"Bon Musica Shoulder Rest Best for Ergonomic Playing and Comfort"
Exclusive Product Review by Rhiannon Nachbaur Schmitt, Fiddleheads' Owner and Instructor
German-designed and German-made "BonMusica" shoulder rests are easily unsurpassed by any other brand or design on the market.
A padded base "hooks" over the player's shoulder, holding the instrument in place and helping the player avoid the instrument sliding down towards the chest. These rests promote good technique and hands-free stability for easy shifting and vibrato.
The metal "hook" can be manipulated to fit the contour of the player's shoulder. The bottom of the base is free from the anchoring "legs," so that can be independently adjusted as well.
(click on images for closeups).
The Bon Musica is adjustable in height, sideways slant, length over the shoulder and has a span to reach across various width violins or viola (within the instrument's size, 4/4, etc). The hook section can be placed in 3 different settings for players with sloped or small shoulders, or long or short upper bodies. (see photo on right, adjusters on underside)
Unlike models by Kun and most other rests, even the metal base itself can be manipulated to suit the player's unique body shape. The foam padding is highly resistent to wear and adds comfort.
Great for Left-Handed Players Too
Bon Musica shoulder rests, unlike most other brands, can easily be used for left-handed players. Just flip it around so the hook rests behind the right bout/side and enjoy a left-handed shoulder rest!
Players who use the Bon Musica need not raise their shoulder or tense their neck to hold the instrument in place. When the Bon Musica is properly adjusted, the player needs to simply lean his or her head into the chinrest and leave the shoulder loose and relaxed. The weight of the player's head will hold the instrument firmly in place with minimal tension to muscles or tendons.
Players who suffer from previous injuries or arthritis find enourmous benefit in using the Bon Musica as it allows the shoulder to remain relaxed yet keeps the violin held at the proper, higher angle, rather than drooping forward.
All players benefit from consistentcy in technique, which will aid in intonation, proper bow placement and muscle memory.
Because of their excellent ergonomics and sensible design, the Bon Musica rests are the shoulder rest I use and recommend to my violin & viola students.
A bit more advice for Bon Musica owners from Fiddleheads' Rhiannon Nachbaur Schmitt:
Snug as a Bug in a Rug
To get the most of your rest, make sure the pads touch as much of your chest & shoulder as possible. Gaps between your chest and the rest make the rest not as effective in holding the violin securely.
Ask your teacher to assist you in manipulating the rest into its optimum position or you may find our following articles helpful: