Once the parent purchases a violin for your child who is a beginning player, the parent quickly finds out that the violin, bow and case is only the beginning. To allow one’s child the richest playing experience – especially if the child is taking lessons in school or studying privately – an additional minimum investment in the proper violin accessories is necessary.
Probably the single most important accessory to purchase is better and additional violin strings. One cannot overstate the importance of good, high-end violin strings, and for a number of reasons. If a parent purchases a beginner violin online or from a private party, odds are that the violin is outfitted with cheap, low-end strings. On the other hand, if a parent purchases a beginner violin from a reputable violin shop, odds are that the violin is outfitted with higher-end strings that are appropriate for that particular violin.
Violin strings come in many, many different qualities and brands and just changing and upgrading the strings can noticeably improve the sound of the violin. The right strings can actually make playing the violin easier for the student; the easier the intermediate violin is to play, the more likely it is that the child will continue to play it.
If a parent decides to upgrade the strings for the beginning student, the best thing to do is to take the violin to a local violin shop that not only maintains and repairs violins, but that also sells accessories for the violin. Ask them their advice on which strings are appropriate for the student violin. If you purchased the violin from an online store or a private party, this would be a good time to ask the violin shop if the violin is properly set up for a student player.
Not only will they recommend and restring the violin, but they may also recommend a new bridge, a carved piece of wood that supports the strings on the violin. Adjusting the size and position of the bridge can, like upgrading the strings, make the violin much easier to play, as well as improve the sound of the instrument.
Once the violin is restrung, a parent should not hesitate to ask the violin shop to instruct them on how to restring an instrument, in case that the student breaks a string while playing. This brings up an important point: Make sure that you purchase a backup set of strings to keep in the student’s violin case. While a student is learning to play and to tune his or her own instrument, it is very likely a string can break.