Instrumentalists Novi, MI


Instrumental musicians are at risk for upper extremity musculoskeletal injuries. The rate of occurrence of musculoskeletal injuries for musicians ranges from 39% to 87%, which is similar to work-related musculoskeletal injuries in the general population. 1,2Just under 10% of college-level instrumental performance majors sustain a performance injury each year. 3For musicians, even a minor musculoskeletal injury, which may not be disabling to the general population, may significantly affect their ability to perform.

Successful treatment of musculoskeletal problems in a musician and prevention of future problems consists of several components. First, the type of injury must be identified and how often it occurs. The mechanism of injury and potential risk factors must also be identified. Regional muscle pain syndromes and tendon damage accounts for the majority of diagnoses. 3 The most common parts of the body affected are the arms, hands, shoulder blades, and upper back. Risk factors for injury can include characteristics of the performer and the environment, and can be modifiable (e.g., strength or hours of practicing per day) or non-modifiable (e.g., gender). 3Data shows that women are injured more frequently than men and the frequency of injury varies with the instrument played. 4 A likely risk factor for injury is a sudden increase in developing an effective prevention program would be to design an intervention based on the information mentioned above.

At Oakland Physical Therapy, P.C., the musician is evaluated for the specific mechanism of injury and potential risk factors. Treatment addresses the area of pain and injury in addition to providing exercise and training for more efficient posture and movement patterns in all activities, including playing an instrument.

  1. Wu, S.J. (2007). Occupational risk factors for musculoskeletal disorders in musicians: a systematic review. Medical Problems of Performing Artists. 22(2), 43-51
  2. Zaa.C (1998). Playing related musculoskeletal disorders in musicians: a systematic review of incidence and prevalence. Canadian Medical Association Journal. 158(8), 1019-1027.
  3. Manchester, R.A; Toward better prevention of injuries among performing artists. Medical Problems of Performing Artists, 21(1), 1-2.
  4. Cayea, D. Manchester R.A., Instrument specific rates of upper-extremity injuries in music students. Medical Problems of Performing Artists. 13, 19-25