When teaching string posture should always be on a teachers’ mind when developing young musicians. And the first thing beginners need to do before they even begin learning the bow hold and their instrument is how to sit properly in orchestra.
I have used these techniques for the past ten years now, They have proven to be wonderful! Join me on a journey to developing string orchestras where students play free of tension and with a wonderful posture. After reading this post don’t forget to also check our other posts that is meant to be step 2 on Developing Posture and Activities in the Orchestra Classroom.
The ability to sit properly when playing an instrument is important for your tone, good posture, and playing free of injuries. Whether you are a student or a teacher, read the tips below:
- Sit toward the middle of the chair.
- Feet need to be squared and down on the floor. Younger children can put their feet on the instrument case if they cannot reach the floor.
- Hips need to be heavy into the chair. The hips take the weight of the whole body when seating. If that weight is not transferred correctly, this may lead to shoulder tension.
- Violins/violas need to turn so that their scroll is pointing toward the conductor. It helps if students stand up and point their scroll toward the teacher while aligning their eyes in that direction.Then they move their chair directly behind them so that when they sit down their position does not change.
- Back needs to be toll and flexible.
- You should have a feeling of movement as opposed to feeling tight in your body
- Start by modeling the seated posture for the students.
- Explain the points they need to watch.
- Have hem show you “bad posture” and then get to “perfect posture” This will help them practice and remember.
- Play “find the mistake”. The teacher presents a “bad posture” and the students need to find the mistake.
- Have a couple of students walk around the room and be “posture police”
Stay tuned for pictures with specific mistakes students make!