The ErgoBass – A Review
He has done a brilliant job designing the perfect bass analog to a violinists shoulder rest. It is adjustable in length and all different angles so every bassist can find the perfect fit. It is very well made and designed. It clips on the bass in seconds and stay on securely throughout playing.
BACKGROUND STORY or “Back” story (pun intended)
I’ve been having back issues for years due to a wonderful combination of bad posture, double bass playing, being an orchestra teacher, muscle imbalances, and the usual culprits of aging discs and arthritis in the lumbar region.
In my 30s it was tolerable and responded well to physical therapy. As I got into my 40s the pain worsened and I began to see physiatrists – bone and muscle specialists. They could see issues on the MRI and other tests but there isn’t a lot that can be done. With the pain intensifying I even tried steroid injects directly into the discs.
During the summer of 2017, at the age of 43, my entire spine hurt. It hurt to walk. It was difficult to hold my head up. At the urging of my general physician I decided to revisit physical therapy.
I needed to reexamine my performance posture. I’ve always been a stool / sit down player so I wasn’t ready to try standing with the popular bent and angled endpins. But I needed to change something. I mentioned my issue online and immediately received a message from a fellow bassist urging me try out the ErgoBass. He had been using one for a while with great success in alleviating back issues.
I ordered my ErgoBass on September 8, 2017 and received it one week later. I was impressed how quickly it arrived since it was coming from Germany and had to make it to Chicago.
The price is 179€ which came out to around $202 including shipping at the time.
So I’ve been using it now since September 15, 2017 – about 5 months. I can’t imagine playing without. It brings the bass forward a bit so the left should doesn’t have to be pulled backwards to play. It gives a solid connection to the leg or knee so the bass feels solid and planted into the body and ground.
I like using the ErgoBass so much I have two. One for my home studio and one for my bass at work.
Although Petru’s video suggests setting the rest against the knee I find I like it just above the knee on the side of the quadricep muscle.
Some people find it opens up the sound as there is less of the body dampening the bass. I’m not sure I notice any difference in that regard. However I can much more easily pull a bigger sound with the bow. The ErgoBass creates a perfect leverage spot for the bow contact point and weight.
I’ve also had my students try it out. Although none of them have any back issues they were all immediately impressed with the feel.
If everything in your playing and physical well-being is going great – keep rocking’! But you have any concerns about posture or pain you owe it to yourself to try the ErgoBass. It’s infinitely adjustable for any bass and player. I highly recommend it!