Wednesday, March 12, 2008

16: Progress Report (3 Months)

Here's the short summary of this month: I'm still making progress, but I lost one week to the pain in the back, and one week to a surfing vacation in Hawaii.

Pain in the Back -- Solved?

The practicing-related pain in the back continued to get worse. Some of my jazz gigs were torture. Assuming that the basic cause is bad posture, I worked on several ways of solving it.

First was to make a wedge, to put on the piano bench, that would tilt my torso forward, and force me to sit up straight.

That didn't really do it, since I could still sit in such a way that allowed me to slouch.

I then tried putting together my piano bench such that it was tilted, and putting it end-on to the piano.

This was just too uncomfortable.

Finally, I found the solution: Use a chair.

I was surprised to find that my computer chair, at full height, was the same height as my piano bench. If I sit with my back supported by the back of the chair, the pain is much less. I had one three hour piano gig with no pain at all.

I expect this will solve my problem. Another thing that should help is a week away from the piano. I implemented this cure by flying to Hawaii with my wife for a week of surfing, hiking, and drinking.

Hawaii Vacation

We got back yesterday, so it's now back to work with two hours per day of sight-reading!


Anonymous said...

I've been reading this blog top to bottom, and thoroughly enjoying it. I'm also older, and making a third charge at sight reading. This blog is very inspirational.

Anton said...

That´s a Yamaha P-80? I had one, it had a very heavy touch and improved my technique enormously, but sadly the keys stuck all the time, so finally I got changed to something else. You´ve had that problem?