Newspaper article St Louis Post-Dispatch (MO)

Musicians' Flair Is in the Joints

Newspaper article St Louis Post-Dispatch (MO)

Musicians' Flair Is in the Joints

Article excerpt

Maybe it's not the key to virtuoso performances, but doctors have identified double-jointedness as a trait that seems to help.

A study finds that a remarkably high number of flutists, violinists and other musicians who need perfectly coordinated fingers are double-jointed.

Certainly many fine musicians can't bend their thumbs back to touch their wrists - one of the hallmarks of double joints - but they seem to pay a price: They may be more likely to have sore, aching hands after hours of practice.

Like most discoveries, this one is not entirely a surprise. There has long been reason to think that double-jointedness might be an advantage when musicians make their fingers fly.

An article published in 1831 described the rubbery finger contortions of Nicolo Paganini, the legendary Italian violinist. He could bend his thumb back so far that the thumbnail touched the back of his hand.

In the latest look at the subject, doctors from the University of Rochester surveyed 660 students and faculty members at the Eastman School of Music to check their double-jointedness. …

Search by... Author
Show... All Results Primary Sources Peer-reviewed

Oops!

An unknown error has occurred. Please click the button below to reload the page. If the problem persists, please try again in a little while.