Into the vibe

Sunday, 23 April 2017 07:00

Ergonomics

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"Can' t you make a more lightweight vibraphone?"

This is my most heard comment from vibists. The reason is that vibists suffer from back problems. 
I have looked into this matter a lot, and came to another conclusion than what you would expect:  it' s not really the carrying of the weight of the instrument alone that makes your back hurt.

 

It is the wrong posture most vibists have standing behind their instrument.

Any physiotherapist will tell you this.

I see many vibists placing their right foot in the center of the instrument, and leave it there at all times. When playing in the highest area, the right foot still is on the same position. And to be able to keep that position, the left foot is moved beyond the right foot, changing the balance of the entire body.  This will cause bending your spine in an awkward and unnatural shape

If you keep your right foot always at the position where it is meant to be (right of the left foot, or at least close to the left foot), you will keep your spine in its natural shape, and your body in its most ergonomic posture.

Another thing I found more comfortable is having the bars tilted in a shallow angle. When I look at a lot of other percussion instruments (timpanies, drums, bongos, etc), I see the playing surface is tilted towards a more convinient angle. When I came up with the carbonVibe in 2010 or so, I took the chance to apply tilted bars to that vibraphone, and found many vibists loved the comfort. Since then all our models are provided with these tilted bars, at a shallow angle of just 2 degrees. 

All for the benefit of the player.

Stay tuned!

Read 1176 times Last modified on Wednesday, 10 January 2018 12:09
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