I prefer the neck strap currently just because i am very active with bassoon and haveing a seatstrap is to hard to deal with.
(There was a time that i forgot to put my neck strap in my case, so when i went to my concert i only had the seat strap, then i forgot to put the seat strap away so when i went to my concert a week later i had no strap.)
*Bassoon neck straps are XL tenor sax strap. most have to be special order
That must have been interesting - playing with no strap. I use a seat strap but am beginning to wish I had one with a cup instead of a hook at the bottom, for standing up in between pieces. The first bassoonist in our big city orch. uses one, and I used to watch him and wonder how he got up so quickly to take bows, etc. Then I realized he used this type strap and could stand up easily and sit back down easily without all that fiddling with the seat strap.
When we have to be active (walking to an outdoor performance place or some such, I wear a neck strap to carry it but still use the seat strap to play, so I have this neck strap hanging around my neck all the time anyway.
Hmm. I know several people who play on spikes. I guess that's useful when it comes to standing up to take bows and whatever. I personally prefer the seat strap - it's not really all that much effort to adjust it, and just make sure you're holding your bassoon when you stand up so it doesn't drop. I prefer it to a spike because it gives you more freedom of movement. I really (really) don't like neck straps, because I find the bassoon hangs really awkwardly which makes it harder to play, and having a heavy instrument hanging round my neck gets pretty painful.
I have heard of this stand which you put on your leg, then you put your bassoon onto that. I've heard lots of good things about it, apparently it takes all of the weight off your hands, and it gives you freedom of movement to play. though, obviously, you can't play standing up.
When i started out i had no seet strap...my band director finally gave me a seat strap in mid may (i started in early april)....so when i would be done playing my hands would be cramped and red... i donmt recommend it...
That's because you weren't using it properly. When using a seat strap, you have to bend your crook (very very very carefully) so it's the right shape so you can play with the bassoon more upright. Then you bring the seat strap further forward on the chair. If you do that then you'll have barely any weight on your left hand, and you should be able to balance your instrument safely on the knuckle on your left hand.
I've always used a neck strap but recently in longer pieces I find it gets painful. I practice standing and prefer to stand but for concerts I'm thinking of getting something better so i don't damage my neck and back.
Seat straps look a bit awkward but i've also seen some harnesses which are like neck straps but with more support. They look ugly but they might be better than a seat strap. Any ideas?
Yeh I think I know what you mean, a kinda harness that so the weight is on your back not your neck?
I had a lesson with a brilliant teacher a couple of weeks ago, and he showed me his bassoon, where he's had a kinda extension to the loop where you hook the sling. this extension is basically a bit of metal with holes in it, so you can hook your sling higher than that loop. I tried it, and it actually makes a hell of a lot of difference. It feels much less heavy, and the bassoon stands more upright so it's a lot more comfortable hanging from your neck. Maybe something you could look into if you play on neck straps a lot.
without it it gets awkward because the left hand has to support the weight of the instrument and shifts it's position (eg the thumb becomes more perpendicular)
When you have a seat strap properly adjusted and you move your right leg out a tad you can almost balance it on the leg without your hands, so there is no weight on your left hand and the thumb can zip around very easily.
You still want to make sure the bassoon is not at too low an angle... the straighter up it is the less problem I have with condensation and bubbly sounds in the bocal or the D hole.
I haven't really tried a neck strap because I'm so happy on a seat strap.
I'm still learning slowly... mostly C,F,Bb major so far
I hate standing, but only because the sling hurts my neck. But I'm planning on getting this harness thing for standing, it takes all the weight off your neck and spreads it across your back.
Also, I've recently found out about this extension that you can attach on to the hook on the bassoon, so the sling hooks on higher. This shifts the weight completely and makes the bassoon feel much lighter, making it much less painful to play with a neck strap. However, these cost about £80 so think i'll be coping with the harness.
If you're interested, search google for the howarths website.
Seat strap; the neck strap begins to hurt the neck after a while. I don't play with a crook, and you can easily take off a "hooked" seat strap if you put a keychain ring through the hole in the base of the boot.