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#2156006 - 09/23/13 07:46 AM Be careful, seriously
Loren D Offline
2000 Post Club Member

Registered: 06/22/10
Posts: 2546
Loc: PA
Repetitive stress injury is not fun. I've had to greatly cut back this year because of it. Careful with the hand you strike the keys with!
_________________________
DiGiorgi Piano Service (1984-2013)
http://www.digiorgipiano.com

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#2156193 - 09/23/13 01:39 PM Re: Be careful, seriously [Re: Loren D]
James Carney Offline
Full Member

Registered: 07/30/10
Posts: 440
Loc: new york city
I feel your pain, Loren. In April I was really having problems with a thumb tendon. I switched to the Levitan C lever and have tuned about 300 pianos with it. I also began using a palm striker which I bought from Charles Faulk. Doing both of these things solved 99% of my issues, and I can play gigs and practice without pain.

I tune about 16-20 pianos weekly so I had to do something.

The Levitan lever has been a real life saver, and I will soon post a more comprehensive thread on it. But I recommend trying the palm striker no matter which lever you use. I also recommend switching up levers, and learning to tune with both hands.
_________________________
Keyboardist & Composer, Piano Technician
www.jamescarney.net
http://jamescarneypianotuning.wordpress.com/

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#2156199 - 09/23/13 02:00 PM Re: Be careful, seriously [Re: Loren D]
BenP Offline
Full Member

Registered: 01/16/12
Posts: 166
Loc: South Jersey
James, I was recently thinking about messaging you. Curious to hear your review of the C lever, particularly on verticals. I'm seriously thinking about buying one.

As a college student, I had occasional tendonitis problems in my left hand from playing piano. I feel like I am especially vulnerable to repetitive stress injuries as a tuner. The fact that I only work on pianos part-time is probably what is keeping me safe right now. Thanks for the reminder Loren!
_________________________
Ben Patterson
Part-time Piano Tech
Rural South Jersey

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#2156201 - 09/23/13 02:06 PM Re: Be careful, seriously [Re: Loren D]
mariotto Offline
Full Member

Registered: 05/19/12
Posts: 56
Loc: EU
I am also a pianist and tuner and have similar problems, I dont tune much pianos pro year but when I work in a school I tune like 10 pianos in couple of days and I imediately feel it. It is vey important to try too keep the shoulders and the elbow relaxed but sometimes this is so hard.

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#2156235 - 09/23/13 03:31 PM Re: Be careful, seriously [Re: BenP]
Loren D Offline
2000 Post Club Member

Registered: 06/22/10
Posts: 2546
Loc: PA
Originally Posted By: BenP
James, I was recently thinking about messaging you. Curious to hear your review of the C lever, particularly on verticals. I'm seriously thinking about buying one.

As a college student, I had occasional tendonitis problems in my left hand from playing piano. I feel like I am especially vulnerable to repetitive stress injuries as a tuner. The fact that I only work on pianos part-time is probably what is keeping me safe right now. Thanks for the reminder Loren!


You're welcome! The time to start paying attention is before you have trouble!
_________________________
DiGiorgi Piano Service (1984-2013)
http://www.digiorgipiano.com

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#2156236 - 09/23/13 03:34 PM Re: Be careful, seriously [Re: mariotto]
Loren D Offline
2000 Post Club Member

Registered: 06/22/10
Posts: 2546
Loc: PA
Originally Posted By: mariotto
I am also a pianist and tuner and have similar problems, I dont tune much pianos pro year but when I work in a school I tune like 10 pianos in couple of days and I imediately feel it. It is vey important to try too keep the shoulders and the elbow relaxed but sometimes this is so hard.


Oh absolutely. Prior to this year, I tuned for four colleges. I would cram thirty pianos into a week for four weeks in a row, getting them all done. Last year was when I noticed the wrist pain, finger numbness, and hand tremor. Awful feeling!
_________________________
DiGiorgi Piano Service (1984-2013)
http://www.digiorgipiano.com

Top
#2156243 - 09/23/13 03:41 PM Re: Be careful, seriously [Re: James Carney]
Loren D Offline
2000 Post Club Member

Registered: 06/22/10
Posts: 2546
Loc: PA
Originally Posted By: James Carney
I feel your pain, Loren. In April I was really having problems with a thumb tendon. I switched to the Levitan C lever and have tuned about 300 pianos with it. I also began using a palm striker which I bought from Charles Faulk. Doing both of these things solved 99% of my issues, and I can play gigs and practice without pain.

I tune about 16-20 pianos weekly so I had to do something.

The Levitan lever has been a real life saver, and I will soon post a more comprehensive thread on it. But I recommend trying the palm striker no matter which lever you use. I also recommend switching up levers, and learning to tune with both hands.


Interesting comments about the C-lever! I've never tried one; I just might have to.

Re the palm striker: also a good idea. Unfortunately, I can no longer tune by ear since that involves setting a temperament using traditional hand/finger action while playing intervals. Doing that immediately sets off a flare-up. For about the past year, I've been tuning using a felt bass string wedge, sort of holding it in my closed fist and hitting the keys with it. Using Tunelab, I'm just hitting single notes with the wedge from A0-C88. Afterward, some tweaking is usually necessary, which requires me to use the hand traditionally again, but it's far better than using it the entire time and for the whole piano.

Anyway, beware!
_________________________
DiGiorgi Piano Service (1984-2013)
http://www.digiorgipiano.com

Top
#2156347 - 09/23/13 06:11 PM Re: Be careful, seriously [Re: Loren D]
mupianotech Offline
Full Member

Registered: 11/10/04
Posts: 34
Loc: Huntington WV
I've tuned for nearly 50 years and have had no particular problems with my hands, shoulders, wrists, etc.
However, my back is trashed.
_________________________
Paul E. Dempsey, RPT
Piano Technician Senior, Emeritus
Marshall University
Huntington, WV

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#2156373 - 09/23/13 06:58 PM Re: Be careful, seriously [Re: Loren D]
RonTuner Offline
1000 Post Club Member

Registered: 01/21/04
Posts: 1660
Loc: Chicagoland
I made a video about this a while back

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Iv8-ry6VoJg

About 2 1/2 minutes in to see the design of the current palm striker that I use. I read about a similar design using a raquetball with a portion of a hammer glued on that sounds even cushier!

Yeah - good to pay attention to the structure of our bodies as we spend all these hours tuning. Exercise, massage, yoga - all good stuff.

Oh, and don't forget about your ears - too many of us aren't protecting those on a regular basis!

Ron Koval
_________________________
Piano/instrument technician
www.ronkoval.com
@ronkoval

my piano videos:
http://www.youtube.com/profile_videos?user=drwoodwind


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#2156398 - 09/23/13 07:46 PM Re: Be careful, seriously [Re: RonTuner]
Loren D Offline
2000 Post Club Member

Registered: 06/22/10
Posts: 2546
Loc: PA
Originally Posted By: RonTuner
I made a video about this a while back

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Iv8-ry6VoJg

About 2 1/2 minutes in to see the design of the current palm striker that I use. I read about a similar design using a raquetball with a portion of a hammer glued on that sounds even cushier!

Yeah - good to pay attention to the structure of our bodies as we spend all these hours tuning. Exercise, massage, yoga - all good stuff.

Oh, and don't forget about your ears - too many of us aren't protecting those on a regular basis!

Ron Koval


For sure, Ron! I did start using ear plugs about five years ago, and they helped immensely, especially in those non-acoustically friendly practice rooms made of cement block!
_________________________
DiGiorgi Piano Service (1984-2013)
http://www.digiorgipiano.com

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