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Physical Aspects

Physical Aspects of Performing

Embouchure Problems
Comprehensive embouchure website for brass players suffering with embouchure problems or lip injuries. Contains FAQ, “Embouchure alert”, article archive, photos and diagrams, sales of “buzzpipes and mute nooses.”

Embouchures.com – a primary resource for brass players with embouchure problems; excellent reference books for sale, including Broken Embouchures and Rehabilitating Embouchures.

Our occupational hazard as horn players is exposure to loud noise (especially if you have to sit in front of the trumpets). If you’re wondering if you have any hearing loss, check out But Can You Hear THIS? It’s an informal test of your hearing at different frequencies.

Musician Health Insurance Survey

Isometric Exercises for the embouchure; Stevens isometric exercises (with illustrations)

Member Directory – physicians and other specialists who are members of PAMA (Performing Arts Medicine Association)

PAMA Bibliography – search for an article on the web site of the Performing Arts Medicine Association

Horn Player’s Preventive Maintenance – blog entry by Jeffrey Agrell

Braces & Brass – information on a book on the use of dental braces and brass playing.

Braceguard – commercial product to provide “lip protection for … all brass.” See also here for more info.

Dentalkit.com – is a commercial site with a lot of information on braces. See their Lip Protector Comparison Chart.

The Jet Tone Lip Protector is another option for wearers of braces.

“The Greatly Misunderstood Subject of Embouchure Overuse and Embouchure Dysfunction Common in Brass Instrumentalists” – article on dystonia by Lucinda Lewis, author of Broken Embouchures.

The Performing Arts Medicine Association – web site of specialists in problems concerning musicians, dancers, and other performers. Publishers of Medical Problems of Performing Artists, “the first scientific medical journal devoted to the etiology, diagnosis, treatment, and prevention of medical and psychological disorders related to the performing arts.”

Embouchure Problems in Brass Instrumentalists – article by Richard J. Lederman in Vol. 16, No. 2 (June 2001) of Medical Problems of Performing Artists. Abstract only; you can buy a 7-day electonic access to the article or a print copy for $15

Body Mapping – course and text in musician’s care and use of the body in practicing and performing

Medical Problems of Wind Players – Horn Call article by Philip Farkas

Therapist for Musicians in Pain – article on a physical therapist for musicians

Maladies in Musicians: The Brass Section. Article on medical problems of brass players.

Musicians Health.com – by chiropractor Dr. Tim Jameson

Musicians and Injuries
How to stay healthy or get information on instrumental injuries.

Tinnitus FAQ – read more about those 10 billion metallic crickets you hear all the time after too many years of loud rehearsals and performances…

“Music to the (ringing) ears: New Therapy Targets Tinnitus” – article in Scientific American

Musician’s Health
This site is created by a chiropractor, so it is skewed toward chiropractic solutions, but there is a lot of good information here: repetitive injuries, orchestral stresses, carpal tunnel syndrome, nutrition, stretching and exercising, wellness guide, recommended books and more. Good set of links for all kinds of musician’s health related topics.

French Horn Playing Causes Blood Pressure to Rise – article by Laura Gordon

Therapist Well-Versed in Musician’s Pains – article on musician’s physical therapist David Schulman and how he heals musicians

The Valsava Mechanism


Books
Playing Less Hurt: An Injury Prevention Guide by Janet Horvath. Includes overuse syndrome, risk factors for orchestral musicians, danger signals, hearing loss, treatment, rehabilitation, instrument modifications, resource list.

The Biology of Musical Performance and Performance-related Injury by Alan H. D. Watson.

The Musician’s Body: A Maintenance Manual for Peak Performance by J. R. Llobet. Illustrated. Llobet is the Director of the Centre for the Physiology of the Arts, one of the few clinics in the world where musicians, dancers, and other performing artists can go for diagnosis and treatment.

Body Learning: An Introduction to the Alexander Technique by Michael J. Gelb

How to Learn the Alexander Technique: A Manual for Students by Barbara Conable

Guide to the Alexander Technique

What Every Musician Needs to Know About the Body: Practical Applications of Body Mapping to Making Music by Barbara Conable

You Are Your Instrument – by Julie Lyonn Lieberman

The Athletic Musician: A Guide to Playing Without Pain by Harrison Christine & Barbara Paull

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