HeretiK538
Petrol
Join date: Aug 2010
869 IQ
#1
I've been doing my absolute best to minimise the tension in my picking hand, at the minute, and I'll be damned if there's any left. But when playing The Count Of Tuscany by Dream Theater, my lower arm seems to be getting very tired.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=E4yzYKIiV9Y

I can make it through 3:55 - 5:30 fairly cleanly at full speed, but my arm is practically dead by the end, and I tend to slop through the prechorus, til the blissfully relaxed chorus, where my arm recover.

Could there be something up with my technique, or is it likely I just need to improve the muscles in my arm? The only thing moving is my wrist, and I'm very consciously dropping my shoulders - no sharp pains at all, and just the exhausted sensation in my lower arm.
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Withorwithout
Registered User
Join date: May 2012
188 IQ
#2
Get rid of any tensions that is occuring anywhere. If you cant play without tensing your arm ar etc, than your technique isnt elevated to the level and will finally tire you. Try to practice the part that makes you tired very slowly for a while, until you find it easier to play.
HeretiK538
Petrol
Join date: Aug 2010
869 IQ
#3
Quote by Withorwithout
Get rid of any tensions that is occuring anywhere. If you cant play without tensing your arm ar etc, than your technique isnt elevated to the level and will finally tire you. Try to practice the part that makes you tired very slowly for a while, until you find it easier to play.


I'm pretty sure there is no tension, but my arm is wearing out. My question is, do I just need to 'bulk up'? Is that ever the case? I took a fairly long break from guitar and haven't done as much practice as I should have (drums kekekekekekekekeke)
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My Last Words
Billions and billions!
Join date: Jul 2012
2,209 IQ
#4
Practice the riff at a speed where you don't feel worn out at the end, and try to avoid all forms of tension at all times..
baab
CelestialGuitar
Celestial Wish Guitarist
Join date: Nov 2011
518 IQ
#5
Quote by HeretiK538
I'm pretty sure there is no tension, but my arm is wearing out. My question is, do I just need to 'bulk up'? Is that ever the case? I took a fairly long break from guitar and haven't done as much practice as I should have (drums kekekekekekekekeke)


I definitely don't think you need to 'bulk up', as you say. By your lower arm, I assume you mean your forearm, in which case, you may be making larger movements than you need to with your picking hand. If you feel the muscles on your forearm and make picking movements, you shouldn't feel them working too much. I've noticed that I can really feel them working when I do wide movements, when I do small movements, it's barely noticeable, so I won't get tired easily. When playing rhythm parts, a lot of guitarists tend to feel the movement by either tapping their foot, nodding their head, or doing a slightly exaggerated movement with their picking hand to mark rests, or the beat, if the riff is offbeat. You want to generally stop all of these things, and make it so you're just doing a short, precise movement. I think something's happening that you're not aware of, I'll be willing to bet you're either making your movements too large, or you're feeling the beat with your arm, instead of locking in with your brain.
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HeretiK538
Petrol
Join date: Aug 2010
869 IQ
#6
I had a chat with a friend about it. I don't think tension is the problem, but he definitely echoed your thoughts, CelestialGuitar, that I'm making too big a movement, or at least, that I could minimise the amount of movement.

He, and another friend, also noted that I leave my fingers out when picking, in a kind of 'okay' sign. No tension or anything, but he reckoned that's extra weight I'm throwing around. The friend is a superb picker, and he reckoned I should curl my fingers into my hand more. Is there anything to say that can affect it? I shall try to minimise my movements in the mean time, thanks
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CelestialGuitar
Celestial Wish Guitarist
Join date: Nov 2011
518 IQ
#7
Quote by HeretiK538
I had a chat with a friend about it. I don't think tension is the problem, but he definitely echoed your thoughts, CelestialGuitar, that I'm making too big a movement, or at least, that I could minimise the amount of movement.

He, and another friend, also noted that I leave my fingers out when picking, in a kind of 'okay' sign. No tension or anything, but he reckoned that's extra weight I'm throwing around. The friend is a superb picker, and he reckoned I should curl my fingers into my hand more. Is there anything to say that can affect it? I shall try to minimise my movements in the mean time, thanks


Yeah, minimising movement is always the first place to go when fatigue strikes, or if you can't do something fast enough. As for okay sign part, I disagree, I'm guessing your fingers are already curled slightly, and your friend is asking you to bundle up your fingers, I think that's opposite of what you want to do. I used to pick with two fingers on the pick, the nature of that style is that all your fingers are bundled together, for me, that caused severe discomfort, now my picking technique is correct, my other fingers are free from each other, and it feels so much better, like they're not even there. I understand your friend may be a superb picker, so is John Petrucci, but I'd never in my life recommend curling them up as he does, and anchoring, as he sometimes tends to.

1:04 in this video is basically how I hold my pick, and how I'd probably recommend holding it to others, as you can see, his fingers are fairly free.

http://youtu.be/VRgjCi8OUR4?t=1m4s
Gear

Mesa Dual Rectifier
TC Electronic Polytune
T Rex MAB Overdrive
Boss NS-2
ESP Horizon NT See Thru Black (D Standard)

Celestial Wish on Youtube