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Hi Beth and my fellow violin enthusiast,


A question about finger taps, Beth one of your favorite topics I believe.  How much time is ideal for using finger taps in warm ups?  10 minutes, 30 minutes, 1 hour?  Is it recommended to have stretching exercises every, say 10 minutes of using finger taps?


Thanks for any thoughts,



6 Responses
Posted: November 6, 2012
Last Comment: November 20, 2019

Beth Blackerby
Posted: November 20, 2019
Wow, this post is from 2012. No wonder I was puzzled when I saw my post. 

Erica, yes the thumb does bear weight from the tapping fingers, like the table leg. The table leg doesn't push up, but is sturdy to help support the weight from the top of the table. The other "table legs" would be your head weight and shoulder. 

Posted: November 20, 2019
Weight bearing thumb?
When doing finger tap exercises, does the thumb bear any weight from the pressure of the taps?  If I take my thumb away, the neck of the violin bobs about and I have trouble "striking the little hammer" as it were.  But if I have my thumb on the neck to stabilize, I seem to have trouble moving my hand down the neck for fourth finger taps...so, is the thumb weight bearing or no?

Posted: November 7, 2012

Thank you for making the great video response.  Now when ever I'm watching a movie and there is a slow part I'll practice the finger taps. hmmm if I'm praticing finger taps why not incorporate scales, especially ones that I'm trying to learn like D melodic minor for What Child is This"  Why have it arbitrary? eh? Then back to the movie.

Beth Blackerby
Posted: November 7, 2012
This discussion includes members-only video content

Posted: November 7, 2012

Cheers, Andrew, thanks for the input.  I first use those video exercises on loosing and getting control over individual fingers from Steve Eriwn's finger flexibility exercises.  I then follow those with Beth's two videos on stretching and strength exercises.  This all takes 10 minutes to 20 minutes.  I beginning to wonder if I was training large muscle groups say in a gymn or for a marathon, I probably would have more of a plan for the warm ups and maybe I should apply that to warming up for the violin.

Just wondering.


Stephen, Los Osos, CA
Posted: November 6, 2012
Hi Ray,
I think finger tap exercises are very helpful, especial at getting
that 4th finger pinky stronger. For me brief tapping exercises of
not over a couple minutes work fine, but I think the frequency of the exercise
is more beneficial than the length of the exercise.  I do tapping without
the violin in hand but position my arm, wrist and fingers like I would if I had a
real one in place. That way I can exercise those fingers while reading, watching a flick
or using the computer and not just when I'm practicing. I get more exercise
in that way. I hope that helps, just my thoughts on the subject.:-)