An affordable shoulder rest that offers a highly personalized fit.
After a brief encounter with a very basic bar rest as a child my teacher recommended a Wolf and it's been my shoulder rest for both violin and viola for about 30 years now and the one I recommend most frequently to my students. They didn't have the Forte
Secondo when I was first starting, so I used a Primo initially, which is still a better rest than most, but better for bigger, broader shoulders and chests in my experience. Paired with a well fitting chin rest, the half moon shape of the Forte Secondo helps
the instrument hug towards our center of gravity, keeping the left shoulder mobile and the instrument secure. Height and tilt can easily be adjusted, but not everyone may know that the bar can also be bent and twisted to hook over the collarbone and contour
to the upper chest for a highly personalized fit. This feature is a complete game changer. To get a similarly personalized fit in a rest we would probably have to look to Pirastro's Korfker, but they cost hundreds of dollars! Right out of the box the bar of
this rest is usually completely flat across and that is usually uncomfortable and often too high for many people, event with the feet wound all the way down. It sometimes takes a few days or weeks of experimentation, but it becomes a completely different rest
once we've bent it to suit us, so stick with it! A number of years back a student gave me a box full of shoulder and chin rests that she had tried over the years (and disliked). Through that I was able to try about 25 different shoulder rests. None were as
comfortable or had the seemingly endless flexibility of the Wolf Forte Secondo, making it the winner even over popular Kun, Match One, and Bon Musica styles. The only concern I feel with this rest is that sometimes once we've bent it into a contour we like,
the metal arm that allows us to extend or contract one of the feet may stick up and potentially scratch the instrument. In those cases I've had students cover the tip of the metal with duct tape or a more permanent solution could be to get a tool that can
cut through fairly sturdy metal and and cut that arm a bit shorter.