Got your first violin…? But the right size?
Finding the right size of violin for their child is always a matter that preoccupies parents once they meet the decision to start violin lessons. In the majority of the cases of parents usually buy the instrument ahead the first meeting with the teacher and usually 2 sizes bigger than the appropriate (the logic behind that is obvious). Why to buy four of five violins with smaller sizes instead of buying just one in the end size. The truth however is that an instrument which is too small or large is difficult to play and more difficult to listen to for parents. Ill-fitting instruments cannot be played in tune and can harm the young player’s growing muscles and tendons. Moreover children avoid instinctively tiring activities that pushes their muscular system into its limits. As result they avoid to practice quitting the music lessons.
It is thus essential from the very beginning to have the necessary information in mind to make the right decision about the violin size. The following table will give a general idea about the appropriate size in regard to age and arm length without though being “panacea”.
A table comparing the size of violin in relation to age and arm length:
|Age of player||Player’s arm length||Violin Size||Violin measurements (Length: body & Total)|
|11 to adult||23 “||4/4 or full size||14 – 23, 5 “|
|9 – 12 years||21,5 – 22, 00 “||3/4||13 – 21 “|
|7 – 9 years||20”||2/4 or 1/2||12, 5 – 20, 5 “|
|5 — 7 years||18 – 18, 5”||1/4||11 – 19 “|
|4 — 6 years||16, 5”||1/8||10 – 17 “|
|4 – 5 years||15 “||1/10||9 – 16 “|
|3 – 5 years||14 “||1/16||8 – 14, 5|
Alternatively you can always size a violin against the player. Have the young child hold the violin up on the left shoulder and extending out 45 degrees from their side (not in the front, not to the side.) Next, ask the player to reach from under the violin to the scroll (curly end) of the violin with their outstretched left hand, curving the fingers around the scroll from below. If the scroll ends up in the wrist (beginning of the palm) then you have the appropriate size (see the photo below).