I’m about 5’3″, my teacher is about 5″. I’ve been taking lessons on her very large Salvi. She sits much higher than I do when she plays, even though I’m taller.
When I started playing her Salvi I was almost overwhelmed with the weight, but after quite a bit of experimentation I’ve found the right height, distance, and so on, and now the harp feels like no weight at all.
My point is that sometimes finding the appropriate balance point can be counter-intuitive. I would have been very discouraged if I had continued to play
the “heavy” harp, but now that I’ve figured this out, it’s become a non-problem.
When I was playing viola regularly I developed a partial tear of my rotator cuff,but with the intervention of an interested physical therapist, I no longer have any trouble with that either.