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The insensitivity of some in responding to the original post with tasteless jokes really is disappointing.

Regards,


BruceD
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BitWrangler, your comment is tasteless.

Thanks BruceD for recognizing the insensitivity of some people.

This post is getting a bit out of hand. What say we end it. Gaby Tu

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Wow, I didn't think it was that bad. I apologize if I offended, just poking fun at gender stereotypes (notice that my post was NOT in response to the original poster nor do I make any comment at all about her situation, Akira made a quip and I merely responded). And the reality is that my post is actually not unrealistic, well, at least from a factual point of view (gabytu never does explicitly state their gender, hence my response). Again, my apologies to gabytu and to any guys who do have more in certain areas of the upper body than they'd like.

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I'm sorry too if my remarks were... "sophomoric". I thought more about the physics ;-)

About sports: they may design to dampen more the vertical shocks of running, while the motions at piano are horizontal, and may have lower frequency (that of shifting musical passages). It may be well to test and check...

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Two pages on Campanella chest action?

I love this forum.

laugh


P.S. I can't decide whether the best thing about this topic is the subject matter itself or the fact that it was the amazing BruceD who, yet again, saved the day with an immediate and thoughtful reply. Are there no limits to his abilities?


"If we continually try to force a child to do what he is afraid to do, he will become more timid, and will use his brains and energy, not to explore the unknown, but to find ways to avoid the pressures we put on him." (John Holt)

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One more suggestion:

The Enell

It's sort of like a sports bra meets a corset, and it has Oprah's thumbs up. thumb


Music produces a kind of pleasure which human nature cannot do without. ~Confucius

Music is moonlight in the gloomy night of life. ~Jean Paul Richter
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If it's possible for this to be serious again - Playing the piano is an athletic activity, so restrictive clothing is a bad idea.

I still suspect strongly that the angle at which we hold the torso, distance to piano, what we do with the arms as we reach to the ends of the keyboard might present a fair amount of solution. For example, if I reach to the extreme left with my right and I think of moving my arm sideways I have less room than when I think I'm extending the arm forward. If I lean back then my upper arm goes more parallel to the torso so there's less room, but if I am more upright but have my arms very slightly in front of me then there is more room. Bench height. I have next to no training on the piano so I'm throwing this out for conjecture. Can there by variables in how we move or hold ourselves that would work to create more or less "room" for movement without crashing into oneself, so to say, but also be effective playing technique? Might working with a teacher who specializes in this aspect of technique, or simply how we use our bodies in playing (posture etc.) be fruitful, rather than discussing restrictive clothing?

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Akira, further clarification on the name Gaby. It is a French girl's name, and is short for Gabrielle. As I am French, I spell it ending with an "e". The Italien version is Gabriella, ending with an "a".

Back to the topic at hand. Reading Keystring's post, as well as that of others, I now agree that the solution may not be to use restictive clothing, but to address the issue of posture, and how we move our bodies.

Often some women have a problem when playing compositions requiring hands being crossed over each other--such as when the right hand plays the bass, and the left hand the treble. It is a most uncomfortable position to assume, and I am never sure whether to put the left arm over the right or the other way around.
Also I wonder if the distance one has the bench from the keyboard, as well as its height could be a factor?

Thanks for all the helpful comments on this question. It took courage for Ashdyre to post this problem, which is embarassing to raise but is a legitimate concern for some women who play the piano. Gaby Tu

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i think short women (or pianists) face many of the same challenges.

Sitting in the proper posture is not always the perfect solution. if must sit higher then most people i know just to reach the length of the keyboard particularly when crossing.


accompanist/organist.. a non-MTNA teacher to a few

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Quote
Originally posted by gabytu:
Also I wonder if the distance one has the bench from the keyboard, as well as its height could be a factor?
I think this is certainly so. I'm shortish (like apple*) and I find sitting further back is much more helpful than sitting higher.


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Quote
Originally posted by Mechanical Doll:
One more suggestion:

The Enell

It's sort of like a sports bra meets a corset, and it has Oprah's thumbs up. thumb
Did you see that they make a "vest" for men, too ? eek

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Quote
Originally posted by liszt's pinky:
Quote
Originally posted by Mechanical Doll:
[b] One more suggestion:

The Enell

It's sort of like a sports bra meets a corset, and it has Oprah's thumbs up. thumb
Did you see that they make a "vest" for men, too ? eek [/b]
Hey watch it, I got a public chastising for going in that direction.

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Thanks, I think that Currawong and Apple have a good solutions. I will try both suggestions,and experiment with different heights at the keyboard, as well as sitting further back. Hopefull I will arrive at a position that is best for me.

Possibly, tall people have longer arms than those of us on the short side, and that may make a difference. Gaby Tu

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Wouldn't want to make any comments at the expense of men, heaven forbid.

Personally, I think this thread has been very useful. The only time I have been offended is when a few were more than cavalier about reduction surgery. I'm not one to advocate mutilation on any counts--period.

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I will. For all those body builders out there - Let's hear it for man boobs!

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Quote
I think this is certainly so. I'm shortish (like apple*) and I find sitting further back is much more helpful than sitting higher.
Sitting further back would cause you to either lean forward more, or bring your arms further forward. Is there any physicsl or dynamics to that? (levers, forces, angle of arms?)

If women have a different centre of gravity and a torso that is shorter in proportion to the legs than men, is it possible that configurations that are good for male pianists are not ideal for female pianists? Or is this individual, just like the individual body types within any gender?

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Quote
Originally posted by keystring:
Sitting further back would cause you to either lean forward more, or bring your arms further forward.
I mentioned sitting further back in the context of apple's statement that "I must sit higher than most people i know just to reach the length of the keyboard particularly when crossing". In order to reach the length of the keyboard when crossing, I find a reasonable distance from the keyboard to be more important than height. Leaning forward is much better than leaning back, which is what you would have to do if you sat too close (in order to cross in front of your body, I mean).


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Thank you for the explanation, Currawong. That might be personally helpful. smile

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My wife once participated in an on-stage master class with Jazz pianist Tony Caramia (she was the student that day) and one of the things he stressed, in addition to posture and arm extension, was careful attention to pivot points. He advised trying to keep pivots from the shoulder to an absolute minimum. I suspect that's your problem and that its causing your upper arms to move unnecessarily towards center where their movements are restricted by your torso. His advice was to keep the pivot points as close to the keys as possible. So for hand-width reach, pivot from the palm and move only your fingers. You should be able to reach about an ocatve and a half pivoting from the wrist. Pivoting from the elbow will get you at least half the keyboard. As the pivot point moves farther out, it slows you down because you're moving more body parts. Moving your pivot point to your shoulder is almost as inefficient as pivoting from the waist, sliding over on the bench, or standing up. Unless you want to do these things for dramatic effect, they can often be avoided by bringing in your other hand to help out.

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Thanks for all the replies guys, my internet has been down forever and i havn't been able to check this and i'm freaking out cause my concert is only 1 more week away!!!

Also, i'm almost peeing myself from laughing so hard, you guys are funny, and no offense was taken by me if anyone is worried... i have an... interesting... sense of humour so this was all quite amusing to read smile

First off, breast reductin is a no no. i went through 2 years of physio therapy to build my back muscles to cope with my... size... because i don't want to get rid of them.

Duct tape... OW. tried it once never again

Corsets, yest they do hold them im place but they also lift them... movement is still visible

Sports bra, i was thinking about that... but what happens when i'm in a ball gown???

Pendulum earrings/bench - BEST IDEA EVER. though i bet that will be even more distracting, LOL.

I think the best way is to work on posture... i just don't know where to go, this piece has me constantly moving, it's hard to stay still... i move alot when i play to, i'm one of those dorky flowy people, lol.


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