I was recently in a bad car accident (harpmobile totaled, right arm took the impact of the collision while holding steering wheel), and my hand specialists are trying to sort out nerve damage and tendinitis as a result. They are completely unfamiliar with the physical requirements of professionally playing the harp, and so are unable to determine when I will be fit to safely work again.
I am trying to provide them with a description of what the requirements of a harpist’s hand/arm are. I had read years ago that the strength and endurance levels are physically similar to a tennis player’s arm, but can’t remember the source of that info. These are doctors, so any hard facts or published stats/quotes I can show them would be immensely helpful in helping them understand. (They tend to believe the harp is very graceful and delicate and how hard can it BE to pull those thin little strings? LOL.)
Without more specific information on what a harpist’s arm must be capable of, the docs are preparing me as if I had a desk job, which as you know, is not the same thing at all. And since the other driver’s insurance company wants to only cover my treatment “until I can return to work”, I need a pretty clear and objective description for the docs of what that entails in physical terms.
Does anyone have any information on the “science” behind playing the harp I can present them? How many pounds of pressure does the hand need to exert to pull a string? What sport is most similar in terms of muscle endurance in the arm? You harp teachers are probably fonts of information on the trivia and data of playing the harp. Anything you can provide me would be appreciated.