Health and Wellness Physical Health Resources

Physical Health Resources

 Physical health bears one of the most significant roles in a musician’s ability to practice their art. When physical health is compromised, not only are
everyday tasks affected but practice and performance may be hindered. The following resources are not intended to provide a tool for self-diagnosis, nor treatment,
but rather a means of learning about the various physical health concerns musicians may experience. Seeing your Primary Care Physician is the perfect place to start.

A 5-Step Response to Symptoms

1) Stop.
2) Rest.
3) ICE – cold reduces pain and swelling. ***Heat should NEVER be used with swelling.
4) Get help. Don’t panic, prompt help usually results in recovery.
5) Self-care. Do nice things for yourself – take walks, breathe, talk to someone, get a massage!


Respiratory Issues

Asthma – inflamed airways, muscles tighten, and swelling occurs
American Academy of Allergy Asthma & Immunology

 Allergies – one of the most common conditions, including allergies to pollen/mold/pets
American Academy of Allergy Asthma & Immunology

Hypersensitivity Pneumonitis – pulmonary disorder caused by inhaled antigens
National Library of Medicine, National Institutes of Health



Pain While Playing (Overuse Injuries) – largely the result of lengthy practice sessions, repetitive motions, excess tension/awkward
body position, difficult repertoire, and unfamiliar instruments


Carpal Tunnel Syndrome – compression of the median nerve in the wrist, causing numbness, tingling, and/or pain in the hand, arm, and wrist

American Academy of Orthopedic Surgeons/Ortho Info:–conditions/carpal-tunnel-syndrome/

National Institute of Neurological Disorders and Stroke

American College of Rheumatology


Medial Epicondylitis – Tendonitis

Tennis Elbow – inflammation or micro-tearing of tendons between forearm and elbow

American Academy of Orthopedic Surgeons/Ortho Info:–conditions/tennis-elbow-lateral-epicondylitis/

Mayo Clinic:

Golfers Elbow – inflammation or micro-tearing of tendons between forearm and elbow

John’s Hopkins Medicine:

Mayo Clinic:

Musician or Focal Dystonia – a neurological disorder characterized by cramping, involuntary muscle contractions, and/or lapses in ability to perform on an instrument, most commonly affecting the embouchure and hands.

Dystonia Medical Research Foundation:

Musician’s Focal Dystonia: