In September 2018 the NSO Health and Wellness Committee (Newfoundland Symphonic Orchestra) was created and since then, we discovered some of the challenges that musicians have in the orchestra. In 2019 the NSO-H&W Committee started Body Mapping mini-workshops for orchestra’s members!
Jan. – Apr. 2019
Jennifer Johnson, Lauren Smee, and Gabriela Sanchez, licensed Andover Educators and members of the NSO-H&W committee, presented different topics related to common pains and injuries in musicians including: shoulders and neck tension, back pain, and tendonitis in the forearms/hands.
For now, we have completed these series and we encourage participants to continue applying the information to their playing and to tell students and colleagues about Body Mapping!
Women musicians! Let’s get together and learn about our bodies!
The body map is a representation of the body in the brain, the perceptions that we have of our own bodies that influence our movements for any activity. Interaction with people and all the messages from the “outside” shape the body map, our own perception of the self.
So, bodies are not just bones, muscles, and organs; bodies also have different meanings.
There are numerous stories in our journey of music making. Some of them make us feel complete and encourage us to keep going and enjoy our music. However, there are also times when we face situations that make us believe that we are not talented (“enough”) and lose our confidence.
If you want to know how these experiences feel in your body, try the next exercise!
Barbara and William Conable, who are Alexander Technique teachers and developers of Body Mapping, are the authors of How to Learn the Alexander Technique: A manual for students. They explain common misperceptions in the body that musicians have that cause them tension. The part for percussionists says: Continue reading Are percussionists the freest instrumentalists?→
A few days ago I remembered how important it is to know the right way to use our tools, so that we don’t hurt ourselves. By tools I mean several things, from a hammer and pliers to the instruments we play, sticks and mallets, bows, microphones, etc. Mics weren’t in my awareness until the last time that I went to a show. Continue reading Are you tense in your neck?→