speaking of thumbs…

Tiffany said: Aug 22, 2008
Tiffany Osborn
Suzuki Association Member
Violin, Suzuki in the Schools, Viola
Los Angeles, CA
41 posts

I would like to know what everyone’s thoughts are on the thumb placement beginning bow hold- “outie” or “innie” right away?

Sara said: Aug 27, 2008
191 posts

I keep their thumbs “out” until they can easily hold the bow with bent thumb, round pinky, long middle fingers. Then we move to the inside. Depending on age and level this move could take as long as into Etude or as soon as Lightly Row with an older beginner.
Hope this helps

“What is man’s ultimate direction in life? It is to look for love, truth, virtue, and beauty.” Dr. Shinichi Suzuki

Anne said: Sep 1, 2008
17 posts

Just my two cents from a parent’s perspective… My son started out at 3 with a teacher who taught outside thumb until Perpetual Motion. Things went as smoothly as could be expected. My daughter started out at 3 with a different teacher who started with thumb inside, and it was very hard for me to get her to keep a good bow hold through a whole piece. I was also difficult for her to hang onto and control the bow. At age 4 (she was around “Go Tell Aunt Rhodie”, I think) she switched to another, more experienced teacher, who put her thumb outside. For me as a parent it made all the difference—all of a sudden I felt I could really help her form and keep a bow hold. In other words, it may make as much difference for the parent, especially a non-violinist, as for the child to start small children out with an outside thumb. I don’t remember exactly when the thumb was put back in under her current teacher, but I think it was at least before the Minuets. I never have to remind her of the bent bow thumb now (the curvy bow PINKY is another story…)

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