The Moving to the Beat exercises on page 12 of Violinworks Book 1 are useful for warming up and relaxing before you play. Make the movements along to a relaxing piece of music of your choice, or use the track below. Make sure your violin is positioned comfortably on your shoulder before you start. See below for more details.
Sliding your fingers up and down the strings.
- Position your hand at the end of the neck and let your fingers lightly rest on the A string.
- Slide your hand up the neck into the halfway position (see page 12). Allow your fingers to glide along the strings as you move your hand.
- Feel the edge of the fingerboard slide against the side of your thumb and the base of your first finger.
- Slide your hand back down to the end of the neck.
- Repeat several times, sliding your fingers along the strings in time to the music. The movement of your hand should feel effortless and the violin should remain still.
Swinging your left elbow from side to side
- Position your hand either at the end of the neck, or in the ‘halfway position’.
- Gently swing your elbow under the violin so that your left-hand moves to the G-string, then swing it the other way so that your hand moves over to E-string.
- Keep your forearm, wrist and left-hand in line with each other as your elbow moves.
- Allow your hand to rotate freely about the neck, while keeping the side of your thumb and the base of your 1st finger in contact with the neck (don’t lift them away).
- Make sure the crease at the bottom of your 1st finger stays resting against the E-string edge of the fingerboard – the base knuckle shouldn’t move above the level of fingerboard.
- Swing your elbow in time to the music, standing tall and keeping your shoulders relaxed.