What if I tell you that your height can play an important role in how melodious you can play the violin? What if I tell you that your violin can cause you an injury in the long run if you often raise your shoulder in order to take your instrument closer to your jaw? That’s what the best violin shoulder rest helps you for.
Being wonderful is about being creative while being creative is about being comfortable. A musician knows how important a comfortable positioning maybe, in playing a musical instrument. You cannot fit in the flow if your positioning is not comfortable.
You can not leave the neck of the violin while holding it horizontally using your left hand, which results in a decrease in the mobility of your thumb. Positions e.g. Arcos and pizzicatos require a fluent use of the thumb, so do the vibratos.
If you have a more generous neck length which every person above 5 feet of height may have. Then you need to raise your shoulder in order to take your instrument closer to your jaw every time during downshifts. It may cause muscular tension leading to an injury in the long term.
Table of Contents
- Best Violin Shoulder Rest 2021
- List of top 2021 shoulder rests
- Violin Shoulder Rest Buyer Guide
Best Violin Shoulder Rest 2021
A shoulder rest props up your violin, as a result, it does not slip from your shoulder and rises closer to your chin. Now holding the instrument is easier even if your thumb is not stuck with its neck and you can play more fluent and comfortable.
The selection of a right shoulder rest is more important. Definitely, you will not want to affect the vibrations of your instrument, which may result in softening the actual sound.
The wooden body of a violin, in resonance with the string vibrations transmitting through the soundpost, responds like a membrane.
If there is a shoulder rest attached with the body of the violin, which has more attached areas such as made of foam or sponge. Then it lowers the amplitude of the instrument, resulting into a sound you don’t want.
You need to use a shoulder rest made of a better combination of wood, carbon fiber, plastic, foam, or aluminum having less area of attachment. Of course, the prices vary accordingly.
There is a large range of options available in the market, with different sizes and adjustable features. A number of brands offer different sizes of shoulder rests to fit your instrument.
There is good news that you can usually exchange the feet over another shoulder rest. So do not worry if you like the feet of one and the shape of others.
Let me give you another good news that we arranged the best shoulder rest 2021 list for you. So that you can select and buy the best violin shoulder rest from the market according to your requirement. You can also check our most readable articles best pegs, bows bridges & Rosin for more accessories.
List of top 2021 shoulder rests
In order to help you choose the best for you, we have picked a list of Top 7 best selling shoulder rests. Let’s have a look;
Kun Original Violin Shoulder Rest
THENG Violin Shoulder Rest
Fiddlerman Collapsible Shoulder Rest
NANYI Violin Shoulder Rest
Classic Violin Shoulder Rest by MI&VI
CUSTEAM Shoulder Rest for Violin
Bonmusica 4/4 Violin Shoulder Rest
Kun Original is based on its latest handmade model, which has a practical design better saying uncomplicated.
For instance, It provides a delicate curve to fit on your shoulder gently to avoid slipping or displacing the instruments during downshifts.
Moreover, It’s made so affordable for everyone out there. People using Kun Original name it the cheapest the best.
Above All, it is easy to assemble the clips and more easy to put it away in the violin case. You can adjust it in three different positions according to your convenience.
It locks with the instrument by a patented locking device without touching the body of the violin. In other words, It lets the instrument throw its original sound.
It is available for VIOLA, VIOLIN 4/4, VIOLIN 1/2–3/4, AND MINI (1/8 & 1/4). Amateur, as well as professional players around the globe, ranking it as their favorite. As a result, it is a top seller product on amazon, which means a lot.
Another comment of a user was there, who share that they bought Kun Original for their daughter trusting the previous comments. After using a number of other brands, this is best in terms of quality, even the price is half than the local music store.
The purpose of sharing these comments was to stand with the campaign that it is a product preferred by the professional. As we have read in the first example of how a teacher recommended it and the beginners found it as what they were looking for.
Conclusively, It’s the best pick of today, in order to avoid all the handling problems of your instrument while wakening the magic with your fingers up.
Resultantly, It stops the instrument from falling off without putting any pressure on your chin and neck.
Theng shoulder rest is featured with EVA Foam, which is a standing first material to construct outfits and props around the world, which makes it a malleable support accessory.
In other words, this extra thick and extra soft material adds a long-lasting comfort to your playing experience.
Additionally, the gripping feet are made of silicone, which is non-skid and soft, Which means that this wonderful product will never cause a single scratch or damage to the body of your beloved violin.
Then shoulder rest is adjustable for both height and angle, Similarly, assembling and disassembling is very easy. In order to use it, all you need to do is; Adjust the width and height according to the size of your violin. Fix the rubber claw to grip the edges firm, and you are done. If you don’t feel comfortable, try changing the angle.
Moreover, it is compatible with 1/2 and 1/4 size violins and available in catchy black color.
Despite having lower prices, this shoulder rest does not come along to you, Also, you receive a Gift Package as well, which contains a violin practice mute made of rubber which is most useful to beginners, And a Rosin.
The practice mute makes the whine tolerable while practicing, while the rosin helps to enable maximized projection and extra clear bow articulation either you are playing the violin, viola, or cello.
Above all, every THENG shoulder rest comes up with a 12 months warranty, which guarantees 100% customer satisfaction. What else a customer may want.
Finally, I believe that if you do not want to put the extra money into your purchase, this three in one bundle is for you. Now, what are you waiting for?
We are going to talk about their most promising shoulder rest model. This wood made shoulder rest is the companion, your violin or viola may be dreaming of, lol.
Solid wooden body with strong rubber feet, having the fiddlerman’s logo engraved beautifully on it, is crafted to provide you with a life long comfort as soon as it comes into contact with your body.
Likewise, the previous product, this shoulder rest also offers you height adjustability for a custom resizing, In Addition, to being collapsible to fit in almost every violin case.
Moreover, for the best soothing experience, it is padded with premium quality foam, for which it becomes more comfortable to your collar bone while playing. It resonates very well with your instrument and it sounds more clear than with any other shoulder rest.
Weighing only 2.4 ounces, this wonderful product can work with 4/4 and 3/4 size Violins. Additionally, it’s also fittable with 13″ and 14″ Violas. This one is much cheaper than the other brands having the same comfortability level.
It’s the nearest match to the top seller “Kun” and “Everest” products. The finest wood finishing and the lightweight makes it a pretty fast shipping product every coming day on amazon.
Big names always come with big responsibilities, fiddlerman, understands that That’s why, they take the responsibility of customer’s satisfaction and offer a 12 months warranty to the customers, fully covered with fiddlershop. In other words, you are not going to lose your money.
Lastly, if you want a life long sturdy product at the lowest price, you should not let the stock finished. Go, grab it.
The size dimensions are 8 x 3 x 1.8 inches. This model is compatible with 4/4 and adjustable to 3/4 also.
It consists of high strength aluminum. In other words, it sustains life long with its original shape and looks as well as the color.
In addition, the shoulder pad has a bottom plate made of aluminum alloy, which is more ductile than wood or plastic. Resultantly, more adjustable with flat or less flat shoulders.
Moreover, the width is adjustable, so you can fix it for a variety of models of violins, as well, the shoulder position becomes more adaptable for it. Adjustable height is another key feature of this wonderful brand, which supports different neck sizes and it is smart enough to adjust with the thickness of clothes varying with the weather.
Its shoulder pad is famous for a more stable relationship between the shoulder and the rest. Which creates and comfortable grip on the instrument without tightening its neck.
It has the lowest starting prices, amongst all we have discussed so far. Along with, Thickened high-density wear-resistant sponge contact surface, it’s a beautifully designed shoulder rest that will grab your attention once you look at its picture.
Above all, along with 12 months warranty, you have customer services to help you through.
Selected Customer Reviews :
- Nice and adjustable, comfortable, works great. Wish the wood looked better with my violin, it’s just super glossy which kind of clashes with my violin. Almost seems like plastic. But it works as it should! By Tim
- Awesome product at the perfect price! By lucy78
- It works well. I haven’t had it fall off once. One of the hinges to fold the supports down pops out if I put it down too far, but I figure that it’s not that big of a deal as it pops right back in. As long as I don’t fold it down too far, it’s fine. All in all, I would recommend this item. The price is fair and the product works as promised, not to mention it looks so good on my violin. By Jessica Watters
The use of genuine maple hardwood takes the user to the best sense of experience along with a high comfort level. This one is suitable both for beginners and pros.
This ergonomically designed product is a result of efforts made by experienced musicians. It contains a curved support bar which is smooth enough, and the design of grip is more friendly and rational to your shoulder and chin position.
Moreover, having high-quality rubber feet prevents the instrument’s finish from scratching and scuffs.
Similar to previous examples, this one also is a collapsible one, so that it doesn’t need any extra space in your violin case to fit in. In addition, it becomes more responsive to instruments of different sizes and widths.
This particular model is available for 1/2 and 1/4 violins, and the 11” and 12” violas. Furthermore, the secure-fit hold helps you with three fixed settings to fit with different heights and angle positions of the musician.
MIVI is offering 90 days return warranty, which ensures the security of your finance you have put in to buy this item.
Here comes the one, in continuous competition with the rest of the top brands in the violin shoulder rest industry. Defeating another one with every coming day, increasing its sale rankings constantly, Custeam.
This is a piece of art I must say, a perfect combination of sturdiness and softness building a high comfort level for players without affecting the performance or damaging the skin of your instruments.
For instance, the soft silicone gel material is used in the feet coating, which better protects the body of your instrument and prevents scratching or scuffing. In addition to being foldable to best fit in your violin case.
Moreover, the height is adjustable from a beginner to a pro requirement, as well as from a kid to an adult player.
So do the angle is, to get a perfect positioning and grip on your instrument to match the need. Assembling and disassembling is easier even a kid can do that himself.
This product is the best fit with 4/4 violins and easily adjustable to 3/4 as well.
As we know, that every skill needs permanent practice to be best at. And often the practice sessions are as long as hours. In that case, the player needs a perfectly restful and comfortable condition to go that long with the job. If your tools are not helping you during the job, soon you will be fed up and need to stop.
Therefore, This shoulder rest by Custeam is especially constructing for having long sessions with practice without being painful. Its ergonomic design plus high elasticity EVA Foam pad is made to maintain a perfectly comfortable positioning with your shoulder so that you will never feel tired or painful.
The makers have kept in view the shape of the human shoulder while making it. Similarly, The base is made of high-quality resin.
Above all, if you buy this shoulder rest it will not knock on your door alone, Every package has intimate gifts related to the needs of violinists e.g. teachers’ students along with your shoulder rest in beautiful packing, to make you happier.
It’s a 2.3 ounces product with an 8 x 2.4 x 2 inches dimension, the complete package comes to you weighing 5.6 ounces approximately. You can see, it’s such a lightweight thing even having variables with it.
You can say that it’s a “playing with words”, but believe me there is a huge difference between being expensive and being not cheap, and that difference is all, what a buyer needs to understand.
BonMusica is a well know brand in the violin shoulder rest industry. They have created a more friendly piece of art to enhance your comfort level.
Its a more user-friendly design to set up with variations of your shoulder shape. An enhanced range of adjustments provides you a more perfect positioning without putting extra effort.
Made of Germany, this piece of art is anatomical in nature with a precisely adjustable curvature. Additionally, geometrically formed feet have the ability to grip your instrument so friendly and there is no harm to the finely finished skin of your expensive instrument.
Furthermore, Its base is padded with highly comfortable foam material and the curve is employable to the exact contour of your shoulder. Being resistible to wear, provides ultimate hands-free stability making you forget the fear of dropping or slipping during your shiftings.
Above all, Bonmusica shoulder rest has various unique features, For instance, this is a thing, equally useable for Left Handed Players. This only feature can multiply its importance and useability, still, that’s not all.
Moreover, it is perfectly suitable for players who are suffering from shoulder injuries or arthritis. It helps to stay comfortable along with providing appropriate height and angle as well as the grip to avoid dangling.
Bonmusica shoulder rest is available for 1/2, 1/4, 3/4, 4/4 sizes. Similarly, its height and width are adjustable to attain an appropriate placement for players of different heights and body built-ups.
Finally, this is a “one for all” product.
Before buying a violin shoulder rest, there may be questions in your mind that should be clear to make the right decision. Here is some guideline to help you choose the best for you.
1) What is a violin shoulder rest:
As it reflects from the name, its an accessory a violin may rest on while attached. It frees up your should to carry the instrument preventing it to slip or droop forward, as well as provides a better grip on it allowing your fingers to move freely while shiftings or vibratos.
As you do not need to keep holding the neck of your instrument all the time which keeps your thumb busy and obstructs the fluent moves.
2) Should Use or Should Not Use Shoulder Rest:
Well, there are basically two schools of thought, who have the opposite opinions to the question, whether one should use a shoulder rest to play the violin or not?
Mostly the violinists who play early music and are mentally tied up with the old traditional style of playing, do not want to use a shoulder rest. But there is a large number of players including teachers and professionals who recommend using it for better performance.
As it helps the grip of your instruments while playing with the strings to create difficult melodious variations, moreover, it prevents painful muscle tension and lets you play longer comfortably. So, why not? For beginners its a “must”, so that they can concentrate on learning the skill instead of learning how to avoid slipping.
3) Which is best for you:
Answering that is a tricky thing, as the need varies from person to person. In order to meet those requirements, the makers of shoulder rest have created a number of variable features to make it helpful for everyone. Things needed to factor in while choosing the best for you may be as follows;
- Shoulder Rest Size:
Shoulder rest is made to fit both violins and violas, the standard-fit you will find is for most commonly used sizes e.g. 4/4 or 3/4. Most of the available brands are easily adjustable to different sizes, so this is not a point to worry about. Leaving a particular body size apart, every person needs a shoulder rest to position the instrument best.
Height adjustable feature helps the long neck and generous necks to place the violin closer to the jaw, to hold it well. You can easily increase or decrease the height of it, to lift it up according to your need. Without a height adjustment option, a shoulder rest may be a total waste.
The width can also be adjusted with almost every brand available out there, which helps to rationalize it with the size of your violin and placement of the feet as you want.
The angle of placement is another important feature to keep in mind, most of the brands provide a nice swivel feature which creates a twist margin between the violin and the shoulder rest sat on your shoulder so that you can easily adapt the best angular placement. Unavailability of this feature may turn your best-fit shoulder rest into a misfit for you.
- Shoulder Rest Material:
Shoulder rests are commonly made of plastic, foam or sponge, wood, carbon fiber, or aluminum. In order to make it user-friendly, the top brands use the best combination to enhance comfortability and adjustability.
Foot part made of hard material may leave scratches on the body of your expensive instrument. To hold it well, a foot must be gripped tight with the body, which applies force to it, so you need to choose a rest with feet made of a soft material.
Shoulder rest with the feet made of soft rubber or silicone gel works nicely with the purpose, as they normally do not apply to scuff or scratching to the instruments, and its skin receives almost no damage.
The base of a shoulder rest is the most considerable factor. It’s the point, if not decided wisely, may result in a negative impact on the sound of your instruments, and you know what does it mean.
A shoulder rest which has more area attached with the body of your instrument, admittedly, lowers the amplitude of your instrument as you know that the wooden body of violin reacts as a membrane in resonance with the vibration of strings.
Bases made of sponge or foam having more area of an attachment may dump the sound. But don’t worry, the makers also know that fact, that’s why most of the brands available in the market, have a design which prevents the base from attaching with the body, they are only clamped through the feet.
But it’s important for you to know this technical point as well. Most of the bases are made of wood, metal, fiber, or plastic, even though, they do not touch the body. It is said admittedly that the wood boosts the sound better, and absorbs less so it does not add a dampening effect to the original sound.
Padding is the area that attaches to your body and prevents the violin of slipping down. Your clothes can not create enough friction with the wooden body of the violin to hold it stable. That’s where the shoulder rest helps.
The base of the shoulder rest is normally padded with the soft material on the shoulder side. So that it can provide comfort as well as a perfect holding. Shoulder rests are designed enorgomically to work best with the curves of the human shoulder.
The shoulder side curve helps to fix it with the shoulder and the side on the chest. It creates a resistance point to avoid drooping forward or slipping out. There are rests available with an adjustable curvature. You can shape the curve to have your required tilt and placement.
If you choose a brand made of wood or metal which does not have a padded base. Then you may face a slipping experience due to the plain surface of the base on the shoulder side. But still, there is nothing to worry about it. Simply use some rubber bands or pieces of cork on the dropping edge of your shoulder rest. Surely it will help you creating the friction point to avoid slipping.4) How to Put Shoulder Rest on Violin?
If you are not aware of how to put shoulder rest on the violin, please see the below video, it will guide you.
Expert Advice to purchase:
Either if you are a beginner or a professional who is afraid of losing money in case of making a wrong decision. We advise you to start with a cheaper one, within days you will get to know what actually do you want. After that, you are ready to make a perfect choice.
1- Does the shoulder rest affect the sound?
While a stringed instrument creating the sound, it may receive interruptions or add ups in the sound either weaker or stronger from everything attached to its body. Bar style shoulder rest interrupt near to none. While the wooden ones are more resonant with the sound. Rests made of sponge or foam which have more area attached with the body of your instrument may cause a muting effect to its sound.
2- With or without a shoulder rest?
When you hold a violin without a shoulder rest, you need to place it on your shoulder. That means your wide shoulder and the clothes are attached to the body of your violin, it definitely interrupts the natural response of the wooden body, to the strings’ vibrations. It will almost have the same effect as it is of using a sponge or foam made rest. You may avoid it using a shoulder rest. Moreover, a rest provides an easy holding, and you don’t need to lift your shoulder, which lets you avoid tiredness or muscle tension.
3- Should beginners or students use a shoulder rest?
How to hold a violin, and how to avoid it from slipping and tilting from you should is the first thing a beginner or student needs to practice on. Using a shoulder rest may save this time to use the same in learning how to play the violin. They may get familiar with the real skill more comfortably and rapidly.The conclusion from the debate is that with the evolution around the globe, things are made easy in almost every field of life. People are adopting new techniques and facilities to create a room for their comfort.
Even if some of the traditional players do not like to use a shoulder rest, that can not set a fast rule for all others to not use it for themselves too. If the latest feature may make you comfortable and also let you perform well in whatever the field is you, why not use it. The ball is in your court.
But Keep in mind, to choose the best shoulder rest you should know about the best violin for kids, beginners, and advanced players. Because the selection of shoulder rest also depends on the selection of the violin.