Warming up and stretching: Adapted to musicians, how to avoid injuries.

THE BEST WAY TO AVOID INJURIES


In this post I will give you some warm up techniques and stretching exercises that you can put into practice when playing your instrument. It will help you to avoid injuries in the future.

Also you can read this post of our blog about relaxation techniques which can probably help you if you suffer from muscle pain: https://www.irenebejrod.com/blog/physiotherapy-ergonomics-alexander-method-how-they-help-in-the-life-of-a-musician/

It is very important to warm up and stretch before playing. The warm-up must consist of mobilizing the areas of the body that we are going to use so that they will be ready. In this way we will achieve more agility from the beginning of the study or audition and we will avoid that playing in cold could injure any muscle.

When you finish playing, you should always stretch your muscles. You need to relax the muscles, like that we will avoid possible
muscle contractures.

Warming up and stretching are two basic activities that one should always do before and after any physical activity that requires a certain effort, as in the case of playing an instrument or even singing.

The importance of taking care of the body is something that we should take into account from the beginning of the study or teaching of the instrument, we can apply this to the violin or any another instrument. We must instill in the student the practice of warm-ups and stretching from the first day they enter in the classroom.

“Diseases do not come to us from nowhere. They develop from small daily sins against Nature. When enough sins have accumulated, illnesses will suddenly appear”. Hippocrates

This is what will happen when we get used to “bad habits” since we started playing the instrument.

  Keep in mind that most adults who play an instrument start at the age of 5 to 8 years. So our body develops into “bad posture habits”, hence the importance of teaching the muscles which is the correct position. We achieve this by stretching, warming up and practicing sports such as Yoga, Pilates or Swimming.

If we do not teach the body what the right posture is, over the years injuries will appear and it will be very difficult to correct something that we have been doing wrong for 20 years.

Learn to unlearn and relearn. This can take us years. It is best to learn the right thing from the beginning to avoid injuries in the future.

Warm up: Do it before playing.

1. Mobilize the fingers of both hands. 10 repetitions.

2. Raise and lower the fingers of both hands, one by one. 10 repetitions.

3.Rotate the wrists. 10 repetitions.

4. Raise and lower the forearm. 10 repetitions.

5. Rotate the shoulders. 10 repetitions.

6. Bring your arms stretched out front and back. 10 repetitions

7.With the arms in a cross, move them drawing circles. 10 repetitions.

8. Turn the neck by turning right and left. 10 repetitions.

9.Move the neck looking up and down. 10 repetitions.

10. Move the neck from right to left, trying to stick the ear to the neck. 10 repetitions.

11. Say all the vowels exaggerating the movements of the face. 10 repetitions.

12. Fill and empty the voca with air. 10 repetitions.

13. Breathe vigorously attending to the movement of the diaphragm. 10 repetitions.

Stretches: Do it after playing.

1. Stretch the flexors and extensors of the fingers. 30 seconds.

2. With arms raised, grasping the right elbow with the left hand and vice versa, we pull back. 30 seconds with each arm.

3.With the left arm crossing the chest, we hold and pull it to the right and vice versa. 30 seconds with each arm.

4. Kneeling on the floor, we stretch our arms forward to the maximum. 1 minute.

5. Kneeling on the floor, put your right arm under your chest and stretch your left arm forward, leaving your right shoulder and face resting on the floor. 30 seconds with each arm.

6. With our legs spread, we hold our hands behind our backs and flex our trunk forward. 30 seconds.

7. We stretch the neck looking to the right and to the left. 10 repetitions.

8. We look up and then down. 10 repetitions.

9. Move the neck from right to left, trying to stick the ear to the neck. 10 repetitions.

10. We stretch the lips with the index fingers from the corner. 10 seconds.

11. We open our mouths to the maximum. 10 seconds.

12. Relaxation. Lying on the floor, sitting, or in a posture that allows us to keep our backs straight, we leave our minds blank and focus on breathing and the lightness of each part of our body. 1-2 minute (s).

Webgraphy:

Queteescuchen.com. Calentamiento y estiramientos para músicos. (2020): https://quetescuchen.com/calentamientos-y-estiramientos-para-musicos/

www.hospitalmanises.com. La importancia de los estiramientos en música. (2020): https://www.hospitalmanises.es/blog/la-importancia-de-los-estiramientos-en-musicos/

Bibliography:

Gonzalez Portillo, T. (2016). La guía del músico profesional. España: Gran Pausa.

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