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#933161 - 09/20/07 08:46 PM Piano bench height--standard difference to key height
joangolfing Offline
500 Post Club Member

Registered: 12/11/06
Posts: 666
Loc: Iowa
I just got a new piano bench and its one inch shorter than my original bench.

My piano keys are 30 1/2" from the floor.
My new bench is 19 3/4" from the floor.
My old bench is 20 3/4 " from the floor.
So the space between the bench and the keys is 8.75" and 9.75"

Is there a standard height for piano benches and a recommended difference between the bench and the keys? Even that 1" difference between my old and new benches seems significant.

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#933162 - 09/20/07 11:57 PM Re: Piano bench height--standard difference to key height
John v.d.Brook Online   content
7000 Post Club Member

Registered: 03/18/06
Posts: 7344
Loc: Olympia, Washington, USA
There is no standard height, because everyone is different. That's why better teachers recommend adjustable height benches. There is a recent thread on this subject you might want to look at.

By the way, my piano bench is by Lanzani. Here's their web page: http://www.ergonomicpianobench.com/IT/ITindex.html
_________________________
"Those who dare to teach must never cease to learn." -- Richard Henry Dann
Full-time Private Piano Teacher offering Piano Lessons in Olympia, WA. www.mypianoteacher.com
Certified by the American College of Musicians; member NGPT, MTNA, WSMTA, OMTA

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#933163 - 09/21/07 03:08 AM Re: Piano bench height--standard difference to key height
btb Offline
4000 Post Club Member

Registered: 01/21/04
Posts: 4261
Loc: Pretoria South Africa
Here’s an interesting diagram showing the different bench heights and distances from the keyboard dependent on
1. Length of trunk (123 ... long, medium, short) and
2. Length of upper arm (123 ... long, medium, short)

web page

It will be noted that
The longer the trunk, the LOWER the bench should be
The longer the upper arm, the HIGHER the bench should be

38cms = 15 "
45cms = 17½ "
54cms = 21¼ "

As suggested by John ... an adjustable bench caters for all ... ensuring a STRAIGHT BACK AND HORIZONTAL FOREARM. Your new and old bench heights of 19¾ " and 20¾ " fall in the higher bench heights in relation to the diagram.

But if the new bench height is one inch lower than the old ... and you are comfortable with the old height ... would it not be advisable to simply add a cushion to make up the difference
in height.

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#933164 - 09/21/07 02:32 PM Re: Piano bench height--standard difference to key height
Morodiene Online   content
Yikes! 10000 Post Club Member

Registered: 04/06/07
Posts: 11700
Loc: Boynton Beach, FL
John:
That site is very interesting. I have recently read a book on posture, and to get people in balance, they use a little "booster" seat that tilts forwarrd much like that bench. How do you find it compares to the typical artists (adjustable) bench one normally gets?
_________________________
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MTNA member
www.valeoconservatory.com
Petrof 9'2 Concert, Yamaha G3, Roland FP-7, Yamaha MOX6, Kawai MP11

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#933165 - 09/21/07 05:02 PM Re: Piano bench height--standard difference to key height
signa Offline
8000 Post Club Member

Registered: 06/06/04
Posts: 8483
Loc: Ohio, USA
that Lanzani bench makes sense! i already noticed that i had to sit on the edge of chair or bench to be able to play at easy, which is virtually in that bench's position except i use only 1/3 of the sitting space rather than the full space as that bench.

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#933166 - 09/21/07 05:17 PM Re: Piano bench height--standard difference to key height
John v.d.Brook Online   content
7000 Post Club Member

Registered: 03/18/06
Posts: 7344
Loc: Olympia, Washington, USA
Morodiene, I like it very much and I don't feel fatigued after several hours of practicing. It's on my living room grand, and you can see the corner of it on my Avatar. As I noted in another recent thread, I use Burghardt benches for my studio pianos.

http://www.burghardtbaenke.de/englisch/inhalte_englisch/inhalt_englisch.html
_________________________
"Those who dare to teach must never cease to learn." -- Richard Henry Dann
Full-time Private Piano Teacher offering Piano Lessons in Olympia, WA. www.mypianoteacher.com
Certified by the American College of Musicians; member NGPT, MTNA, WSMTA, OMTA

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#933167 - 09/21/07 05:26 PM Re: Piano bench height--standard difference to key height
Morodiene Online   content
Yikes! 10000 Post Club Member

Registered: 04/06/07
Posts: 11700
Loc: Boynton Beach, FL
I have a cheap adjustable bench that came with my piano, and its not really adjusting very well anymore! It hasn't been used very much, either! I have a more substantial one at home, which has gotten lots of use, but every once in a while it creaks and rocks a bit now.

Can I ask how much your benches cost?
_________________________
private piano/voice teacher - full time
MTNA member
www.valeoconservatory.com
Petrof 9'2 Concert, Yamaha G3, Roland FP-7, Yamaha MOX6, Kawai MP11

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#933168 - 09/21/07 05:27 PM Re: Piano bench height--standard difference to key height
193866 Offline
500 Post Club Member

Registered: 08/02/06
Posts: 777
Loc: Manassas,Va
The Teacher and the Composer forums are so special in our Piano World. I could not wait to get home to read your posts. I missed them.I am back from PA. Wonderful trip. The Pittsburg Symphony was excellent, Marvin Hamlisch is always a treat and very dear to my heart. My man friend of 55 years is a relative of Anton Bruckner, his mother was a Bruckner. I felt blessed to be there with him, a big bonus. Thank all of you for being who you are. I tell people, who will listen, how much you have helped and inspired me. Thank you. Your information is very valuable and appreciated. Grandmother Sandy B
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Sandra M. Boletchek 08/02/06

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#933169 - 09/21/07 05:46 PM Re: Piano bench height--standard difference to key height
swingal Offline
1000 Post Club Member

Registered: 07/31/05
Posts: 1094
Loc: England
To Joan Golfing.

My key top is 29½" the Bench is 25½" to the seat top. I'm standing height at 5' 8"

I do like to have my arms sloping down from my shoulder to the key tops and play with curved fingers but down into the keys, not much flat hand and not as a dog begging style, sort of grabbing at the keys as some people do, due to sitting too low as I see it.

swingal

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#933170 - 09/21/07 06:15 PM Re: Piano bench height--standard difference to key height
lalakeys Offline
Full Member

Registered: 07/05/06
Posts: 286
Loc: Chicago 'burbs
I've always preferred my bench to be on the "high" side, so that I can use the weight of my upper body to help me play louder chords. In college my friends always said that they could tell when I had been practicing on the recital-hall grand piano, because the artist bench was adjusted as high as it would go!

And I'm aware of at least a couple of concert pianists who like to play "up high"--including Awadagin Pratt, who travels with a STOOL.
_________________________
Private piano & voice teacher for over 20 years; currently also working as a pipe organist for 3 area churches; sing in a Chicago-area acappella chamber choir

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#933171 - 09/21/07 06:59 PM Re: Piano bench height--standard difference to key height
Morodiene Online   content
Yikes! 10000 Post Club Member

Registered: 04/06/07
Posts: 11700
Loc: Boynton Beach, FL
I have a very long back (I'm 5'7), so I usually have the seat a bit lower than most people. The key I think is to make sure that your wrist can be at a level position.
_________________________
private piano/voice teacher - full time
MTNA member
www.valeoconservatory.com
Petrof 9'2 Concert, Yamaha G3, Roland FP-7, Yamaha MOX6, Kawai MP11

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#933172 - 09/21/07 11:40 PM Re: Piano bench height--standard difference to key height
Minaku Offline
1000 Post Club Member

Registered: 07/26/07
Posts: 1226
Loc: Atlanta
I used to sit up high, but after I got to college I realized I sat higher to compensate for poor technique in forte passages. I have since lowered my bench to the appropriate height and will, along with everyone else here, recommend an adjustable piano bench. Myself, I have an artist bench, and I love it to pieces. So does the cat...
_________________________
Pianist and teacher with a 5'8" Baldwin R and Clavi CLP-230 at home.

New website up: http://www.studioplumpiano.com. Also on Twitter @QQitsMina

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#933173 - 09/22/07 11:33 AM Re: Piano bench height--standard difference to key height
joangolfing Offline
500 Post Club Member

Registered: 12/11/06
Posts: 666
Loc: Iowa
This has been an interesting set of comments to my question. I learned that it is somewhat measurable but also there is personal preference involved.

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