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Piano bench height--standard difference to key height #933161
09/20/07 08:46 PM
09/20/07 08:46 PM
Joined: Dec 2006
Posts: 720
Iowa
J
joangolfing Offline OP
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joangolfing  Offline OP
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J

Joined: Dec 2006
Posts: 720
Iowa
I just got a new piano bench and its one inch shorter than my original bench.

My piano keys are 30 1/2" from the floor.
My new bench is 19 3/4" from the floor.
My old bench is 20 3/4 " from the floor.
So the space between the bench and the keys is 8.75" and 9.75"

Is there a standard height for piano benches and a recommended difference between the bench and the keys? Even that 1" difference between my old and new benches seems significant.

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Re: Piano bench height--standard difference to key height #933162
09/20/07 11:57 PM
09/20/07 11:57 PM
Joined: Mar 2006
Posts: 7,639
Olympia, Washington, USA
John v.d.Brook Offline
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John v.d.Brook  Offline
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Olympia, Washington, USA
There is no standard height, because everyone is different. That's why better teachers recommend adjustable height benches. There is a recent thread on this subject you might want to look at.

By the way, my piano bench is by Lanzani. Here's their web page: http://www.ergonomicpianobench.com/IT/ITindex.html


"Those who dare to teach must never cease to learn." -- Richard Henry Dann
Full-time Private Piano Teacher offering Piano Lessons in Olympia, WA. www.mypianoteacher.com
Certified by the American College of Musicians; member NGPT, MTNA, WSMTA, OMTA
Re: Piano bench height--standard difference to key height #933163
09/21/07 03:08 AM
09/21/07 03:08 AM
Joined: Jan 2004
Posts: 4,264
Pretoria South Africa
btb Offline
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Pretoria South Africa
Here’s an interesting diagram showing the different bench heights and distances from the keyboard dependent on
1. Length of trunk (123 ... long, medium, short) and
2. Length of upper arm (123 ... long, medium, short)

web page

It will be noted that
The longer the trunk, the LOWER the bench should be
The longer the upper arm, the HIGHER the bench should be

38cms = 15 "
45cms = 17½ "
54cms = 21¼ "

As suggested by John ... an adjustable bench caters for all ... ensuring a STRAIGHT BACK AND HORIZONTAL FOREARM. Your new and old bench heights of 19¾ " and 20¾ " fall in the higher bench heights in relation to the diagram.

But if the new bench height is one inch lower than the old ... and you are comfortable with the old height ... would it not be advisable to simply add a cushion to make up the difference
in height.

Re: Piano bench height--standard difference to key height #933164
09/21/07 02:32 PM
09/21/07 02:32 PM
Joined: Apr 2007
Posts: 16,390
Boynton Beach, FL
Morodiene Offline
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Morodiene  Offline
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John:
That site is very interesting. I have recently read a book on posture, and to get people in balance, they use a little "booster" seat that tilts forwarrd much like that bench. How do you find it compares to the typical artists (adjustable) bench one normally gets?


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Re: Piano bench height--standard difference to key height #933165
09/21/07 05:02 PM
09/21/07 05:02 PM
Joined: Jun 2004
Posts: 8,483
Ohio, USA
signa Offline
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Ohio, USA
that Lanzani bench makes sense! i already noticed that i had to sit on the edge of chair or bench to be able to play at easy, which is virtually in that bench's position except i use only 1/3 of the sitting space rather than the full space as that bench.

Re: Piano bench height--standard difference to key height #933166
09/21/07 05:17 PM
09/21/07 05:17 PM
Joined: Mar 2006
Posts: 7,639
Olympia, Washington, USA
John v.d.Brook Offline
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Olympia, Washington, USA
Morodiene, I like it very much and I don't feel fatigued after several hours of practicing. It's on my living room grand, and you can see the corner of it on my Avatar. As I noted in another recent thread, I use Burghardt benches for my studio pianos.

http://www.burghardtbaenke.de/englisch/inhalte_englisch/inhalt_englisch.html


"Those who dare to teach must never cease to learn." -- Richard Henry Dann
Full-time Private Piano Teacher offering Piano Lessons in Olympia, WA. www.mypianoteacher.com
Certified by the American College of Musicians; member NGPT, MTNA, WSMTA, OMTA
Re: Piano bench height--standard difference to key height #933167
09/21/07 05:26 PM
09/21/07 05:26 PM
Joined: Apr 2007
Posts: 16,390
Boynton Beach, FL
Morodiene Offline
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I have a cheap adjustable bench that came with my piano, and its not really adjusting very well anymore! It hasn't been used very much, either! I have a more substantial one at home, which has gotten lots of use, but every once in a while it creaks and rocks a bit now.

Can I ask how much your benches cost?


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Re: Piano bench height--standard difference to key height #933168
09/21/07 05:27 PM
09/21/07 05:27 PM
Joined: Aug 2006
Posts: 777
Manassas,Va
193866 Offline
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Manassas,Va
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Sandra M. Boletchek 08/02/06
Re: Piano bench height--standard difference to key height #933169
09/21/07 05:46 PM
09/21/07 05:46 PM
Joined: Jul 2005
Posts: 1,094
England
S
swingal Offline
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England
To Joan Golfing.

My key top is 29½" the Bench is 25½" to the seat top. I'm standing height at 5' 8"

I do like to have my arms sloping down from my shoulder to the key tops and play with curved fingers but down into the keys, not much flat hand and not as a dog begging style, sort of grabbing at the keys as some people do, due to sitting too low as I see it.

swingal

Re: Piano bench height--standard difference to key height #933170
09/21/07 06:15 PM
09/21/07 06:15 PM
Joined: Jul 2006
Posts: 286
Chicago 'burbs
lalakeys Offline
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I've always preferred my bench to be on the "high" side, so that I can use the weight of my upper body to help me play louder chords. In college my friends always said that they could tell when I had been practicing on the recital-hall grand piano, because the artist bench was adjusted as high as it would go!

And I'm aware of at least a couple of concert pianists who like to play "up high"--including Awadagin Pratt, who travels with a STOOL.


Private piano & voice teacher for over 20 years; currently also working as a pipe organist for 3 area churches; sing in a Chicago-area acappella chamber choir
Re: Piano bench height--standard difference to key height #933171
09/21/07 06:59 PM
09/21/07 06:59 PM
Joined: Apr 2007
Posts: 16,390
Boynton Beach, FL
Morodiene Offline
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I have a very long back (I'm 5'7), so I usually have the seat a bit lower than most people. The key I think is to make sure that your wrist can be at a level position.


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Re: Piano bench height--standard difference to key height #933172
09/21/07 11:40 PM
09/21/07 11:40 PM
Joined: Jul 2007
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Atlanta
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Minaku Offline
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Atlanta
I used to sit up high, but after I got to college I realized I sat higher to compensate for poor technique in forte passages. I have since lowered my bench to the appropriate height and will, along with everyone else here, recommend an adjustable piano bench. Myself, I have an artist bench, and I love it to pieces. So does the cat...


Pianist and teacher with a 5'8" Baldwin R and Clavi CLP-230 at home.

New website up: http://www.studioplumpiano.com. Also on Twitter @QQitsMina
Re: Piano bench height--standard difference to key height #933173
09/22/07 11:33 AM
09/22/07 11:33 AM
Joined: Dec 2006
Posts: 720
Iowa
J
joangolfing Offline OP
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Posts: 720
Iowa
This has been an interesting set of comments to my question. I learned that it is somewhat measurable but also there is personal preference involved.


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