Lora Staples - beginning violin and fiddle expert

How to not hit other strings on violin

Practical tips to avoid hitting extra strings during your violin playing.

In this video, Lora shows you an easy way to avoid hitting other strings when you play your violin. A simple adjustment of the bow location between the bridge and the fingerboard may be the answer!

Released on January 1, 2014

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Comments, Questions, Requests:

Sandra Wyman on May 4, 2020 @2:49 pm PST
Aha! This might solve my issue with Minuet 2 in Suzuki Book 1!
Loralyn Staples - host, on May 5, 2020 @12:28 pm PST
This will DEFINITELY help with Minuet 2!
But clean string crossings are a challenge just for coordinating our bow arm. So in addition to the tips given in this video, focus on using your ELBOW (not your shoulder) to bow. Also be EXTRA aware when you are crossing to a new string on an UP BOW. (THAT is where the real accidents happen because it's harder)
Good luck!
Lukas Miller on January 17, 2020 @8:11 am PST
I have been playing violin for fifteen years and even though I love it, it is so frustrating because there is virtually no way to hide behind it as in any solo instrument. I appreciate your video about playing in the third and fourth lanes to prevent hitting other strings. Could you also you do a video on how to prevent the bow from getting stuck in the strings and ripping off hairs?
Fabrizio Ferrari - moderator and CEO, on January 17, 2020 @8:42 am PST
Dear Lukas, thank you for your posted comment. I am sure Lora will answer you soon, but in the meantime, I wanted to let you know that Lora is no longer making videos for us (at the moment), so, if she agrees, I'd pass your video request to our current violin expert Prof. Fitzpatrick:


I am sure he'll be more than happy to consider to make a video on what you just suggested.

Thanks again for your provided feedback.

All the best,
Lora * VSM MEMBER * on January 17, 2020 @1:13 pm PST
Fabrizio, I agree. Professor Fitzpatrick is fantastic, and he will have a good answer, I'm sure.
Lora * VSM MEMBER * on January 17, 2020 @1:15 pm PST
Hi Lukas, Professor Fitzpatrick will hopefully give you a video answer to your questions about breaking hairs. But let me just give you this hint: If you are breaking hairs about 8 inches from the frog, that is because you are "pinching" the hair between the bow and the string...so it cuts the hairs. This is caused by pressing to hard or violently on your down bow strokes. OR, it could mean you need to tighten your bow.
Fabrizio Ferrari - moderator and CEO, on January 17, 2020 @1:28 pm PST
Thank you Lora! Glad to know that and thank you for participating in the discussion Smiley Face
Kati on March 25, 2015 @3:17 pm PST
This video is awesome you do such a good job at giving tips
Lora * VSM MEMBER * on March 25, 2015 @7:28 pm PST
Thanks, Katie!
I appreciate your taking the time to say that! More good stuff to come!
Shabtay Oz * VSM MEMBER * on August 30, 2014 @1:11 am PST
Wow, it's a very good tip indeed. I am playin "some wher over the rainbow" and usualy i hit extra string passing from G to D string. thank you very much i will try it.
Francis E. Elliott * VSM MEMBER * on June 4, 2014 @8:55 am PST
An excellent solution for not getting interruptions of other strings in certain string crossing passages. However, the scratchy issue can be solved by bow speed which you should have included when getting closer to the bridge and effects it has on dynamics.
Karen Wenzel on March 29, 2014 @4:31 pm PST
Lora, Thank you again for teaching tips for my young violin class. It has been so long since I learned that I no longer know how Iearned it. This idea of lanes is new to me and will make sence to my little students. I wish there were a way to get the video as a link in e-mail to them to help them while they are on Spring Break. If there is, please let me know. And, thank you again, Karen
Fabrizio Ferrari - moderator and CEO, on March 31, 2014 @3:09 pm PST
HI Karen,
glad you are enjoying Lora's videos!

To copy the web address of our videos into an email, just the web address from your web browser location (URL) at the top, then paste it into your students' emails.

For example, the web address of the video on this page is the following URL:


Please, let me know if you need any further help.

Thank you again.
Shirlene on January 13, 2014 @2:41 pm PST
This was really helpful. I never thought about playing closer to the bridge to help this. What would also be helpful for those of us in the learning stage would be how to eliminate scratches and squeaks, especially when we play open strings.
Lora * VSM MEMBER * on January 13, 2014 @6:27 pm PST
Excellent idea, Shirlene, in fact I was thinking of doing a video all about squeaky E strings, so I might as well tackle the whole topic! Be on the look-out for that video!
JUAN MANUEL GONZALEZ DE COSIO * VSM MEMBER * on January 12, 2014 @5:35 am PST
Knowing how to teach properly is an art. It requires commitment, vocation and lots of patience, and you dear Laurie, are a great artist in this respect. I really thank you for your valuable violin lessons ! Your contribution to all of us who are learning to play this difficult instrument is enormous. My Best to you and please keep doing it.
Lora * VSM MEMBER * on January 13, 2014 @11:19 am PST
Hi Juan! Thank you for your kind words! I most definitely will continue helping where I can! I have plans for more upcoming videos. Keep up the good work...it is a difficult instrument, but SO rewarding once you get over that beginner's squawk!
Kathleen Cornet on January 10, 2014 @2:11 pm PST
Excellent! Thank you so much! Your explanation is so
clear and easy to understand.
Lora * VSM MEMBER * on January 11, 2014 @5:54 pm PST
It's one of those simple concepts that make a BIG difference! Good luck!
Jacomijn * VSM MEMBER * on January 10, 2014 @1:31 am PST
Thanks a lot, I'm going to check out where my bow is this 'horrible' folk music passage. And of course where my bow is during all my other playing.
Lora * VSM MEMBER * on January 10, 2014 @11:46 am PST
I bet it will improve your playing ten-fold! Keep up the good work!
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