Solution to back problems from foot stool use

Ergonomics and Posture for Classical Guitarists, Aches and Pains, Injuries, etc...

Solution to back problems from foot stool use

Postby stan » Sat Jul 30, 2011 12:51 pm

I'm not sure if people are still concerned about back problems due to foot stool use, but Judicael Perroy has a GREAT solution. Just look this
"Judicael Perroy : J.S. Bach - Keyboard Partita No. 2 - Sinfonia" up on the internet and watch!
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Re: Solution to back problems from foot stool use

Postby Sean W » Sat Jul 30, 2011 1:36 pm

Just saw it....I have to admit that at first it looks kinda funny. But it makes sense. Certainly helps if you can play well...diminishes the ?!?!? factor.

I usually prop a pillow under the guitar. Of course, I'm no concert player. I'm sure the concern with an instrument slipping while right in the middle of a performance would cause a person to think about using all the various solutions out there with care. I definitely am one that suffers from back pain when trying to use a footstool. 30 minutes and that's it.

Very interesting solution that Perroy has...

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Re: Solution to back problems from foot stool use

Postby MurrayK » Mon Aug 01, 2011 6:17 am

Nice playing, but wouldn't he just be better off with a lower Chair? In the end, his left foot in only marginally higher than his right.

Like being on stilts. Nice trick, but I find the Guitar difficult enough already without adding height & balance to the mix. :D
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Re: Solution to back problems from foot stool use

Postby benessa » Mon Aug 01, 2011 7:21 am

Terrific player! But, honestly, a lower chair would do it. I'd rather we all became Glenn Goulds, carrying around our own tatty chairs than to be reduced to this.

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Re: Solution to back problems from foot stool use

Postby DerekH » Mon Aug 01, 2011 8:06 pm

I often wonder about back pain with footstools.
I have to sit for 2 1/2 hours in concert when I play with my orchestra, and I never get back pain.

My secret?
I use a footstool.

I teach a lot, and though there ARE people with weak backs, a lot of those who get back pain get it because they lift the left leg by tilting the pelvis. As soon as the spine is curved, the muscles supporting it are in constant tension and these are responsible for a lot of the pain and twinges.

I used to ride a pedal cycle a lot, and you could see the cyclists riding in front of you divide into two camps - those who twisted their spine and those who sat perfectly still and let the hip joints do the work. I can pretty much predict which group got exhausted first.

If you have back pain, humour me with this experiment...
Sit on a chair and pretend to pedal a cycle, lifting and lowering alternate legs.
Set up your camera to take a short video of you from the rear.
If you get back pain from a footstool and if you see your spine move at all doing this, I think we have the root cause. My spine doesn't move at all.
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Re: Solution to back problems from foot stool use

Postby KenK » Tue Aug 02, 2011 6:23 pm

2 Footstools!
That's kind of funny.

I use a Gitano support.
I love the thing.

At some gigs I bring a bar-type stool that's about thigh high.
This particular one's just right for me.
I use the rungs to keep the legs up.

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Re: Solution to back problems from foot stool use

Postby Kjetil Heggelund » Tue Aug 02, 2011 11:32 pm

I don't have back problems but use a footstool. Maybe it's because I go to karate-training 2 times a week! Maybe it's because I don't practice too much at a time...
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Re: Solution to back problems from foot stool use

Postby dogonjon » Mon Aug 08, 2011 9:00 pm

I've seen the dual stool. It looks so weird you can only think "that guy is weird". I like my strap when my legs tire of a footstool. I find that with a foot stool I have to sit so my butt hurts but my leg doesn't fall asleep. Having the right chair is important. I like it flat with no contour, my favorite chair is actually an end table.
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Re: Solution to back problems from foot stool use

Postby MatejP » Tue Aug 09, 2011 10:00 am

I as well developed some serious back pain of a footstool and cant play more than 30 mins... and then I see how people speak of their solutions and specialized chairs they made for themselves and I cant help myself not to think that 100 years ago people who played then couldn't have all that stuff we had and all the equipment we use to make sure we adopt the famous sitting position with the left leg raised on stool etc... I think we should individually develop our own way, the one most comfortable to us the one that allows the optimal performance because that was exactly what old masters did- and they fought about it a lot as each one found his position the best to play... That is why they could free themselves and develop a special relationship with the guitar, do music with deep pleasure... I experimented and found my position, I hold the guitar on my right leg in a position as if I have a gitano. It works for me very well.
Experiment guys, find your won way!!
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Re: Solution to back problems from foot stool use

Postby GaryChappell » Thu Aug 18, 2011 9:48 pm

I too had the issue with back pain and my left foot would often go numb (results of back surgery). I ended up going with an Ergo Play Troster guitar rest to support the guitar while both feet are flat on the ground. This works well. I then had an issue with the base sliding off my leg so added a rubberized cloth on my leg to keep it from slipping. Breaks to stand helps too.
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Re: Solution to back problems from foot stool use

Postby tomjtx » Sat Aug 20, 2011 5:02 pm

You beat me to the punch on the ergo play troster.
I've been using one for about 3 years now and I could never go back to a footstool.

Some of my students are using one as well.
In fact, I just bought a second one at the Iserlohn festival. They are only about 50.00 in Germany.

Tom
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Re: Solution to back problems from foot stool use

Postby Tomzooki » Sun Aug 21, 2011 5:20 am

A lot of back problems are attributed to the footstool but are caused by something else. In fact the first back pain cause for guitarists is the angle with which they hold their guitar. For most, the plan of the guitar is almost parrallel to the plan of the lower part of the body, so they have to twist their spine to the left in order to play. It is hard to explain in words (and harder for me, I speak french) but look at it the next time you play. That twist of the spine is the cause of the major part of classical guitarists's back pain. The solution: hold the guitar otherwise. For me a simple change in the angle I mentioned ended in the disapearance of my back pains. I had to adapt to a neck farther of my face, but in the end it is just perfect because the left arm has more efficiency in that position.

So just make sure your shoulders are in line with your hips :wink:
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Re: Solution to back problems from foot stool use

Postby thendrix » Tue Nov 22, 2011 2:35 am

(I dont know if there are other similar products, but) I love my Ergoplay (Tappert). I will never ever go back to a foot stool...
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Re: Solution to back problems from foot stool use

Postby AndreiKrylov » Thu Nov 24, 2011 11:56 pm

Why would you not consider playing in standing position?
It will be more natural and ergonomical and help alleviate back pain,,, :)
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Re: Solution to back problems from foot stool use

Postby DerekH » Fri Nov 25, 2011 7:52 pm

AndreiKrylov wrote:Why would you not consider playing in standing position?
It will be more natural and ergonomical and help alleviate back pain,,, :)


And when did you see a Symphony Orchestra playing standing up, and a restaurant serving diners standing up. Do you watch television standing up?

It's far better to sit with a straight spine rather than a twisted pelvis, and far better to sit than stand. And far better to try to solve problems properly rather than suggest we all stand up... :)
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