Learn Flute Podcast SHOW NOTES:
In this episode, you will learn about the offset G versus the in-line G on the flute.
This is the Learn Flute Podcast Episode 008.
What this podcast will be all about
- Information on this podcast is supplemental to LearnFluteOnline.com
- What is an offset G
- Whether you should have an offset G flute or an in-line G flute
- What type of flute Rebecca prefers
- The issues flute players need to worry about
Learn Flute Podcast 008
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This is the Learn Flute Podcast – Episode 8!
Greetings today from wherever you are in the world. I’m Rebecca Fuller the expert at Learn Flute Online dot com and this Learn Flute Podcast where I have the pleasure of helping you with your flute learning journey.. step by step and with a lot of fun as well.
This morning I was checking uploading some new training videos into a new learning module over at the Learn Flute Online dot com website and I noticed a little world map in the corner of the page where I host my videos. Interesting thing is that it shows that we have people from literally all corners of the earth learning here at Learn Flute Online. And, this can not make me happier. I am thrilled to see the universal language of music being spread so far. I actually took a little snapshot of the map and posted it to the Learn Flute Online facebook page.
I have to say you’re a pretty cool bunch of flute learners.
In episode 5 of this podcast I talked a little bit about a feature on the flutes which confuses a lot of people when they go quote shopping for a flute which makes us wonder if you should use a flute that has open or closed holes. In that episode I basically told you it didn’t matter so much. Now as I look through the common questions I get from people via email or inside the comment sections over on the Learn Flute Online website, I saw another common thread that I can help you with here today. For example, here is a directly copy and pasted question from a student just the other day;
“forgive my ignorance, but what exactly is meant by an ‘in-line’ G?”
Ah, okay. No problem, I can explain this “in-line G question” to you. If you take a flute and put it up to one eye (with the mouth piece closest to your face) and position it as if it were a telescope checking out something far away, you will notice that the keys are kind of in a straight line… that is depending on which G keys you have.
So, if you look carefully at the two keys on either side of the left hand pinky key – you know, the one that pokes out so your pinky finger can reach. Take a close look at the key on either side of it and determine if it is in-line with the other keys or if they are tipped down.
A flute that is considered “Off-set” will have those two keys positioned on a slant – and that’s for a bit of a more comfortable reach for that third finger of yours. So try this; take your left hand and put it up in front of your face with the back of your hand facing you. Now check out the size of your fingers. You have your thumb, your first (or index) finger, your second finger (or tall man), your third finger (I call it your ring finger since that’s the finger we put our wedding bands on here in America anyway), and last is our small pinky. Ok- your ring finger is responsible for pushing the G key down when you play the flute. If your flute has ‘off-set’ G keys then they will be easier for that third finger to reach.
Now, to answer more fully the question of “what is an in-line G”, it is a flute that has been made with the G key – which is the one just before the poking out pinky key – it’s been made so that it is up and ‘in line’ with the rest of the keys. Your third finger has a lot farther to reach when these are ‘in line’.
Now, you may be wondering which one is best. So, here is your answer: I believe that a human being should play their instrument in the most natural position their body can be in. This is because when we play for years and years and years, we have a lot of repetitive motions, and it is best for our muscles and joints not to pull them out of whack too often.
You see a lot of tennis players get something called ‘tennis elbow’ or bank teller who have to use a banking machine every day where they type repetitively on the number pad.. they often get something called ‘carpal tunnel syndrome’ (which is actually a whole other subject for another day). Well, the reason I bring this up is because flute players have the same issues to think about.
Now to bring it back around here to this in-line or off-set G question I have to ask; which position is more natural for your hand to be in?
Well, for me, I actually spent my first 8 years of playing the flute on an off-set G model.. I think I actually had 4 different flutes during those years… all off set G wich you see most student models are in.
Then, for the next 15 years I used an in-line G flute. And I should say here that I didn’t purchase that flute because of the in-line G, it was basically because of everything else. It just fit me well at that time.
But, when I was ready for my next flute, I went back to the off-set G because it is so much more comfortable. I really feel I play a little faster on the off-set G flute because my fingers are laid more naturally.
If you’ve been in to any of the lessons over at Learn Flute Online lately, you may see me using different flutes. That’s because I realize there are many different types, models, and makes out there. And, I want to let you know that you can learn on any of them. I use student models, even all the way down to the little prodigy size and curved head flutes. I use student straight models with off set G’s. I have a nice step-up Intermediate model that has the in-line G I use quite often in the videos,.. and then also some advanced models.
So,.. I hope this is giving you the idea that it doesn’t really matter if you choose a flute that is in-line or offset, just as long as you take into consideration that you’ll do the best for the rest of your life if you are making sure your body is feeling natural. For me, I’ve decided that the off-set G is more anatomically correct because my third finger, my G finger, or you can call it your ring finger is shorter than my second finger – so it will have farther to reach. It just makes sense that I would choose the off-set keys.
Next time you may be shopping for a flute online or off, you’ll now notice this feature and you’re going to be smarter for sure.
Well, I hope you’ve enjoyed that little tid-bit of knowledge today. I really do have a good time sharing with you. And, I want to remind you that if you have any questions you’d like me to answer on air here, all you have to do is going over to my website: Learn Flute Online dot com forward slash ‘feedback’. That’s where you’ll be able to click to my nifty online ‘asking’ software, where you can just push the button and talk to me. I’ll then put your question in queue and hopefully you’ll hear it here on the Learn Flute Podcast someday. Occasionally, I’ll use your exact recording so it would be especially great if you leave your name and where you’re learning flute from. That’s always fun for us to find out where the rest of our flute friends are in this world. I love technology – and I love traveling – and, I really like meeting you.
Speaking of meeting you, I spent some time in the country of Portugal recently where I was able to sit at nice gelato shop with a few of you who are in my online lesson series. That was fabulous! It let me do more than just reach out through cyberspace. There were several of us there, and we had a great time.
I like to know what you are learning, what you are struggling with, and how your journey is going. It helps me put out the content you ask for and need.
Today, to end with I’d like to share a sweet comment from another flute friend in our Learn Flute Online community who says “You are a great teacher. I knew of a great vocal teacher who used to say that she could make a stone sing. I think you could make a stone play the flute.”
Haha, I love it! Thanks so much for the compliment. I appreciate it, and wish you well this week in your learning and every other endeavor you have.
Thank you for Tuning In!
I hope you’ve enjoyed learning all about the flute! Did you enjoy our Offset G Explanation versus the in-line G on the flute? Join us for the next episode.