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    A few years ago, I severely injured my neck, which made holding the violin with a chin rest VERY painful. A friend of mine who plays suggested the VioStrap, a violin neck strap that attaches just below the fingerboard and then hooks with safety release buckles around your neck. At first it was odd using, but I got so used to it, that even when my neck healed, I have continued to use it. I use it mainly on my electric Zeta Strados. Any one else use these?

    #9121 Reply

    DeaconBlue
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    Being a newbie and a gadget freak, I usually look for or “invent” a work around for problems I run into. As far as the violin goes, I have spent a small fortune in shoulder and chin rests, looking for a combination that keeps the violin secure in the proper position, without digging into my collar bone, or threatening to slide done the front of my chest. After a long Internet search (which turned up almost nothing), I ran across Mark Woods neck strap that he developed for his electric violins. Since it is patented, and not available as an after market purchase, I put together my own rather low cost system that consists of a Huihuang wood shoulder rest, an adjustable leather guitar strap, and 2 slide lock carabiners. In use, the carabiners are attached to the legs of the shoulder rest (make sure that the shoulder rest is securely attached to the violin) – with the strap going up over the left shoulder around the back, and up under the right armpit, as shown in the contest video. The hold is hands-free, and rock solid. No more sore neck from trying to keep the violin from slipping. It also frees the left hand completely from having to support the violin, making it much easier to relax the left hand, as well as, play any kind of vibrato. The entire cost was about $60 for the shoulder rest, the leather guitar strap, and the carabiners. You could get away much cheaper if you already have a shoulder rest with legs and perhaps an old guitar strap sitting around somewhere. The carabiners make on and off a snap (literally), and it works so well, that you can practice/play for hours with no discomfort.

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