I’ve been a violin teacher and performer for several decades, and over the years I’ve tried many different violin shoulder rests. My students always want to know which one is the best shoulder rest, so I thought you might want to know this as well.

Quick Look: Best Violin Shoulder Rests

#1 Best Violin Shoulder Rest Overall: Kun Original 


I’ve chosen the best violin shoulder rests based on my experiences, and I hope this article will help you make a good decision for yourself.

What Is a Violin Shoulder Rest?

A violin shoulder rest simply helps you hold the violin on your shoulder more comfortably so that you can play whatever you want and not worry about dropping your violin.

A violinist showing a violin shoulder rest

Things to Consider When Choosing a Violin Shoulder Rest

The main thing to consider when choosing a shoulder rest is comfort, but there are a few other considerations you should make while looking at different shoulder rests.


You’ll want to make sure to order the right size for your violin. Shoulder rests come in various sizes, and there will be one to fit any size violin.


Shoulder rests can be adjusted by height, by weight, and sometimes by the angle of the pad to the violin. Some shoulder pads are more adjustable than others, so that’s a definite consideration to make. 


Shoulder rests don’t tend to be terribly expensive. You can generally expect to pay from $15 to $40, but some are more than that.

7 Best Violin Shoulder Rests

I’ve chosen 7 of the top violin shoulder rests for you to consider. I’ll try to show the difference between each one and help you make a decision as to which shoulder pad is best for you.

1. Kun Original

  • Size: 4/4, 3/4-1/2, 1/4-1/16 (mini)
  • Dimensions: 7 x 2 x 3 inches
  • Material & finish: Metal, plastic, rubber, foam padding
  • Best for: Anybody

The Kun Original shoulder rest is probably the most popular and well-known shoulder rest on the market, and for good reason. It’s a top shoulder rest. It has good quality and is a solid choice to buy.

✅ Adjusts up to 2 inches
✅ Adjust in 3 directions
✅ Comfortable padding
✅ Good quality shoulder rest
❌ Tends to fall off
❌ Might not fit in a smaller case

Why I Recommend It

The Kun Original is your basic top quality shoulder rest. It’s very popular and for good reason because it fits most people’s needs. It’s a great quality shoulder rest that will last for a long time.

I’ve used this shoulder many times over the years, and I highly recommend it to students.



2. Kun Collapsible

  • Size: 4/4, 3/4-1/2, 1/4-1/16 (mini)
  • Dimensions: 7 x 2 x 3 inches
  • Material & finish: Metal, plastic, rubber, foam padding
  • Best for: Those with a smaller case who need a shoulder rest with collapsible legs

The Kun Collapsible is basically the same as the Kun Original except the legs collapse in order to fit away more snugly when packed up. It’s another quality shoulder rest with great adjustment possibilities.

If you want a more fancy Kun, you can find that sort of thing as well, so look around a little more at the brand.

✅ Adjustable up to 2 inches
✅ Fits in smaller cases
✅ Great quality craftmanship
✅ Padded and comfortable
❌ Legs may get wobbly over time
❌ Not good for long necks

Why I Recommend It

This is another great shoulder rest to choose from. I couldn’t decide if the collapsible leg Kun was actually a different shoulder rest in terms of my list, but both are popular enough that they’re worth two entries.



3. Everest Shoulder Rest

  • Size: 3/4-4/4, 1/2-3/4, 1/10-1/4
  • Dimensions: 9 x 3 x 3 inches
  • Material & finish: Plastic, rubber, and foam
  • Best for: Younger students, more budget minded

I really like the Everest Shoulder Rest as well. It’s a comfortable and sturdy shoulder rest that fits many players well.

It doesn’t adjust as much as some of the other brands, but I find for younger students too much adjustment is overwhelming and they just want something they can use easily.

The Everest also comes in a collapsible leg version, but I’m not listing it as a separate shoulder rest. I know it’s inconsistent because I just did that for the Kun, but hey, it’s my list!

✅ Variety of colors
✅ Adjustable in two directions
✅ Sturdy and comfortable
✅ Great quality for the price
❌ Doesn’t adjust as much as some brands
❌ Sizing isn’t as specific

Why I Recommend It

The Everest is cheaper than many of the other options and is still of great quality. I recommend this rest often to my younger students, and they love the variety of colors.



4. Wolf Forte Primo

  • Size: 4/4-3/4
  • Dimensions: 9.9 x 2.7 x 1.5 inches
  • Material & finish: Metal, foam padding, rubber
  • Best for: Violinists who want a taller and flatter shoulder rest

I’m currently using the Wolf Forte Primo and like it. This is the flattest shoulder rest I know of, though you can make it more curved if you want. It’s also the tallest on the market and is good for those with long necks or more sloped shoulders.

✅ Adjustable up to 3 1/4 inches tall
✅ Rubber on feet can be replaced
✅ Metal bar can be bent to fit any angle you want
✅ High quality and sturdy
❌ Could be hard to find the right fit
❌ Takes up more space in the case

Why I Recommend It

I’ve tried many shoulder rests over the years, and like I said, the Wolf Forte Primo is the one I’m currently using. It’s very comfortable and very adjustable. If you want something tall and super-adjustable, this is the one for you.


5. Bonmusica Violin Shoulder Rest

  • Size: 1/2, 1/4, 3/4, 4/4
  • Dimensions: N/A
  • Material & finish: Metal, foam, rubber
  • Best for: Good for musicians who have shoulder issues

The Bonmusica is a little more unusual in that it “hooks” over the shoulder a bit more. This is a good shoulder rest for people who have had shoulder issues or who find the more traditional fitting shoulder rests uncomfortable.

✅ Padded and curved fit
✅ Very adjustable
✅ Stays on shoulder well
✅ Makes holding violin effortless
❌ Takes up a lot of room in the case
❌ Can be tricky to find the right adjustment

Why I Recommend It

If you’ve had trouble finding a shoulder rest that fits you, I definitely recommend trying the Bonmusica. It’s more unusual and therefore might be just what you need!



6. Mach One Violin Shoulder Rest

  • Size: 4/4-3/4
  • Dimensions: N/A
  • Material & finish: Plastic (or maple in some cases), rubber, foam
  • Best for: Professionals, other hard to fit players

The Mach One Violin Shoulder Rest, like the Bonmusica, might be better for harder-to-fit players. It’s more curved to stay on your shoulder and has smaller feet so it touches the violin less than other brands.

✅ Adjustable
✅ Smaller feet to allow more resonance
✅ Attractive design
✅ Great quality
❌ Could be hard to figure out the best fit
❌ Less padded

Why I Recommend It

The Mach One just sounds cool, doesn’t it? This is the lower end model and it’s a good one if you’re having trouble finding a fit for yourself on the Kun or other similar brands.


7. Wolf Forte Secondo

  • Size: 4/4-3/4
  • Dimensions: 8.6 x 2.9 x 0.7 inches
  • Material & finish: Metal, foam, rubber
  • Best for: Violinists with long necks

The Wolf Forte Secondo is a highly recommended shoulder rest for those who have long necks and want a very high shoulder rest. It’s very adjustable, comfortable, and padded.

✅ Adjusts up to 3 inches tall
✅ Many other adjustment options
✅ Comfortable padding, very soft
✅ Stays on well
❌ May scratch your violin: Be cautious if you aren’t using it on the taller positions.
❌ Can be hard to find the right fit

Why I Recommend It

People love this shoulder rest, and I’ve used it in the past. It’s wonderful and very adjustable. I prefer the Wolf Primo, but this is a good option too.



Best Violin Shoulder Rest Brands


Kun is the most popular shoulder rest brand. They have several great shoulder rest options, ranging from more budget to more professional looking ones. The company has been making shoulder rests since 1968 and was family founded.

Wolf Music Products

Willy Wolf founded the Wolf Company to make shoulder rests in 1964 in his home in Amsterdam. It has grown tremendously since then due to the quality and craftsmanship.


Everest shoulder rests were designed by a Johns Hopkins biomedical engineer, which I thought was really interesting. They’re a newer company, growing in popularity over the past 10 to 15 years.


Bonmusica is a German-based company specializing in violin and viola shoulder rests. They have great quality and excellent engineering.

Mach One

Mach One shoulder rests were first designed in 1997 and have held a small amount of the market.

How Much Do Violin Shoulder Rests Cost?

You’re going to pay between $15 and $60 for any of the shoulder rests on my list. You can find them a bit cheaper and a lot more expensive, but I recommend spending at least $20 to get a decent shoulder rest.

What Are the Best Violin Shoulder Rests?

Wolf Forte Primo: Best for Players With Long Necks Who Need Lots of Adjustment

This is a specific category, but there are plenty out there who need a taller shoulder rest and don’t fit the standard model.

Kun Original: Best All-around

I think the Kun is the best all-around shoulder rest. It will make the majority of violinists happy and satisfied.

Everest: Best Budget Option

Everest shoulder rests are good for students and those on a tighter budget.

Where to Buy Violin Shoulder Rests


Amazon has a good selection, good pricing, excellent shipping, and excellent returns policies.

Online Music Retailers

You can find plenty of other quality retailers online such as Fiddlershop.com, Guitarcenter.com, and Sharmusic.com. I recommend you verify the shipping and returns policy of any retailer you use.

Your Local Music Store

If you have a local music store, you’ll be able to “try before you buy,” so this is a wonderful option.

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In Conclusion

I hope you learned a little bit more about shoulder rests from my post here. It’s hard to describe how things feel, so the best thing to do is to try out some shoulder rests and see what you like best.

The ones I wrote about are all shoulder rests I’ve tried out myself, and they’re all shoulder rests that people I know use and love. You may find one fits you better than others, but all are of great quality.

What kind of shoulder rest do you use? Comment below with your thoughts, and please share this post if you have friends who are violinists too!