Our Vacationspacer
PEDAGOGY instruments musicianship books

Instrument Care
The Case
Bow Hair
The Bridge
Instrument Repair

Purchasing an Instrument
nstrument Sizing for Children

Strings and Instrument Accessories
Types of Strings
Changing a String
Fine Tuners
Chin and Shoulder Rests

Bows and Rosin

Purchasing an Instrument - Youth Sizes

For children, string instruments are available in smaller or fractional sizes, to allow for students to acquire technique on an instrument that suits the length of their arms and fingers. As a student grows, so should the size of the instrument they study on.

For violins, sizes begin at the 1/32 size, and continue in increments as follows: 1/16/ 1/8/ 1/4, 1/2, 3/4, 7/8, and 4/4, or a full-size violin. These sizes do not actually correspond to the true sizes of the instruments. For example, a 1/16 size is actually about half the size of a full size violin.

Small violas are available in 11, 12, 13, and 14 inch lengths.

Cellos are available in 1/8, 1/4, 1/2, 3/4 and full sizes. Basses are available in 1/8, 1/4, 1/2, 3/4, and 7/8 sizes. The 3/4 bass is the standard professional size. 4/4 basses are very rare.

If the instrument is too large, it can cause fatigue, tension, and hinder progress.

To determine if the violin or viola is the correct size, ask the child to reach under the instrument while holding the instrument in playing position. The teacher can assist the student with holding the instrument, if the student is a beginner. If the student extends the palm outward, the scroll should touch the base of the palm of the hand. The student should be able to reach both their middle fingers around the scroll, while maintaining some bend in the elbow.

PREV | 1 | 2 | NEXT

Pedagogical Information | The Instruments | Teaching Strategies | Books and Information | Home
Copyright © 1996-2013, Michael Hopkins. All Rights Reserved.