Squeezing / Creeping Violin Thumb


said: Feb 1, 2011
 16 posts

So, suddenly all my students have the issue where the violin thumb squeezes or creeps up and over the fingerboard or goes on its tip like the bow thumb. Most of them I’ve been able to correct with touch-and-drops (violin arm drops to make sure it’s the head holding up the violin); cotton balls for mousehole and soft touch; pennies when they remember to check it themselves; or just time. However, I have a few hold-outs. Any ideas?

Sara said: Feb 3, 2011
191 posts

Cornflake game: Place a corn flake between thumb and violin and play twinkle. If the corn flake hasn’t dropped and isn’t broken at the end, they can eat it. Of course, you may want to start slow on this—play on note of a variation and build on that.

Place a fuzzy sticker where the thumb should be and tell them to “pet the fuzzy sticker”.

Draw a face on “Mr. Tom Thumb” with his eyes on the tip of the thumb and a big smile. Tell the student Tom is a friendly, happy fellow, but VERY shy and must hide his smile.

Put a band-aid on the thumb to straighten Mr. Tom thumb’s back. Kids especially like the design band-aids. I usually use the smallest one possible.

Hope this helps!

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

said: Feb 9, 2011
 16 posts

Thanks- those are great ideas! I especially like the cornflake game. :)

Irene Mitchell said: Oct 10, 2011
Irene Mitchell
Suzuki Association Member
Violin, Viola
Dallas, TX
111 posts

love the cornflake game, and just found BABY GOLDFISH at the store!
(just like normal pepperidge farm goldfish, but
they’re the perfect size for little hands) put between L thumb/neck of violin;
if they can keep it intact thru the whole song/exercise they can eat it…
it’s a little messy (crumbs on carpet), but fun; releases tension from L thumb.

Irene Mitchell

Ruth Brons said: Oct 10, 2011
Ruth Brons
Suzuki Association Member
Violin, Viola
Livingston, NJ
148 posts

Human bodies like to work in symmetry,
so it is not surprising that the left thumb wants to be bent just like the right thumb is so highly praised for doing.
I am definitely game to try this edible exercise with one or two of my little ones.
Thanks, ladies!

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