What causes this misalignment and pressure on a nerve? Stress! Whether it is physical, chemical, or emotional, stress can cause dysfunction within the nervous system. Musicians have major physical stress. Repetitively playing an instrument in the same position and utilizing the same muscles over and over again puts major physical demands on the body. RSI, either combined with poor posture ergonomics or independent of each other, is direct physical stress that can cause subluxations in the spine or joints of the upper extremities.
“Hearing protection is for sissies,” says my guitar playing friend Pete. He casually signs the internationally understood words for “earplug” and “feather weight” in my direction. Years of thunderous nights in tiny clubs have left him aurally impotent. It’s sad to see. With proper ear protection, his life may have turned out differently.
Blisters are small, raised lesions in which fluid collects under the skin. They are frequently caused by friction, so it is no surprise that musicians, from drummers to guitarists to clarinet players get blisters on their hands. Though they are relatively minor injuries, blisters can cause enough discomfort to curb your playing.
To cope with the daily stress of juggling rehearsals, performances, family, and a day job, musicians may want to seek help from sports psychology consultants, known for assisting athletes.
The Alexander Technique is a method of learning that addresses inefficient habits of movement and patterns of accumulated tension that interfere with your innate ability to move easily.
Playing the bugle requires more than lips and lungs. Playing piano requires more than nimble fingers. Really, playing any instrument at all requires sound mind and body. If you want to play well, you’ve got to take care of yourself—and I mean your whole self. Exercise is important, and so is diet. Whether you’re trying to memorize a song or your tendonitis is flaring up from too much guitar playing, there’s an herb or vitamin for that. Here are just a few of the areas you can begin improving after a visit to your local health food store.
Most musicians are aware of hearing protection, but what can they do about already damaged hearing? Can hearing aids be worn while making music?
Carpal tunnel syndrome is a condition in which there is pressure on the median nerve—the nerve in the wrist that supplies feeling and movement to parts of the hand.
When people listen to music from other cultures, they often find it uncomfortable or less pleasant, or they may not “get it.” Most modern musicologists would say that this is because the way we make music and respond to it is learned, and therefore specific to our culture. Yet, many people, including noted composers, claim […]