The role of the body of the player in trumpet pedagogy has either tended to go unrecognised, or the ability of the body to find appropriate techniques has been assumed. However, there has been increasing recognition that bodily posture is important, both in terms of its impact on performance and longer-term injury prevention. As a result, the literature of brass pedagogy has tried to identify the typical posture problems found in trumpet players and arrived at a consensus regarding optimal alignment of the body. The suggestion is that, standing or seated, the player should be upright with back and neck straight (Dalgleish & Spencer 2014).
This leads us to introduce a new aid that uses a combination of hardware and software to analyse the posture of a player and attempt to improve it in via the application of real-time feedback. Three common types of posture issue can be identified (Figure 1). These are: the head rotated forward thereby restricting the flow of air; the head rotated forward and the sternum collapsed, thus inhibiting respiration; excessive lateral twisting and strain. More detailed discussion can be found in earlier work by the authors (Dalgleish & Spencer 2014).