Alban's Blog

Backpain – the cellist’s fate

Or at least I thought so for the longest time; since my early twenties I suffered of lower back pain, and I tried everything to get rid of it.At the beginning I tried simple back exercises in a gym, which helped a bit, but as soon as I stopped going there because I found it humiliating the pain returned. Then I tried several doctors, Yoga, Feldenkreis, also tried to ignore it, but over the years it got worse and worse.

Three years ago, after I fell with my scooter onto my shoulder, I added pain in the shoulder which started moving into my left arm and finally into the wrist. Scary. I found an osteopath and a specialist for musicians, and nothing helped. To tell you the truth, I even started thinking about a life after the cello.

And then I met my saviour, this real cool guy here in Berlin, who has his own version of “Rolfing”. I won’t even try to explain what he has been doing with me, but I went there now 12 times, and for the first time in 18 years I am completely pain-free – a real miracle! After long flights I am not sore anymore, I even feel well rested.

His name is Adjo Zorn, and he has this webpage, check it out, I swear on the guy. He even changed my way of sitting behind the cello, even of shifting. It’s all about deep breathing and true relaxing in any situation. The whole body composure matters, and I was far too stiff, and so are many other musicians.


  • charles sage

    Hey there,

    You don’t need back problems as a cellist. Get a solofex whole body massager. It is like a low massage table that you can lie down on. it will do two things: make you feel better and actually strengthen back muscles. If this doesn’t help, there are additional ways. If I ever have time, I will bog out in detail.

    I am on cellobloggers too.

    I would like to know how you put music on your site. Neat. And really like your playing, impressive, and that is rare for me. Let me know if you perform in NY and my wife and I will come.

    Check out my (one) blog entry on bogspot about vibrato and see if you have anything to add.

    Charles Sage

  • Alban

    Hi Charles,

    thanks for the input, but I don’t need any massage anymore, my backpain has disappeared for good – but I keep it in mind.

    I will be playing in New York on January 26th 2008, it’s my Carnegie Hall debut, very exciting ๐Ÿ™‚ (Brahms Double Concerto and a world premiere of a piece by Osvaldo Golijov).

    I am on the run, but I’ll check out your celloblog as soon as I have time (what page is it?)

    Best wishes,



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