Every profession has its tools of the trade, and musicians are no exception. Guitarists have picks, drummers have sticks, woodwind players have reeds - and violists have bows. Your bow is crucial to virtually every playing technique (except pizzicato, of course!) and that makes it almost as important as the viola itself when it comes to your overall performance. How many bows do you own right now? If the answer is "one," consider getting yourself a spare. And if you've got a collection built up already, maybe it's time to grow it a little more? With the range of viola bows to choose from in this section, it's easier than ever to try out a new bow material or replace an aging one with something similar.
For most players, especially beginners, the "viola bow du jour" is made from fiberglass or brazilwood. These are considered the standard materials for viola bows, and you'll find lots of examples here to prove it. There's the Bellafina Student Brazilwood Viola Bow, for instance: it's a solid choice for students in need of an affordable spare bow. A slightly more versatile suggestion would be the Glasser Fiberglass Viola Bow with Plastic Grip, which fits into any budget and has good playing characteristics for violists of all levels.
Maybe you're an experienced, discerning professional interested only in the best of the best? If that's the case, there are a couple of recommendations you don't want to miss. One of those is the Londoner Bows Three Star Viola Bow, which is expertly balanced and hand-carved from Pernambuco wood, with a silver-mounted ebony frog and silver-wound leather grip. Another is the Revelle Phoenix Series Viola Bow - it's a modern design made with woven graphite fibers, resulting in nimble handling that imparts a subtly nuanced sound.
Of course, there are plenty of wooden bows besides the Bellafina and the Londoner, and plenty of synthetics besides the Glasser and the Revelle. All it takes is a quick look through this section to see how many different options you have to choose from, and it's more than worth taking the time. Viola bows are intensely personal things, after all, so the only way to know for sure you've picked out the right one is to have a look at all of them!