guitar wrist pain

Symptoms may include a dull ache, tenderness, or mild … 2. And now that we know the basics, let’s see the action plan. And the fact that let’s say, a few stretches are beneficial for one person, does not mean that they are beneficial to everyone else. Probably the latter. “That said, I also want to give credit where credit’s due – the guitar players that played on Chinese Democracy, Buckethead being one of the main ones – are fucking amazing guitar players. His website looks like it’s from 1998 ( Hi Alan. Many people who enjoy playing guitar may experience pain or discomfort in the hands, wrist (and even back and shoulders) at some point. Does this happen to all beginners or am i doing something wrong? "Also, seek medical help if there is any tingling in the extremity [t he fingertips, for example ] or a change in sensation." Very often the habit of tilting forward when playing guitar remains even as the times goes by. You can always use the unsubscribe link included in the emails. I’m not going to pretend I know a solution to it because I haven’t had it myself and I’m not a lisenced doctor (I definitely don’t want to give you a bad advice). After unusually excessive use of my pinky especially, my wrist is slowing me down. Have you had any of the health problems mentioned in this article? My Experience With Wrist Pain and Tendinitis. And hello: it hurts. Straight wrist. As a guitarist, are you experiencing pain due to consistent guitar playing? The good old icing can be very beneficial when our goal is to bring down inflammation (e.g. You will recover from RSI from guitar play, however, another benefit is … Guitar Tricks Forum > Guitar Basics > Wrist pain playing. You can play for hours and you would be fine. I do some wide vibratos, so it’s a lot of tugging on the wrist. If you are a beginner guitar player, it is normal to have a level of pain in your wrist while your muscles develop and your hand gets stronger. Most likely you are bending your left wrist rather than maintaining a straight wrist. However, in 2017 he actually gave a real interview, which was a talk with his therapist, where he admitted that he suffered from bad posture and back problems for a long time. Pain is a signal that something is not as it should be. I just started playing and i am getting pain in my hand and left wrist trying to get my fingers in the proper position for guitar. The no-pain posture guide to playing guitar. This is a very unnatural position for human’s hand and obviously maintaining that fretting hand position angle will cause pain and discomfort even when playing guitar for a short period of time. Posture. So right now, we have a muscle imbalance that causes altered joint mechanics (leading to joint pain) and probably some irritated tendons. Musicians often first experience tendonitis as a sharp pain located in one spot in the wrist, elbow, or base of the thumb. But the problem is that exercising the wrist in this way only works the muscles that are already too tense: the inner forearm muscles. However, in this article, I would like to pay your attention to the disadvantages of playing the guitar. What I do notice is that I tend to grip quite a bit with the thumb and my thumb does tend to move from side to side as I go up and down the strings -which is when the pain comes. So here’s a better idea: reduce the amount of guitar practice you do by about 50%, and depending on the severity of your symptoms, skip the more technical stuff that strains your hands the most. So here are some tips on preventing finger pain on guitar, and changes you can make should you encounter any discomfort. Like banging into my chest almost. Those tight muscles are most likely the cause of your pain, so they need to be released. It contains a well thought out system of techniques and exercises, along with countless tips about how to increase your playing performance. Here is a quick recap of what parts of your body are in pain when you are holding the guitar “the cool way” just like the cool kids do. This step is the most important and in some cases, it might be enough on its own. As a bonus, the lower bout of the guitar (a jumbo) was now also lower so my right arm was much more comfortable too. This is especially common among beginner guitarists since at this stage they haven’t yet found comfortable positions for holding the guitar and positioning their body. 3. Yes I am. According to Dave Mustaine (Megadeath): Buckethead is probably twice as good a guitar player as me and Slash combined, and can stand having fried chicken rubbed up against his face all night for a couple of hours.’. To help you remember these tips, download this free Guitar Playing Injury Prevention Checklist (you don’t have to enter an email address). Here is my way of positioning the fretting hand: Pay attention to how my wrist extends my arm in a straight line instead of being bent to the right. Anyone who studied anatomy, physiology or physical therapy knows that static stretching before exercise (read: playing guitar) rarely makes sense. So in my 17 years worth of experience playing guitar, I’ve certainly enjoyed my fair share of things like wrist pain and … On the flip side, splints and braces are perfect for relearning to play without excessive wrist bending. Now, add reduced mobility and micro-injuries to the mix, because tense, shortened muscles will resist movement, and that leads to micro-injuries deep in the tissues. If you’ve ever dealt with wrist pain playing guitar or other aches that affect your playing then I urge you to consider what I share in this article. Keeping any joint in a ‘far-from-neutral’ position for too long will cause muscle imbalances and joint problems down the road. This one might be because of too high action on the guitar or simply bad playing habits, but this is 100% true. 4. 5. The guitarstrength course is the best self-care method available to guitarists. Another professional musician who suffered from bad posture is Buckethead. So how do you prevent guitar posture problems? These are recommended all the time to wear at night or even during the day to “compress and support the area and to minimize movement”. So my advice would be to skip this exercise for now (I’ll share my ideas in a minute). This imbalance changes the way muscles pull on the bones. Maybe 4-5 hours straight a day. Plus it teaches the body that it can rely on something external for stability, instead of having to build internal stability with well-functioning muscles and joints. Still using a strap, the back of the guitar rests on your right inner thigh. This type of workload strains the muscles, tendons, joints, and fascia in one exact way over and over, and in time these tissues will begin to adapt to it. This forces out excess fluids from the area and can improve circulation to a degree. Guitar players have been using Powerball for decades. scorpio007582. Guitar playing overloads these muscles, called the “flexors” of the forearm because playing is mostly just finger curling with wrist bending. Guitar wrist pain is a serious issue – learn the dos and don’ts from a movement specialist before looking for a cure. This might be necessary in sever cases and might help in the short-term, but still does nothing to solve the root issue. It must be weak, let’s strengthen it”. Strengthening damaged muscles and tendons is a key element in your recovery. The main symptoms include pain on the outside edge of the elbow, pain when gripping especially while extending the hand at the wrist. Specifically, it was a pain across the back of the wrist that got worse when I would bend my wrist inwards (as though trying to touch the inside of … The closer your finger is to the fret, the less pressure will be required. This is a small lesson on how to get rid of your fretting's hand wrist pain if you have any, hope it works for you. On longer days I will do some pro-active icing though and use shorter practice sessions once past the 3 … Unfortunately, even a lot of experienced guitar players may not pay attention to their body/hands/wrist positioning when playing guitar. Wrist pain is a very common problem among guitar players. Raise the height of your guitar to reduce bending, if necessary. Many people who enjoy playing guitar may experience pain or discomfort in the hands, wrist (and even back and shoulders) at some point. Hi Tom, I’m glad that my article if not helped – at least brought your attention to the topic of body form while playing the guitar. • To get a clean note, the place where you are fretting your notes can play an important role. I for sure know what you mean when you talk about left hand and wrist pain. some hand and wrist pain. For more info check our Affiliate Disclosure page. Consequently, there’s loads of information available online about this topic of “guitar wrist pain” and similar issues, like how to get rid of…, The problem is that most of these tips come from guitar players, and not from health professionals. tendonitis), but people recommend it without even mentioning what is it good for…. Whether it’s Guitar Elbow, or a Tendonitis of the wrist, thumb or fingers, you can all too easily develop one of these painful injuries from playing guitar or any other stringed instrument. (let me know if you are also a fan of Buckethead and wish him well). Develop better body awareness so you can notice if you hold tension anywhere in your body while playing guitar (and then relax them, obviously). Another excellent point, I teach this all the time. So strive for a relatively straight wrist most of the time! is a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for sites to earn fees by advertising and linking to And let’s not forget about tendons: they connect muscles to bones. I find your picture of the Classical pose to be the most comfortable with electric guitars. It’s like it’s due to compressing my hand (bringing left fret hand thumb and pad in towards the centre of my hand and opening up again). Most of this pain and discomfort can be avoided and prevented relatively quickly. So there’s no point in icing if all you have is joint or muscle pain, or a nerve-related problem like tingling, or numbness, and so on (without inflammation). Here is the interview. And Alan, the picture of your avatar, with your LP resting on your right leg… my left hand feels squished playing like that! During this beginner stage, if you are at home practising on your own and suffering from wrist pain. This site uses cookies to personalize your experience and track behavior. Fingering difficult chords became much easier and my wrist pain went away over a period of a couple of weeks. I help musicians get rid of playing-related injuries like wrist pain, tendonitis or carpal tunnel syndrome since 2017 with my 7 years of experience in the field of movement and health. I used to get that a lot when I was learning to play. This can be much easier when you hold the guitar in a classical position. Playing guitar should be an enjoyable, minimally stressful activity, however, strain from overuse and awkward positioning can cause a number of issues in the hands and wrist.. Its symptoms include tingling, pain, numbness or discomfort in the index and middle fingers and thumb, which is hardly ideal when guitarists use all three most often to play. Tendonitis is common among tennis players, golfers, pitchers, swimmers, jumpers, and guitarists. Biggest Cause Of Wrist Pain. But when you look at someone playing guitar from a side or behind – you will clearly notice that often times he or she will be slouching and tilting forward. A light touch, just enough to make a note sound clean, is preferred. He is bringing his forearm downwards, which makes him arch his wrist in order reach the notes. there’s no need to completely put down the guitar. This forms scar tissue over time, which is more pain sensitive and more inflexible, than regular tissue. And you will be wondering about whether you won 2 weeks, or lost 2 weeks. Some guitar players experience thumb pain when playing guitar. I will pay attention to body form! If you are getting shooting pain, then definitely stop. The logic here is as simple as “wrist hurts when playing guitar? Slouching, hunching over the guitar puts extreme stress on the spine, back and neck muscles overwork, nerves can become compressed which may lead to problems locally, or down the arm in the wrist or hand area. We just need to back off a bit so that our body has a chance to regenerate (to make that happen you will need to do something, so read on). No spam, only useful info. Many players (especially beginners) are either not aware of these problems or simply choose to ignore them. While being one of the fastest and the most inspiring guitar players EVER, Buckethead doesn’t have a single social media account. Just thought I'd share a few techniques im using to help deal with a sore wrist from playing the guitar. He had to ask for professional help. In conclusion, all of the above have their place, but recommending them to everyone without understanding the root causes is irresponsible. Of course, there is more to it, but this approach (that is, by the way, the guitarstrength approach) will provide superior gains compared to the general recommendations you can find elsewhere on the internet. Wrist bending was mentioned in this article earlier, and it’s very important indeed. But since it’s a repetitive workload done in a narrow, restricted range of movement, the adaptation will cause imbalances between the muscles, instead of strengthening them all around. A great majority of guitarists are slouching while playing guitar and that doing that for prolonged periods of time impacts our posture. Many people find that by choosing a guitar with a ‘fatter’ neck it alleviates a lot of the discomfort. 4. Let me know if you find a solution to your thumb pain. . Just in case you don’t know about him – he is top 10 fastest guitarist of ALL (!) Guitar Wrist pain – Repair & Strengthen. My tip for you is to hold a guitar the way classical guitar players do. And if you pull on a tendon too strong for months or years, that tendon will have every right to become irritated and then inflamed. Understanding guitar wrist pain. Having to work your wrist and fingers a great deal around a guitar neck can increase the onset of Carpal Tunnel. Also get it from change back and forth from chords to scale runs and back again. when lying flat on back get pins & needles in entire lower arm (like when sleeping on it). Because if you developed wrist pain playing guitar, there’s a chance your wrist is bent too much when you play. Pain is unnecessary, and it hurts. By clicking "Got it", you consent to the use of cookies. The answer lies in the wrist. And of course, they are usually not enough to bring a significant, lasting improvement. But I don t think it s carpal tunnel syndrome because my hand isn t feeling any pain. Can anyone tell me what I should do for this? We look at how to decrease guitar hand pain and promote functional form, while also focusing on preventing wrist stress in your fretting hand. This guitar tendonitis treatment is for both pain relief and better function These are techniques you can do yourself.. Just being aware of this problem made me pay attention to how I position my wrist when playing and this is what you should do as well. It’s hands-down the best investment for any musician, so check it out here: Sign up to enroll in the 8-part Intro Class for free! But excess fluids are only present when the area is inflamed! The reason for this is that static stretching – when you simply hold a stretch for 15-30 seconds or longer – actually turns off muscles, decreasing their performance. few days before felt shoulder pain playing guitar. So strive for verticality – you should be as close to a neutral, normal standing / sitting posture as possible. While fretting notes on the guitar, your fretting wrist should only bend moderately as you curve your fingers to reach for strings. #1. 3. Tendons allow your fingers to move fluidly over the fretboard on your guitar. That is how guitar tendonitis is made. Might be from going from 9-42 to 9-46 gauge strings. It would make sense to add it to the article. Rest. Hi David, are you using “classical” position (guitar on the left leg if you are right-handed)? The latter is especially important since a smarter brain controls the muscles better, which leads to safer and more efficient movement not only in guitar playing but in everything else, too. Barre chords can be particularly difficult so it is important to find a guitar with a neck that can help you. Besides obviously causing pain and cramps in your hand, this position offers very little strength for your grab, making it very hard to play barre or any other chords properly. Most of the time a full stop is recommended for at least 1-2 weeks until the pain goes away. Wrist bending (or wrist flexion, in other words) is necessary with certain wider chords and stuff, but unnecessary most of the time. While it can affect both fretting and picking/strumming hands, most often it becomes a serious issue for the fretting hand. 3. Probably best route to take. The result is even more instability and weakness that leads to even more problems in the long-term. In one of his interviews Paul Gilbert admitted that his tilted posture is caused by a heavy electric guitar (I promise to link to the interview once I find it). Here is how a typical beginner positions the fretting hand when playing barre chords: You can clearly see the angle between the wrist and the arm. I think I m going to take a break from guitar … slouching while playing guitar and that doing that for prolonged periods of time impacts our posture. The pain should be an ache, not shooting. The repetitive motion of playing the guitar tightens certain muscle groups. And a low-grade inflammatory process always accompanies scar tissue formation, causing even more trouble…. It’s a negative spiral, exacerbated by further guitar practice. What you should do instead: warm up with movement, doing wrist circles while making a fist and then with straightened fingers, or basically any form of movement that moves the fingers, wrist, elbow and even the shoulder through their full range of motion. Sore finger joints and carpal tunnel by: Suffering I have been suffering with the above problems for over three months, prior I had flare ups. I think so too – the problem seems to be the times when you are shaping your fretting hand in a certain way – either moving up and down the scale or shifting chord/scale positions. Wrist flexing exercises with a dumbbell. You are not alone. “A guitarist should seek medical attention if the pain is sharp, unrelenting, or gets worse instead of better," says Hawkins.

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