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

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Load image into Gallery viewer, Time Pieces Book 2 for Double Bass and Piano (OUP)
Load image into Gallery viewer, Time Pieces Book 2 for Double Bass and Piano (OUP)
Load image into Gallery viewer, Time Pieces Book 2 for Double Bass and Piano (OUP)

Time Pieces Book 2 for Double Bass and Piano (OUP)

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SKU:9781860965715
SIZE GUIDE

Two volumes containing well-crafted arrangements and original compositions, presented in chronological order, from the 16th century right up to the present day. Includes contrasting styles, from Louis Couperin to Giles Swayne and William Byrd to Gavin Bryars.

Contents: 

  • Kitty of Coleraine [Trad.]
  • Whereat an Ant [William Byrd]
  • Le lardon and La boiteuse (from Pieces de clavessin) [Jean-Philippe Rameau]
  • Allegro from Concerto grosso in C minor, Op. 6 No. 8 [George Frideric Handel]
  • Andante from Sonata No. 9 [Pietro Paradies]
  • Allegro from String Quartet in G minor, Op. 4 No. 2 [Louis Spohr]
  • Canon en ecrevisse (duet) [Luigi Cherubini]
  • Venetian Gondola Song from Sechs Lieder, Op. 57 [Felix Mendelssohn]
  • Hunting Song from Six Songs, Op. 4 [Edvard Grieg]
  • Daydream from Album pour enfants, Op. 39 [Pyotr Il'yich Tchaikovsky]
  • Autumn, Op. 18 No. 3 [Gabriel Fauré]
  • Study No. 17 from Progressive Tutor for the Double Bass [James Pritchard Waud]
  • Cavalryman [Dmitry Borisovich Kabalevsky]
  • Cradle Song [Marie Dare]
  • Gigue [Johann Froberger]
  • Room 42 [Gavin Bryars]
  • Black Bottom [Ray Henderson]
  • Jamaican Rumba [Arthur Benjamin / George Benjamin]
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