String Instrument Sizing Guide
This guide is intended to give you a rough idea of the size of instrument your or your child will require. Please note that this is a rough guide only. For best results, you should consult with our string experts or your teacher before purchasing or renting.
THIS IS A GENERAL GUIDE ONLY
One of the most important tasks we find ourselves undertaking at Simply for Strings is to size a student for their instrument. Whilst we always check sizing when you purchase an instrument, it is also important to talk to your teacher first about their thoughts on the appropriate size instrument. It is important to remember that we always err on the side of caution when it comes to instrument sizing. Unlike clothes, you cannot ‘grow into’ an instrument. If the instrument is too large then you will find yourself in severe pain when practising or performing. This often leads to a decrease in practice (and interest), which inevitably leads to the player choosing to forgo learning an instrument. Play pain-free and start with the right size violin, viola, cello or double bass from Simply for Strings.

Measuring Guide for Violin & Viola

Measure in centimeters from the neck to the middle of the palm.

SIZING FOR VIOLINS

Directions for Measuring: With the player’s arm fully extended and parallel to the floor, measure in centimetres from the neck to the middle of the palm.

SIZE OF VIOLIN MEASUREMENT (CM) AVERAGE AGE OF CHILD
1/16 35 - 38 CM 3 - 4 YRS
1/10 39 - 42 CM 4 - 5 YRS
1/8 43 - 46 CM 5 - 6 YRS
1/4 47 - 51 CM 6 -7 YRS
1/2 52 - 56 CM 7 - 8 YRS
3/4 57 - 60 CM 9 - 11 YRS
4/4 > 60 CM 11 - 13+ YRS
SIZING FOR VIOLAS

Directions for Measuring: With the player’s arm fully extended and parallel to the floor, measure in centimetres from the neck to the middle of the palm.

SIZE OF VIOLIA MEASUREMENT (CM)
12" 53 - 55 CM
13" 55 - 59 CM
14" 59 - 63 CM
15" 63 - 65 CM
15" 1/2 65 - 67 CM
16" >67 CM
SIZING FOR CELLOS

Directions for Measuring: Sizing cellos is slightly more complicated than sizing violins and violas. The student should be seated at the edge of a chair such that the knees are bent at a ninety-degree angle (feet flat on the floor). The upper edge (back of cello near where the neck joins the body) of the instrument should rest in the centre of the chest (on the sternum) and the C peg should be slightly behind the left ear. The knees should lightly grip the lower bouts ensuring that the corners do not dig into the side of legs. (Corners should be slightly above the inside of the knees). The student should be able to reach both ends of the fingerboard with ease. The chart below shows approximate sizing by age.

Note: 7/8 size cellos are available as well. This can be a useful transitional size or a more comfortable option for those players who prefer a slightly smaller instrument.

SIZE OF CELLO AGE OF CHILD
1/10 4 - 5 YRS
1/8 5 - 6 YRS
1/4 6 - 8 YRS
1/2 8 - 10 YRS
3/4 10 - 12 YRS
4/4 12 - 13+ YRS
SIZING FOR DOUBLE BASSES

Directions for Measuring: The 3/4 size double bass is the standard size for adults. 7/8 size basses and 4/4 sizes basses are made but they are less commonly used. As a rough guideline, when both the bass and the player are standing upright, the bridge should be approximately at the same height as the large knuckles of the student's right hand. The most important issue is that the instrument is comfortable and that the student can reach the higher registers of the fingerboard without difficulty.
The chart below shows approximate sizing by age.

SIZE OF BASS AGE OF CHILD
1/16 3 - 4 YRS
1/10 4 - 5 YRS
1/8 5 - 7 YRS
1/4 7 - 9 YRS
1/2 9 - 13 YRS
3/4 13+ YRS

Load image into Gallery viewer, Forget Me Not Waltz (Keith Sharp) for String Orchestra-Simply for Strings Load image into Gallery viewer, Forget Me Not Waltz (Keith Sharp) for String Orchestra-Simply for Strings
Load image into Gallery viewer, Forget Me Not Waltz (Keith Sharp) for String Orchestra-Simply for Strings Load image into Gallery viewer, Forget Me Not Waltz (Keith Sharp) for String Orchestra-Simply for Strings
Load image into Gallery viewer, Forget Me Not Waltz (Keith Sharp) for String Orchestra-Simply for Strings Load image into Gallery viewer, Forget Me Not Waltz (Keith Sharp) for String Orchestra-Simply for Strings
Load image into Gallery viewer, Forget Me Not Waltz (Keith Sharp) for String Orchestra-Simply for Strings
Load image into Gallery viewer, Forget Me Not Waltz (Keith Sharp) for String Orchestra-Simply for Strings
Load image into Gallery viewer, Forget Me Not Waltz (Keith Sharp) for String Orchestra-Simply for Strings

Forget Me Not Waltz (Keith Sharp) for String Orchestra

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SIZE GUIDE

Memories of old-time dancing during World War I prevail, with couples waltzing away grim realities of the day. Grade 2.5. (High School B).

About the Piece

Memories of old-time dancing during World War I prevail, with couples waltzing away grim realities of the day. This score is a winsome musical-dance escape with charming touches of Mexico. The themes are shared between sections; there is even a Double bass section melody juxtaposed with upper strings pizzicato theme! Ensemble directors will appreciate elements of informed educational design, including skilfully integrated lines, sharing of roles, careful choices of left-hand progression, balanced strokes, and a satisfying yet manageable length. Take a trip down memory lane! 

Duration 2:50 approx. Key - D major.

About the Composer

Keith Sharp has been string educator in The Gap regional state schools of Brisbane, Australia since 1985. In 2012, he commenced teaching at Brisbane State High School where his program focuses on ensemble and group tuition. He enjoys writing imaginative and appealing pieces for string students, many of which are now performed by young players around the world. A selection of the composer’s works is published in the US by The FJH Music Company and Alfreds. Consistently, these educational ensemble pieces have been highlighted as “Editor’s Choice” in the J.W. Pepper Orchestral Music Catalog. Keith holds a Bachelor of Music Degree and a Graduate Diploma of Further Education. He is a Rotary Paul Harris Fellow. In 2006 and 2013 respectively, Keith received a Ryan Recognition and Ashgrove electorate’s, “Educator of the Year” award acknowledging his contribution to music education in the local community. Keith is a past President and committee member of AUSTA Queensland. He regularly appears at schools, music camps and workshops as a guest clinician/composer, teacher and conductor. Keith is co-author of the popular beginner series, Encore On Strings - Music Maestros.

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