#1
Recently, I've been practicing "shred" licks [well, some fast Paul Gilbert licks at least].

Anyway, I keep remembering how "loose" PG's right hand looks when he plays, such as his alternate picking. I assume this means his hand is 'tightly' locked in with what he plays.
I can play like this absolutely fine [well, I assume so ].
The thing is, everyone mentions reduced tension in the hand. I recently noticed that when I play anything too fast, I get a little bit of tension in my right hand [the wrist area IIRC]. This may well just be normal, and I can happily live with it, it feels perfectly fine and natural.

This thing is, I think I may be getting paranoid, as I've also noticed my little 'pinky' finger is curled up, and after a while of playing any fast licks [or even practicing sweep picking by playing at a really slow speed], my little finger starts to feel a little, well, I don't know how to put this, "cramped".
It's not the biggest deal in the world, but I don't want to discover that I might be doing any damage to myself.

So, to be 100% safe, I'm asking if my little finger should be curled around somewhat.
All of my fingers make the same shape as my index finger, so I'm hoping the cramped feeling is just me being fatigued.

Thanks for any help/advice!
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#2
Sounds like you are instinctively tensing your muscles. Try taking a lesson from boxing and playing as loose and comfortable as you can be, and seeing if that makes a difference.
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#3
Quote by troyponce
Sounds like you are instinctively tensing your muscles. Try taking a lesson from boxing and playing as loose and comfortable as you can be, and seeing if that makes a difference.


I can relax my muscles when playing a small lick that only covers the two high strings, from 17-22 frets.

But if a play a fast lick over all six strings, or the fast repeating section at the end of the solo in "One shot at glory", then it's difficult to relax.

But, thanks for highlighting it - I have something else to work on to improve my playing.
Sunn O))):
Quote by Doppelgänger
You could always just sleep beside your refrigerator.

Guitar:
- Ibanez S670FM w/ JB
- Fender 'Lite Ash' Stratocaster
- Fender '72 Deluxe Telecaster
- Arbiter LP Jr. Doublecut
Amp:
- Laney VC15

'72 Tele Appreciation Group
RIP DIO
#4
i dont know a lot about injuries
but i do know that your playing sounds at least twice as smooth and sweet when your hands (yes both, but especially the picking hand) are completely relaxed
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1988 PRS custom 24
1960 Moon oct. mandolin
#5
Quote by Funkicker
i dont know a lot about injuries
but i do know that your playing sounds at least twice as smooth and sweet when your hands (yes both, but especially the picking hand) are completely relaxed


Thanks.

Also, I've been watching some videos, and I've seen that I've playing perfectly fine!
Just need to be more relaxed.

So, thanks everyone!
Sunn O))):
Quote by Doppelgänger
You could always just sleep beside your refrigerator.

Guitar:
- Ibanez S670FM w/ JB
- Fender 'Lite Ash' Stratocaster
- Fender '72 Deluxe Telecaster
- Arbiter LP Jr. Doublecut
Amp:
- Laney VC15

'72 Tele Appreciation Group
RIP DIO
#6
Quote by Simsimius
I recently noticed that when I play anything too fast, I get a little bit of tension in my right hand [the wrist area IIRC].


Bad. Bad Bad Bad Bad. That is exactly where you should be the most relaxed when playing at speed.

I would also say that you should try and relax your pinky as well, especially if it's getting cramped as you play for longer.
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#7
i still don't get it though, playing with relaxed hands is so much easier, then why the tension?
1953 Epiphone zephyr
1988 PRS custom 24
1960 Moon oct. mandolin
#8
Quote by Zaphod_Beeblebr
Bad. Bad Bad Bad Bad. That is exactly where you should be the most relaxed when playing at speed.

I would also say that you should try and relax your pinky as well, especially if it's getting cramped as you play for longer.


Any good ways to relax?
Should I slow it down again, and keep it slow?
Sunn O))):
Quote by Doppelgänger
You could always just sleep beside your refrigerator.

Guitar:
- Ibanez S670FM w/ JB
- Fender 'Lite Ash' Stratocaster
- Fender '72 Deluxe Telecaster
- Arbiter LP Jr. Doublecut
Amp:
- Laney VC15

'72 Tele Appreciation Group
RIP DIO
#9
Quote by Simsimius
Any good ways to relax?
Should I slow it down again, and keep it slow?


Basically yes; don't speed up until you can do it without tensing up.
R.I.P. My Signature. Lost to us in the great Signature Massacre of 2014.

Quote by Master Foo
“A man who mistakes secrets for knowledge is like a man who, seeking light, hugs a candle so closely that he smothers it and burns his hand.”


Album.
Legion.
#11
Find a speed you can play comfortably, then half that. Play it add this speed with absolutely no tension and move up the BPMs slowly.
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#12
Quote by Funkicker
i still don't get it though, playing with relaxed hands is so much easier, then why the tension?

Because we like playing fast sh*t that's beyond our technical limits and so we come here at AT to figure out how to play fast without concern for the music.
If you play guitar, please don't waste your time in The Pit, and please instead educate yourself in the Musician Talk forum, where you can be missing out on valuable info.
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