At a recent office hours session, FiddleHed Mary asked, “I’m playing double stops when I don’t want to. That is, I’m bleeding over onto the other strings without intending it. What is the solution?”

Take-home message: The bow angle will determine which string is played.

In case you don’t know, when you play two strings at once, it’s called a double stop.

To answer the question, let’s first approach it from the point of view of what we want to do.

Here’s a helpful exercise:

Single Stop / Double Stop Alternation


Notice how there are three distinct bow angles for the D string, A string and the double stop. Try to minimize the movement of the bow.

Further learning

Fingering and String Crossing Exercises I

Double Stop Exercises

Fingered Double Stops Exercises I

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