I was reading an article the other day about performance anxiety, and those who know me (especially my students) can imagine my chagrin when the author referred to the “twisted neck” position, and to violin playing as a “tension-created” activity. Yikes.
Tension is exacerbated by fear. Tension is a root cause of many of the things we fear about performing…. The old catch 22. Tension also leads to injury (and makes for an unpleasant tone). Doesn’t it seem foolish to make tension part of the ground work for technique? Why not address causes rather than symptoms?
If practice is calm and deliberate, if we really pay attention to, and analyze how we are using our bodies, each of us can be our own best teacher. Just because we were taught to do something a certain way, doesn’t mean it should be considered sacred. We must question and examine things we take for granted.