Bluerose, my friend!!! You are so welcome! I’m so impressed with what you are able to do with the injuries you’ve described! I don’t know much about the electric violins, or how to make them sound better, but I don’t think a shoulder rest would effect bow arm function. I could be wrong about that. Just check when you’re playing up bow that the hand goes up first and the elbow follows. Not elbow first. Elbow leads on the down bow. It falls closer to the body, and the hand comes down after it.
If you can imagine yourself in the kitchen standing in front of a high shelf. On the shelf is a cookie jar 🙂 You reach for the cookies. As you reach, the hand goes up and the elbow follows. Now you have a cookie. YAY! As you pull down, the elbow falls first and the hand follows. This is very natural, just the way our body works. If you reach again, trying to let the elbow go first, you see how awkward and ‘inefficient’ is that approach to cookie stealing. 😉 The same is for violin. On the UP bows, let the bow hand go UP first, if you spend enough bow, your elbow will also rise to follow the hand. As you pull DOWN bow, the elbow leads first and the hand follows. Two main objectives are in play. One, to use the body in as natural a motion as possible, similar to other activities in life. Two, to always keep the elbow under the hand, whether on UP or DOWN bows.
I look forward to chatting with you again soon!
Electric Violins at Superior Violins!