How to Hold the Cello
Adjust the endpin such that the top part of the back of the cello rests lightly against your chest, not too high or too low but just about the middle of the chest. The length of the endpin should be around one foot although this may vary depending on your height and the height of your chair, and even the place of positioning free cello sheet music.
You can learn to read music on your own, and you can figure out the most basic of notes on your own, but also you can learn fingering patterns from the classic scale books, such as Klengel, written by a German cellis Julius Klengel.
Make sure the endpin is tightly secured on the floor to prevent the cello from sliding away from you as you lean on it. Probably the best way to do this is by using an endpin holder but if you have a sharper endpin, then it should stick to almost anything.
Position the cello’s neck to the left side of your head with the lowest C string peg almost the same height as your left ear. Whether you are left handed or right handed it doesn’t matter, the neck positioning is always to the left.
While sitting in the chair, maintain an erect posture. You can sit either on the edge, that is, towards the front or back in the chair in case you want to have the back support.
Note that sitting back will require you to extend the endpin so that the back of the cello aligns with your chest.
Left Hand Position
The first cello hand positioning starts with the left hand. To assume the correct position, place the thumb on the back side of the neck and direct the second finger towards the surface of the fingerboard such that it’s opposite to the thumb and perpendicular to the string.
In other words, your hand should form a curved C-shape so that when you squeeze the two fingers together the string is pushed down the fingerboard allowing you to create the middle c-note. Always ensure that the thumb maintains contact with the back of the neck when playing.
When it comes to the left elbow, you should relax the shoulder and raise the elbow slightly so that it floats in a wing like manner. Later on when playing higher positions also referred to as “thumb positions”, you will have to raise the left elbow relatively high and position the thumb on top of the strings as opposed to the back of the neck.
Even if you’re still a beginner cellist, finding free cello sheet music that helps inspire practice will help you make advancements quicker. Our site offers free cello sheet music in a variety of music genres, there are plenty of easy cello songs that you can learn to play.
How to Hold the Cello Bow
The way you hold the bow is important as far as tone production is concerned. So, to begin, the right hand should be the one to hold the bow. The placement of the fingers goes as follows.
The thumb should rest a few inches ahead of the frog just about where it meets the leather pad. The other fingers should curve gently over the stick with the first finger resting ahead of the pad and the second finger in the same position as the thumb but on the opposite side of the stick.
The third finger should occupy the side of the frog exactly where it meets the bow while the index finger takes the center of the frog.
You might not be able to place the fingers precisely as they should but no need to worry, after all every cellist has a different bow grip. The most important thing is to have a firm yet flexible grip with little tension as possible.
Why? You will be moving the bow back and forth horizontally across the strings and sometimes down and up to connect to other strings, so the bow grip is bound to change a bit and that requires flexibility.
Perhaps I should stress that you must refrain from caving your thumb backward or keeping it straight up as this may hinder flexibility of your grip. Just let it bend slightly towards the normal direction.
Finding effective ways to improve your cello skills is easier when you practice with free cello sheet music that you like. And you can do that by exploring around and locate all of your favorite music.