Play Your Accordion Without Pain - author John Bonica

Read about the author John Bonica CMP NZRP PT (1942-2018) below and find out why this book has been described as: "The definitive reference for players of all ages, teachers and professionals."

Price: US$22 (or Euro equivalent). This is an ebook so it will be sent to you by email as as Acrobat pdf.
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Chapters: Introduction
Chapter 1 - An Overview
Chapter 2 - Learning to Read Your Body’s Signals
Chapter 3 - Neck and Neck-Related Symptoms
Chapter 4 - The Shoulder
Chapter 5 - The Amazing Brain and What It Does For You
Chapter 6 - The Elbow
Chapter 7 - The Great Accordion Myth Uncovered
Chapter 8 - The Elbow Revisited
Chapter 9 - Wrist and Fingers
Chapter 10 - Caring for our Ten Precious Digits
Chapter 11 - Low Back Pain
Chapter 12 - So You Have Low Back Pain ...... What Can You Do?
Chapter 13 - Back Pain, The More Serious Symptoms
Chapter 14 - The Great Imposters: Back Pain From Other Sources
Chapter 15 - Conditions That Primarily Affect Accordionists
Chapter 16 - Warm Up - Before You Play
Chapter 17 - The Accordion: A Back Breaker
Oh, My Aching Neck and Shoulders!
An Exercise Program That May Help
Chapter 18 - Is Your Wrist Slowing Down Your Fingers
Chapter 19 - Frequently misdiagnosed medical conditions of the arm and hand - Carpal Tunnel Syndrome
Chapter 20 - Other Arm/Hand Conditions Which Affect Playing Your Accordion

This is an ebook so it will be sent to you as as Acrobat pdf.
John Bonica

About the Author and Aims of this Book by John Bonica:

I was born, raised and educated in New Zealand of Italian parents.  The accordion came naturally to me as my dad, his dad, and all his brothers played.  Our house was filled with accordion music, singing, wine and pasta.  They were happy days indeed!

In 1963 I graduated with a degree in manual physical therapy, a branch of physical medicine specializing in spinal and extremity trauma.  I was fortunate to have had the opportunity to study under several of the finest minds around the world and then practiced for 17 years in New Zealand.

Since emigrating to the USA in 1980 to teach and further my studies in physical medicine, 31 years have passed. I am about to retire from active practice, having passed on much of what I have learned in nearly 50 years of healing painful bodies.  I have always been fascinated with why things hurt, rather than being content to just relieve symptoms. My experience has enabled me to meet some of the legends of the accordion, and to help solve some of the injuries that can occur over time for many fellow accordionists.

I believe I have the distinct advantage over other health practitioners in that I have continued to actively play the accordion, though today spend my time in the recording studio, rather than keeping up a repetoire.  Recording often for several hours at a time, gives me a better understanding of what it takes to play without injuring or straining the body, as I have never been hurt by my accordion activity.

As an accordionist for over 50 years, and my day job in the medical profession as a specialist in spinal, extremity joint, and soft tissue diagnosis and treatment, I have made a lifetime study of mechanical pain, and have at my disposal many different treatment and prevention options.  I am able to utilize not just one method or theory, but many viewpoints and techniques to suit the diagnosis.

Not all injuries are exactly the same.  Consequently the "one size fits all" regimen of exercise and strengthening to address an injury seldom produces satisfactory results.

Part of my treatment process is establishing the actual mechanical CAUSE of the pain and addressing this while teaching the patient what to avoid and what to do to prevent recurrence of the injury.  PREVENTION IS WORTH A THOUSAND CURES.  So says the old Chinese proverb, and it is true.

Over the years I have read much advice from professionals and well meaning amateurs given to accordionists when attempting to treat their various accordion related injuries. While the intent is well meant, it is often just plain wrong! This book, in part, will give you the knowledge and the direction to seek out appropriate care and advice, saving you time and money by avoiding practitioners that promise a cure, but do not deliver as promised. As a general principle avoid healthcare providers who tell you the cure will take months or years to achieve. Any solution that is worthwhile usually occurs in a few weeks, and relief of pain and improved function is progressively experienced early on in most cases. Longstanding injuries, or severe trauma are the exceptions.

This book is long overdue, and is designed to give the reader an understanding in plain easy to understand terms, how to recognize the early warning signs and avoid accordion related injury.  I will cover basic self-treatment including preventative measures in order that you, the reader, may enjoy your chosen instrument for many more years without having to restrict, or give up playing completely because of injury.

Over my long career I have had the pleasure of meeting, personally treating and advising many accordion luminaries.  Among them, to name just a few, are Galla-Rini, Semionov, Myron Floren, Jorgen Sundeqvist, Frank Marocco, Harley Jones and my good friends, Stas Venglevski and John Simkus, plus many more who have emailed, phoned or made the journey to my clinic for help.  Necks, low backs, wrists, fingers, elbows, tendinitis, arthritis, carpal tunnel and shoulder weakness/injury can be involved mechanically and neurologically.  Often the problems are chronic, complex and specific to the individual.

What works for one individual may not work as well for others, but the symptoms typically experienced by accordionists will be described in this book and may allow readers to identify the contributing cause of their problem or injury.  They can then try the “do it yourself “ suggestions I will outline.  As a word of caution, if symptoms persist despite your efforts, or worsen, seek appropriate help from a medical professional earlier rather than later.

In the initial chapters I will be writing about myths, common injuries and pain associated with playing and transporting the instrument, as well as some easy to understand anatomy, specific symptoms and signs of impending injury, and what to do before the symptoms get out of control.

I hope to address various types of accordion and I hope my information and guidance will help resolve the misinformation and myths regarding treatment options for physical problems arising from the playing of the  accordion and extend  your enjoyment and ability to play without pain well into your golden (rusty) years.

John Bonica PT CMP NZRP (New Zealand and USA) July 2012

John Patrick Bonica

Obituary: March 17, 1942 - March 20, 2018

John Bonica suffered a heart attack and heart failure with no prior discernible symptoms. John Bonica had just finally retired from his practice after 55 years and he and his wife Ellen had nearly finished winding the business down when John unexpectedly and most sadly passed away.

Born in New Zealand in 1942 of Italian parents, John Bonica grew up in a family of accordion players, and taught himself to play the instrument by ear. He learned to play Chopin’s ‘Minute Waltz’ by listening to a recording by Charles Magnante, but then also learned to read music so he could enter competitions. He won the New Zealand Championship several years in the duet, trio and quartet sections. He won second place at the New Zealand Open Championship in 1978 in the solo division.

In 1963 he graduated with a degree in manual physical therapy, a branch of physical medicine specializing in spinal and extremity trauma, and then practised for 17 years in New Zealand. His practical and theoretical knowledge led to the publication of his book 'Play Your Accordion Without Pain', available via Accordions Worldwide.

John Bonica , L.P.T., N.Z.R.P., emigrated to the USA in 1980 to teach spinal specialists and continue his practice of spinal therapy. He founded the Pacific Spinal and Orthopaedic Manual Therapy Clinic, a subsidiary of Rockwood Orthopaedic and Sports Physical Clinic, P.C., located in Portland, Oregon, USA.

He has recorded four CDs of Italian and European folk music utilizing a MIDI orchestra ensemble. Other activities include writing and publishing (he was editor and publisher for the US published ‘Accordion World’ magazine from 1989 until 1994), and a love of sailing and photography throughout his life.