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Posts: 841
Reply with quote  #16 
Originally Posted by "fossesitar"
Lately I have been playing seated on a fairly low coffee table with a pad on top, both feet on the ground, because it allows me to straighten my back (avoiding my lower back issues for the most part). In order to be ABLE to comfortably and solidly support the sitar in this mode, I am going to design an extendable brace that goes from where the gourd meets the neck (close to the place where the neck rests on the thigh), with a curved plate to rest on the right thigh. Already tried this out using a wooden box and it is helpful. I do not know how many others on this forum have difficulty assuming the traditional holding and playing position but I do WANT to practice longer hours and this is the way for ME to do that, and still use the lower neck position. Hopefully it will be of use to others as well, it will be included with every Fosse but of course will be detachable, and adjustable in length for those who prefer 45 degree neck angle, but wish to sit western style.

For many of us the sitting position is a major challenge. This whole issue was a major problem for me even 40 years ago when I was with VK in Simla, my lower back was broken at age 15. So I am finally making a strut with plate for support. it will not be well received by certain Ustads - or most self-appointed experts - but if I can hold and play the sitar for hours on end it works for me! GF
I would be interested in this, also and will PM you soon in this regard. However, please also place a link to the video you were refering to as I'm too lazy and pressed for time to dig it up ops: .

Let's hope 2016 is less violent and that people discover the soothing influence of ICM. Hari OM!

Posts: 983
Reply with quote  #17 
Sitarfixer wrote: Imagine an overstuffed recliner with all the hardware connected holding a sitar, drink holder, remote, finger oil holder, mizrab tray. Oh, yeah ! ! !
Misrab Tray?? Do tell!! But you forgot the Bong and the dancin' girls.......

As for your "isolation technology" it is a most valid concept. We will talk.........

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Posts: 291
Reply with quote  #18 
Very interesting discussion.
When I read the first post I went on a search for VK videos to have a look at how he played.

I found this one:

He plays at a 45 degree angle and I don't see very much of the index finger two fret back meend style.

Not saying anyone is wrong because this discussion is way over my head but just thought it was curious.

Posts: 6
Reply with quote  #19 
If a beginning American sitar student may be permitted to ask a question...

I am limber enough to be able to assume the traditonal position, but after about 10 minutes my left foot on which the toomba rests falls asleep, followed shortly by the right. It's really quite painful, forces me to stop practicing until feeling returns.

Since pressure is on the lateral side of the calves in both cases, I believe this is due to compression of the nerves (peroneal?) that run down the outside of both calves, not to any blood vessel problems. Anyway, I have tried all manner of padding and other ideas of my own to prevent this, but so far nothing works.

Does anyone know a solution besides not sitting in this position in the first place?

Posts: 983
Reply with quote  #20 
"They" say that if you sit in these positions long enough you finally adjust. I have NOT found that to be the case. I do not believe westerners ever adapt completely to these Yogi positions (that is what we are dealing with here) after spending their entire lives sitting in a chair. I guess it depends what is truly important to you and where your priorities lie. I am in love with the MUSIC, and with playing the SITAR. So in spite of the fact that I taught Yoga for several years and practiced it rigoeously when I was in India, I have let go of the idea that I will ever be able to sit and hold the instrument in the traditional manner for hours on end. Instead I have doctored up a system where I sit on a bench which has room for me AND the sitar. The latest iteration of the FOSSE electric sitar is actually going to have a body similar to a Stratocaster and/or Precision Bass. There will still be toomba plates attached to the lower bout so the sitar can be held in the traditional manner on the left foot etc. But the extra "horns" will better suit western players who wish to sit on a bench and also allow (FINALLY!!) the sitar to be played STANDING ON STAGE by simply attaching a strap. Take the best from the east and the west and maybe we will have something EVERYBODY can play............
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