Over the years, I’ve noticed that many students (and pros!) lean over too much when playing the clarinet (or saxophone!). Of course, it is very true that each person has their own unique way of relating to the clarinet based on their own particular body shape, embouchure, etc. Nevertheless, it seems clear to me that leaning over too much while performing can, at least somewhat, hinder good technique and music making generally.
So, I make a point in the my clarinet teaching to be sure that my students don’t lean over too much. I say to them, “Have the clarinet come to you – don’t go to the clarinet.” This is often said in the very first lesson, whether beginner, high school, college, or professional looking for a few pointers. It almost always helps to fix problems: embouchure, breathing, head position, hand/arm position, etc. (Click HERE to see a video where I work on this with a student in a master class at Florida State University.)
Watch for an upcoming post on the related issue of “head position/weight,” as it will be an extension of this topic.
ClarinetMike says, “Great posture on the clarinet totally rules! Don’t lean over too much and have the clarinet come to you!”
NOTE: The above is a slight revision of previous post.