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Old 01-13-2013, 11:02 AM   #1
ruffryder
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how to tell the difference in pain

hi im trying to learn guitar have been for a few years but as my fingers are completly useless i have always give up iv been trying to practice for few months strait now and im self teaching because i cannot afford a teacher i can bearly play a note i have to really strain my fingers to make it clear when i try to relax i just keep hitting dead notes but im not sure the difference between pain that i need to go through to get better and pain that will damage me my left arm aches alot through holding it up to play i have very little muscle in my arms and fingers can anyone help
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Old 01-13-2013, 11:41 AM   #2
TheNameOfNoone
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IMO you have to develop finger strength.
I played some folk instruments back in 2011 and I my finger were hurting like hell.
But now I can shred any hardest acoustics with relaxed fingers.

Just keep practicing, and pain will eventually stop after few weeks of constant practice. (constant=more than 4 hours per day)
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Old 01-13-2013, 12:29 PM   #3
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If the pain from practicing stays for more than an hour to an hour and a half, take off the next day; There's probably something wrong technique-wise causing it. There are a ton of videos on Youtube that promote proper positioning and exercises to avoid strain and injury.
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Old 01-13-2013, 01:17 PM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by TheNameOfNoone
Just keep practicing, and pain will eventually stop after few weeks of constant practice. (constant=more than 4 hours per day)

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Old 01-13-2013, 01:34 PM   #5
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Acoustic or Electric? Either way, try these, they're pretty cheap, especially through music123.

Nashville Tuning

Nashville Tuning Acoustic

Think you just need some really light gauge strings, these are a breeze to play, kind of a different sound, too.
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Old 01-13-2013, 01:56 PM   #6
thes50
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Get some thin strings, don't know whether you play acoustic or electric but if it's an electric I recommend Ernie Ball Super Slinkies, make sure the guitar is set up correctly, for example if the guitars action is set up wrong it makes it more difficult to play.

Make sure you're fretting hand is positioned correctly, if it isn't positioned right then it could make it harder to play. If your arm is aching from having to hold it up then you need to start getting more muscle just in general.

As mentioned by everyone else you just need to keep pushing on, if your fingers/hand/arm is aching for more than an hour after you've been playing then don't play for the rest of that day. It'll get easier the more you practice.
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Old 01-13-2013, 02:07 PM   #7
ruffryder
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im playing accoustic i have very light gage strings on it iv tried looking at streatching technecs but unable to keep my other fingers down and move my first finger over a fret
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Old 01-13-2013, 03:35 PM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ruffryder
im playing accoustic i have very light gage strings on it iv tried looking at streatching technecs but unable to keep my other fingers down and move my first finger over a fret


I think what you're saying there is that you don't have the finger independence to only move one finger at a time - that comes with practice, lots of practice.



At first it's something you actively have to think about, you have to make sure your fingers stay down. Once you've been doing this regularly a few weeks/months you will be able to do it without thinking.

Last edited by thes50 : 01-13-2013 at 03:52 PM.
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Old 01-13-2013, 03:51 PM   #9
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There is something to be said for finger independence; absolutely. I'm also wondering if you simply haven't developed strong calluses (just a little unclear on exactly where the pain is hitting you).

If you have developed thick calluses, definitely look at your position; strive for a position that feels natural and allows you to relax your arm from your fingertips to you shoulder. This goes hand and hand with stretching.

You could also try lowering your string action, playing through your songs and lessons at a pressure that's comfortable (even if that's muted) until you've built up strength.

Please let us know if you have any more information; alot of seasoned veterans here who know the pain of playing
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Old 01-13-2013, 05:01 PM   #10
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Learn piano.
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Old 01-13-2013, 05:31 PM   #11
ruffryder
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thanks alot for the help guys i have already been practicing what was said in the video the last week and am sticking with it i also know i little irish jig song which i practice using just my ring and pinky to try and get them used to playing its mainly the chords i find it hard getting a position where none of my fingers are touching strings they shouldnt. i have been building up my calluses but the pain is mainly from my elbow to my hand it just aches and am not sure wether to try and ride it out or stop because it will cause damage
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Old 01-13-2013, 05:57 PM   #12
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It doesn't matter whether your fingers touch the strings, in fact done correctly it can be useful as it can be used to mute the strings. I noticed one thing in your original post which makes me curious:

Quote:
Originally Posted by ruffryder
my left arm aches alot through holding it up to play


Do you have a strap? It sounds like you don't. If you don't - get one. If you do have one and your arm aches just holding it up get some weights because that is really unhealthy.
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Old 01-14-2013, 02:49 PM   #13
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Yep, sounds like position; I would definitely NOT recommend playing through the pain. Expect to play through fatigue, but not pain. You don't want to set yourself further back. Focus on finding a comfortable position; keep at it until you find one. A strap, yes; playing in strict classical position to start, yes.
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Old 01-15-2013, 08:09 AM   #14
ruffryder
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i have a strap but cant seem to find the little nut on the neck of the guitar where the other end of the strap hooks on like an electric
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Old 01-15-2013, 11:53 AM   #15
ruffryder
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iv figured that one out i tied a lace at the top of the guitar im feeling aching in my hands and knuckles when im doing excercises kind of like a cramp in my fingers and knuckles is this normal and i have soft flabby like bits on my hands anf fingers and cannot find a comfortable position to play a chord with out at least on string hitting a dud
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Old 01-16-2013, 03:38 PM   #16
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ruffryder
iv figured that one out i tied a lace at the top of the guitar im feeling aching in my hands and knuckles when im doing excercises kind of like a cramp in my fingers and knuckles is this normal and i have soft flabby like bits on my hands anf fingers and cannot find a comfortable position to play a chord with out at least on string hitting a dud


It still sounds like position, my recommendation is to save up some money and have a guitar lesson or two, just for long enough for him to correct your positioning and posture. I know you can't afford it now, but a month from now you might be able to.
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Old 01-16-2013, 06:33 PM   #17
ruffryder
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thanks thes50 i have looked at videos of correct positions and when i try my fingers dont seem to bend like its shown maybe its a case of alot of excercise building my strength and streach
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Old 01-17-2013, 07:56 PM   #18
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ruffryder
thanks thes50 i have looked at videos of correct positions and when i try my fingers dont seem to bend like its shown maybe its a case of alot of excercise building my strength and streach


You're welcome, try soaking your hands & arms in warm water before and after practicing. It could help to relieve any tension you have in your muscles. Do thorough warm-ups before playing and never start playing with cold hands. After that just keep at it!
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Old 01-18-2013, 11:11 AM   #19
ruffryder
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iv just bought myself a new electric guitar and the difference is massive i can play it alot easier iv orderd the new rocksmith game too hope that will help with my practice
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Old 01-18-2013, 01:11 PM   #20
AnthonyatSNB
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Glad to hear it! Keep at it
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