So many people, and even some of my students have asked if my arms get tired while playing flute. We have to hold it up anywhere from a couple minutes, to a couple of hours! It can be quite exhausting. So how do we do we keep our arms up for so long without it becoming tiring?
We as flute players get to exercise many parts of our bodies: Our minds, eyes, mouths, lungs, and we even get to build awesome arm muscles! That’s right- we are athletes too! Just like a football player has to keep their minds on the right play, keep their eyes on who they are going to tackle-or the ball in some positions, run a lot, they get to go to the weight rooms to exercise their bodies-especially arms- to do those tackles and make the plays so they can win! We too, get to exercise all those parts of our bodies.
“Be patient with your arms.”
If your arms are hurting, burning, aching, etc. this is normal – especially for new flutists. Their muscles haven’t quite “man-ed” up to what they need to be just yet. Be patient with your arms. It takes time to build muscles. Those football players aren’t strong after their first bench press, but must continue to building those muscles.
I’m sorry to say that there is no cure to “arm fatigue” except to keep playing and focus/fight to not get slouchy with your position. Having a good body position will allow the correct muscles to grow in their correct places. The pain and tiredness will eventually go away. I Promise.
Spend a little more time each day practicing so that your arms can build those muscles. If it continues after a few months of playing with correct position, maybe your flute is too big (if you’re a small child) or you could consider the need to hit the gym. You can do it!