Step-By-Step Guide For The Violin Beginner
Here we cover step-by-step all the resources you’ll need to get started on the violin.
This includes all the essential items, care and maintenance tips, beginning lessons, and more, that will get you up to speed on the violin as fast as possible.
This article is meant to be an overview of everything you need, so along the way we’ll be linking to more detailed articles that explain why we’re recommending this or that.
We’re adding new tips all the time as we try more products, find time to write, and get recommendations from readers like you, so please be patient if some of the sections are marked “coming soon.” They will be!
Here we go…
Step 1: Get Essential Equipment
Here we cover the absolute necessities. The first thing you need to do to get started as a violin beginner is to make sure you have all of the following:
- Buy Violin (instrument itself)
In this article we cover beginner violin price, whether to buy online or at violin shops, violin size, and more. We also give you a recommendation for our favorite beginner violin package.
- Violin Bow
Most beginner violin packages come with a bow. But if you find yourself needing to select a violin bow separately, here is what to look for.
- Violin Case (reviews coming soon)
Many beginner violin packages come with a case. But if yours did not, or if you’re looking to upgrade, we cover what to look for in a violin case, and a list of our favorites.
- Violin Rosin
What is it? Why do you need it? Light or dark? We answer all your questions here, and suggest which kind we think is best for beginning violin.
- Violin Shoulder Rest
What to look for in a violin shoulder rest, how to adjust it, and our recommendations for specific models.
- Music Stand
Portability vs. size vs. stability: our take on what kind of music stand works best for beginning violin.
- Beginner Violin Sheet Music
Most of the violin repertoire, whether classical or fiddle music, is too difficult for beginner violinists. Here we recommend our favorite books for beginner violin that will help you learn to play as fast as possible.
- Armless, Sturdy, Non-Rolling Chair
It is important to play in an armless chair in order to give yourself room when bowing the violin. Chairs with arms limit your range of motion. You probably already have a suitable chair somewhere (folding chairs usually work well), but if you don’t, something like the World Tour Deluxe Padded Keyboard Bench is stable, adjustable, comfortable, and portable.
Step 2: Learn Beginner Violin Care and Maintenance Tips
Okay, now that you have a beginner violin and the necessary items to get started, we’ll cover how to take care of your beginner violin to make sure it remains playable. It’s very easy to damage a violin, so before we dig into the performance basics, you need to know a little bit about violin care:
- Critical Violin Maintenance
IMPORTANT! Here we discuss 12 secrets you need to keep your beginner violin in top shape, prevent damage, and keep it singing for you.
- Violin Tuning and Setup (lesson coming soon)
If you’ve ordered online, your violin probably needs a little setup. Here’s what you need to do. Includes stringing a violin, placing the bridge, and a free online violin tuner.
- Violin Anatomy (Glossary – coming soon)
It’s important that you have a firm understanding of how your violin works. Here we’ll cover what all the parts are called, and what they do.
Step 3: Study Beginner Violin Performance Tips, Lessons, & More
You have several options for how to go about learning to play the violin. Each method has pros and cons, which we cover:
- Free Online Lessons To Get You Started (lessons coming soon)
Here we cover the basics.
- Online Training Course (reviews coming soon)
A full beginner violin course that will train you in any type of violin music, from classical to jazz to fiddle. All for less than the price of one private lesson.
- How to Find and Evaluate Private Violin Teachers (tips coming soon)
Not only can we help you find a violin teacher, we can give you the information necessary to evaluate whether they’re giving you what you need.
Step 4: Get Violin Sheet Music
- How to Read Sheet Music
A two-part lesson where Part 1 provides critical information for those new to sheet music, while Part 2 assumes that you already know how to read music from playing another instrument, so it covers only the information that relates to beginner violin.
- Beginner Violin Sheet Music Resources
There are some great beginner violin sheet music books out there. Here’s a list of our favorites from all different styles, including classical, traditional, holiday, movies, musicals, video games, jazz, pop, and more.
- Ear Training: Learn from the Pros (reviews coming soon)
Some of our favorite professional recordings of the beginner violin repertoire.
Step 5: Buy Beginner Violin Accessories To Get More Out of Your Practice Sessions
These items are not required (strictly speaking) but strongly encouraged:
- Extra Violin Strings
ALWAYS have an extra set of strings with you whenever you have your violin. Otherwise, if you break a string you are SOL until you get a new one. Don’t let that happen to you.
- Violin Tuner Metronomes
One of the big challenges as a violin beginner is to play in tune and in rhythm. Getting a metronome goes a long way toward learning to count rhythms accurately and stay in time. Many metronomes also come with a built-in violin tuner which makes it easy to tune on the fly.
- Violin Practice Mute
If you find yourself traveling a lot, staying in hotels, or otherwise don’t want to bother the people around you with your practicing, you can use a violin practice mute to substantially reduce the volume of your instrument without compromising your technique.
Step 6: Find Community Resources
Ready to step up your game? Join a music group — it will make beginning violin 10x more fun!
- Community Orchestra List (coming soon)
- Feis List – Irish Fiddle Music Competitions (coming soon)
- Start a String Quartet – Craigslist (coming soon)
- How to Earn Money as an Amateur Violinist (coming soon)