How do you hold your horn?

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ttf_sirisobhakya
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How do you hold your horn?

Post by ttf_sirisobhakya » Tue Nov 28, 2017 4:03 pm

I know there are many threads about this topic, but I just want to do kind of a survey, and also looking for some suggestions if I do anything wrong.

1. How do you hold your horn when you play? Where does the weight rest? Where is your preferred center-of-mass (nose-heavy or tail-heavy?) For me, the weight rests almost entirely in my left hand, through tension in fingers and friction with the palm. I normally prefer the horn to be a bit tail-heavy, maybe just because I am familiar with my bass' weight distribution. I once returned to my former school and played a horn (a straight tenor) and I was shocked with how nose-heavy it is, while I don't remember feeling that way at all when I was playing that horn back in the middle school years.

(Edit: I ask this because I have read many comments preferring thumb brace/rotor lever behind brace. To rest the weight on the thumb-hand joint, I think?)

2. How do you hold your horn when NOT playing it, both standing and sitting? I always hold the horn so that the slide crook does not touch the ground, if sitting during concert the weight rest on the bell, during practice (where we have so much space due to practicing in a sport hall) I normally rest it horizontally across my lap to relieve my left arm.

3. How do you put your horn down (on the floor when necessary)? I used to rest it on the slide crook, the bell and the tuning slide, but I have read that the best way is to rest it on the mouthpiece reciever, the bell and the tuning slide, since the slide would bare no load. The spit came out of the mouthpiece reciever, though, so now I always remind myself to empty it before putting the horn down.

Thank you for your opinion and suggestions.
ttf_Steven
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How do you hold your horn?

Post by ttf_Steven » Tue Nov 28, 2017 7:57 pm

How I hold my trombone isn't something I've given much thought to, and I suppose there isn't anything unusual about the way I hold it.  The trombone rests on the heel of my hand with my thumb on the trigger, index finger on the mouthpiece receiver, and other three fingers by the L of the slide brace.  The trombone kind of sits in the crook of my neck, but there isn't much weight support there.  The grip is stable and there are no pressure points.  I've looked at other grips, but have no reason to try them seriously. 

During rest periods, my pinky tends to go onto the other side of the slide grip.  Sometimes my index finger comes down and joins the other two fingers.  I never rest the trombone across my lap, only because I see no reason to do this.  I do have a trombone stand.

Your current way of resting your trombone on the ground is good.  Bell, mouthpiece, tuning slide.  I wouldn't worry about water dripping out of the mouthpiece.  Not a big deal.

Getting drinks after a recent brass band gig, another trombone player and I rested our instruments in this three point stance facing each other on a ledge.  It looked so cool, I wish I had taken a picture.
ttf_LowrBrass
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How do you hold your horn?

Post by ttf_LowrBrass » Tue Nov 28, 2017 8:19 pm

1. How do you hold your horn when you play?
The normal way...?

Where does the weight rest?
Generally between my middle-finger joint (I had "bass trombone finger" [or whatever it's called] for years before I ever picked up a bass trombone!) and the ham of my thumb/palm. I think. Left hand. If your right hand is supporting the weight of the horn, you're doing it wrong.

Where is your preferred center-of-mass (nose-heavy or tail-heavy?)
Dead center, at the grips.



2. How do you hold your horn when NOT playing it, both standing and sitting?
Sitting: bell on left thigh (or on a stand). Nothing else is definite. Lately I've taken to resting my left hand on my left hip, to rest my shoulder a bit. I see a lot of other players do this too.
Standing: I am exactly tall enough that I rest the slide on top of my foot, with the bumper in between my big toe and second toe (while wearing soft-top sneakers), and I gently but securely grasp the slide braces with my arm comfortably extended.

Addendum: and I always always always act like my slide lock might be unlocked (extended pinky or whatever).


3. How do you put your horn down (on the floor when necessary)? I do it the wrong way!!! The right way gives me visions of tripping over the slide pointing up in the air, and the idea of using a mouthpiece that's been lying on the ground... yuck. But I only do it on carpet in my own home for short periods of time. Anywhere else, I'll put the horn away in its case instead of laying it on the ground.
ttf_BillO
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How do you hold your horn?

Post by ttf_BillO » Tue Nov 28, 2017 8:34 pm

Quote from: sirisobhakya on Nov 28, 2017, 04:03PM
1. How do you hold your horn when you play? Where does the weight rest? Where is your preferred center-of-mass (nose-heavy or tail-heavy?)I like a trombone that is well balanced such that the CG is over my left hand.  I keep my wrist in line with my forearm, but because I ride dirt bikes I have fairly robust forearms (not quite Popeye like, but well over average).  I always feel the effort in my shoulders, not my arm.

Quote2. How do you hold your horn when NOT playing it, both standing and sitting?Basically anything goes here as long as it's secure.  If the piece is tacit, it usually sits on the stand, but if I have to play at some point in the piece I take it off the stand and hold it vertically on it's bumper when the piece starts until 2 or so bars before I play.  I remember back to high school when I ruined a performance by grabbing my trombone off the stand during a piece and knocking the stand over.  That won't happen again.

Quote3. How do you put your horn down (on the floor when necessary)?I have never found it necessary to put my trombone on the floor.  I will occasionally put it on a table if I do not have a stand for it, but it only goes there while I get the case ready to load it into.  When it goes on the table it rest as you used to, sort of.  It depends on how the slide angles from the bell.  I cannot see how this puts damaging stress on the slide.

ttf_jalapeno
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How do you hold your horn?

Post by ttf_jalapeno » Tue Nov 28, 2017 8:54 pm

I usually put my horn on my stand if not playing

BUT earlier this year was at a gig and a PA fell over and knocked my Yammie over. My mpc was stuck but my tech took care of that and got a few dents out. (One small one from the fall)
Gave me $50 just in case so grateful for that
Should’ve seen the tenor sax....got MESSED UP

Lesson learned....if horn isn’t in your hand, it’s in the case
ttf_John Beers Jr.
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How do you hold your horn?

Post by ttf_John Beers Jr. » Tue Nov 28, 2017 10:16 pm

1. I hold it with a Sheridan Get-a-Grip, putting the weight, largely, on the top of my hand and allowing my thumb and middle finger to do their thing unencumbered.
2. I will rest the edge of the bell on the top of my knee so as to avoid putting the slide crook on the ground. If I happen to be standing and my arms get tired while I'm holding the horn up, I'll rest the end of my slide on my foot because I'm stupid and should know better that it's not the hardness of the substrate that's the problem, but the weight pressing against the slide tubes. The more interesting thing is how this interacts with point 1, since the get-a-grip, not being permanently attached to the trombone, needs to be aligned in just the right way to securely bear the weight of the instrument. This being the case, I've found that it's disadvantageous to hold the slide with my pinky finger, since it throws my whole hand into misalignment, and the get-a-grip makes it so that it's more difficult to make fine adjustments while playing. As such, I should keep my left hand in "playing position" and rely on the slide lock wholly, instead of in part, to keep the slide on the bumpers.
3. Mouthpiece down. I don't like to do this, but I try my hardest to avoid setting the horn down, and I hate dragging around a trombone stand more. If it seems likely to be an issue, I do keep a trombone stand and a music stand in my trunk just in case, though.
ttf_LeoInFL
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How do you hold your horn?

Post by ttf_LeoInFL » Wed Nov 29, 2017 8:06 am

Quote from: sirisobhakya on Nov 28, 2017, 04:03PM1. How do you hold your horn when you play? Where does the weight rest? Where is your preferred center-of-mass (nose-heavy or tail-heavy?)I use an Edwards 'C' thumbrest on my Getzen 3047AFR. For this model the slides are noticeably heavy so I'm aware of supporting the weight of the horn fractionally with my right hand when playing whole notes/long tones/etc.
Quote from: sirisobhakya on Nov 28, 2017, 04:03PM2. How do you hold your horn when NOT playing it, both standing and sitting?Standing: bell brace rests on my left wrist, all 4 fingers of my left hand hold the outer slide brace. My right hand rests on top of my left hand (kinda like I'm hugging my trombone).
Sitting: Trombone stand. If there's any foot traffic nearby I instinctively reach up to steady my horn with my left hand.
Quote from: sirisobhakya on Nov 28, 2017, 04:03PM3. How do you put your horn down (on the floor when necessary)?For me, never on the floor. Usually on a side table right up against a wall, slide flat down. I understand the concern about flexing the slide, but I only do this during intermissions (5-10min) at the most.
ttf_hyperbolica
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How do you hold your horn?

Post by ttf_hyperbolica » Wed Nov 29, 2017 8:21 am

Quote from: sirisobhakya on Nov 28, 2017, 04:03PMI know there are many threads about this topic, but I just want to do kind of a survey, and also looking for some suggestions if I do anything wrong.

1. How do you hold your horn when you play? Where does the weight rest?
Tenor, index finger on top of the top cork barrel, middle 2 fingers wrapped around brace, pinky trying to avoid being pinched in slide. I have a big callous on the side of my left middle finger from where it touches the slide brace. When I was in music school it was so large it looked like a huge deformity, I couldn't put my left index and middle fingers together.
Bass, Sheridan get-a-grip, ring or middle finger on 2nd trigger, sometimes I use Ergobone because of tendonitis. This supports the whole weight of the instrument on a brace around my shoulders.

Quote2. How do you hold your horn when NOT playing it, both standing and sitting?

I try to just hold it in my left and and lie my left hand on my left knee. Or on a tbone stand. I have 4-5 different kinds of stands including the kind that holds the grip braces and tilts the horn. How many 88hs have you seen with little dents or puckers in front of the main bell brace gusset? That's a bent (or buckled) bell from too much weight on the bell in a conventional tbone stand.

Quote3. How do you put your horn down (on the floor when necessary)?

I don't do that affected nonsense with the bell flare supporting the horn and the slide sticking up in the air. I really try not to put my horn down like this, but when I do, I put it on a soft chair, with as much of the weight as possible on the grip area, with the slide un- or lightly supported. The grip is the only area really meant to bear a load. The slide and the bell aren't meant to take pressure.
ttf_bonenick
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How do you hold your horn?

Post by ttf_bonenick » Wed Nov 29, 2017 8:33 am

Recently I noticed that lot of the straight (probably small bore too, but not necessarily) trombone folks seem to prefer holding the tbone in a position where the slide is paralel to the ground and the bell sits on the top, not to the sides...is there any advantage to that?
ttf_hyperbolica
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Joined: Sat Mar 31, 2018 11:53 am

How do you hold your horn?

Post by ttf_hyperbolica » Wed Nov 29, 2017 8:41 am

Quote from: bonenick on Nov 29, 2017, 08:33AMRecently I noticed that lot of the straight (probably small bore too, but not necessarily) trombone folks seem to prefer holding the tbone in a position where the slide is paralel to the ground and the bell sits on the top, not to the sides...is there any advantage to that?

I think sometimes that has to do with the slide width. Some tenors have very narrow slides, and some tenor players have very wide necks. I know slide width affects the way I hold my tenors.
ttf_hyperbolica
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Joined: Sat Mar 31, 2018 11:53 am

How do you hold your horn?

Post by ttf_hyperbolica » Wed Nov 29, 2017 8:41 am

Quote from: bonenick on Nov 29, 2017, 08:33AMRecently I noticed that lot of the straight (probably small bore too, but not necessarily) trombone folks seem to prefer holding the tbone in a position where the slide is paralel to the ground and the bell sits on the top, not to the sides...is there any advantage to that?

I think sometimes that has to do with the slide width. Some tenors have very narrow slides, and some tenor players have very wide necks. I know slide width affects the way I hold my tenors.
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