The Prevalence of Playing-related Musculoskeletal Disorders Among Professional Orchestra Players


The prevalence of playing-related musculoskeletal disorders (PRMSD) among musicians is high and sever- al causes, such as the quality of working conditions can influence their onset. The aim of this study was to study the influence of working conditions on the prevalence of PRMSD. Three professional orchestras were invited to take part in the study. They were then divided into two groups according to the working conditions they offered. Group A was considered to present adequate working conditions and group B was not. PRMSD and its intensity, as measured by Verbal Numeric Scale (VNS), were registered through an individual semi-structured interview. Group B presented a higher percentage of self-reported PRMS complaints (67.4%) than group A (59.4%). VNS values were also higher (p value= 0.021) in group B (VNS=5.1) than in group A (VNS=4.0). Results suggest that the prevalence and the sever- ity of PRMSD could be reduced by adequate working conditions.

Keywords: Working conditions, Playing-related musculoskeletal disorders, Orchestra musicians, Working related problems, Professional musicians.


Cláudia Maria Gomes de Sousa (Universidade do Porto, Porto, Portugal)

Henry Johannes Greten (Instituto de Ciências Biomédicas – Universidade do Porto, Porto, Portugal)

Jorge Machado (Instituto de Ciências Biomédicas – Universidade do Porto, Porto, Portugal)

Daniela Coimbra – Coordenadora do Projeto (Escola Superior de Música e das Artes do Espetáculo do Porto – ESMAE/IPP – Instituto de Investigação em Artes, Design e Sociedade da Universidade do Porto)

Year 2014
Type Journal Article with peer review
Publication Revista Música Hodie, 14(2)
Pages 111-121
ISBN / ISSN ISSN: 2317-6776
Language English