the chin rest are then made with you at the atelier. Only when the chin rest is done can we measure you for a shoulder rest. When you come to pick up your shoulder rest, a further check-up is made to insure that the chin rest and shoulder rest together work effectively. During the entire period of consultations, you will need to continue your Alexander lessons in order to be ready to use the new equipment.
A wide range of expertise is necessary in order to complete the process successfully. That is why we call upon experienced technicians to make your equipment.
Because the consultant and technicians all have full-time jobs outside of their work at Violinist in Balance, they work outside of daily office hours. To meet the demand of the client, we have developed a way of working over time that allow us to finish equipment within the given time frame, depending on the availability of the client for the choice of appointments provided.
Will the equipment help me with my upcoming audition/concert/competition?
In order to accustom yourself to using the new equipment, it is not advisable to plan to use it immediately for important playing engagements. We advise choosing a more restful period to try out your new equipment. Most players report that they can get used to the improved instrument position within two weeks. However, it is generally wise to plan to take some months to fully accustom yourself to securing the instrument with the new equipment. Old habits of clamping onto the instrument need time to be unlearned with careful daily study and help from your Alexander teacher. We also provide additional playing consultations for our clients who wish extra guidance during this period.