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How to Keep the Space between your Index Finger and the Neck of your Violin

Zlata Brouwer

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Published: October 13, 2015 at 9:53 AM [UTC]

In this episode of Violin & Viola TV I answer a question from my Violin & Viola Academy student Ryan. He asks...
I am having trouble keeping space between my index finger and the fingerboard when playing on the lower two strings. Any tips?

The assumption that there should always be space between your index finger and the fingerboard is not really correct. In the video I show you exactly how the violin should rest in your hand.

Your violin should rest on your collar bone mainly and should be supported by your left hand. The contact points are the lowest knuckle of your index finger and your left thumb. These two are your reference points for the position you are playing in and support the violin at the same time.

The advantage of supporting your violin also with your left hand is that it’s stable, comfortable (you don’t strain your neck too much) and your intonation will be better (research says). And no, it won’t get in the way of your vibrato if you do it right.

Don’t hold your violin just with your chin and shoulder. This is true for the violin, but even more for the viola as it’s bigger, longer and heavier.


Is this video helpful to you? Please let me know in the comments below! If you like it, share it with your friends!



PS: Do you have questions or struggles on violin or viola playing? Post a comment below or send an e-mail to and I might dedicate a Violin & Viola TV episode to answering your question!

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