DOI: 10.1177/19484992231195014 ISSN:

Examining the Interaction Between Motor Development and Early Violin Learning

Anna Hiemstra, Makiko Sadakata
  • Music
  • History
  • Education

Playing the violin demands highly skilled motor performance, including advanced bimanual coordination and controlled, independent movement of fingers. Through existing literature, the current study aims to demonstrate how young children’s motor development relates to the motor demands of violin playing, specifically the demands on the left hand, the right hand, bimanual coordination, and posture. From literature on movement patterns in skilled violinists as well as literature pertaining to motor development between the ages of 4 and 7, connections were highlighted between developmental sequences in this age group and violin-specific skills. Generally observable motor issues relevant to violin playing were found to include intra- and inter-limb motor overflow, postural changes in growing children, and the proximodistal direction of gross and fine motor development. We suggest that further research on effective and age-appropriate movement teaching has the potential to inform violin pedagogues about finding more effective solutions for motor issues encountered in this age group.