by Linda Ratcliff
Either you let your life slip away without doing the things you want to do,
(like learning to play the dulcimer) or you just get up and do them.
– Roger von Oech
Do you feel like you’re constantly chasing your dulcimer? I’ve heard and read comments from several people who can’t seem to get the dulcimer to stay put on their laps when playing. As a matter of fact, I am sure most of us experienced this problem when we first began to learn to play.
I have several suggestions for you that might help, if you’re having this issue.
- The solution that I’ve seen most often is to attach a strap to the dulcimer and wrap the strap around your back.
- Another trick that many folks do is to put a piece of non-slip shelf paper on their lap, and then set the dulcimer on top of that.
- Some people raise their knees by resting their feet on a footstool. There are several varieties of footstools availabile online. But with a footstool or not, sitting in a chair that is at the right height is also a must.
- I saw a performance by one dulcimer player who put his dulcimer case on his lap, and then put the dulcimer right back in his case and played that way. That looked awkward to me, but he did an excellent job.
- On YouTube, you will see professional dulcimer performers standing up, with their dulcimer set on a dulcimer stand.
- I’ve also seen people sitting on the floor cross-legged while playing. Now I can already feel my back aching, thinking about that idea – but look at Steve enjoying nature on the beach, and how his knee keeps the dulcimer in place.
If you’re having this problem … choose a solution. But whatever you do, don’t give up and put your dulcimer back in the case … just because it won’t stay put.
As always, if you have any questions, always feel free to ask Steve or myself.