TIP: WATCH YOUR RIGHT HAND!
Do you find it hard to play quickly, however much you try? Even if you do lots of practice? Do some of your notes sound very flat and you can't make out why?
One thing you could be doing is resting your right hand fingers on the recorder when they're not being used. This is quite a common thing for people to do, as you may feel you need to support the instrument, but all it does is slow you down! If you need to support the recorder, rest the little finger of your right hand on the top of the bottom joint (the highest point of the decoration, above the hole) as this is the finger that is used the least. This leaves your other fingers ready to be used whenever they are needed.
If you rest all or some of your right hand fingers on the recorder, you are having to make TWO movements to get the fingers onto the holes when they are needed: one to lift the fingers up, and the second, to adjust and put them down over the holes. If your fingers are waiting just above the holes when they're not being used, then you only need to make ONE movement to get them to cover the holes.
Also, if you keep your right hand fingers on the instrument when they're not needed, then this effects the tuning. For example, if you try to play a G on the descant (so left hand thumb and fingers 1, 2 and 3 of the left hand), but you are resting your right fingers on the instrument which are partially covering the holes, then the G sounds very flat! Practice in front of the mirror to see if this is what you do!
Give this a go and see if it helps! Good luck! Emma @ Recorder Helpdesk!
1/11/2020 02:27:36 pm
I wonder what you think about clip on thumb rests?
2/10/2020 01:34:11 am
I feel that its better to start with a thumbrest and if its really necessary you can later play without it. There are too many posture problems that results from poor instrument support.
2/29/2020 10:02:52 am
Hi, I totally agree with you. If you feel your fingers keep moving up the recorder, then try using a thumb rest. As you say, this will prevent bad posture habits, which can be difficult to unlearn afterwards. A thumb rest also takes away some of the weight of the instrument which can help with hand position too.
2/29/2020 09:59:24 am
Hi, I'm so sorry for my tardy response... I think thumb rests can be a very good thing, although I know there are some who don't like them at all. They prevent the right hand from creeping up the instrument and getting in the wrong place. Personally, I've never used them, but, what I do use for larger, heavier instruments - such as my voice flute and baroque pitched tenor - is my own hand support creation. It works brilliantly to just take away a bit of the weight of the instrument but doesn't restrict finger movement in any way. I'll post a photo soon. I hope this helps!
3/23/2020 08:07:20 am
I think thumb rests can be a very good thing, although I know there are some who don't like them at all. They are very good at preventing the right hand from creeping up the instrument and getting in the wrong place. If you want to add a plastic thumb rest to a wooden recorder, I would suggest you file down the edges of the plastic thumb rest to make it smoother, so it doesn't scratch the wood of the instrument. I hope this helps.
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Hi, I'm Emma Murphy & I'm a recorder player. I've taught for many years so have lots of answers to lots of recorder problems! JUST ASK!