#1
Hey guys, so, I'm not sure if this is the correct forum, but I've been playing guitar for about 2.5 years now and I've noticed that my wrists still ache for a while after playing for extended periods of times, especially when I barre, but I was wondering if you guys have any exercises you do to build up finger/wrist strength to prevent such aching?

The only other problem with this is that my family has a history of arthritis and that my father has passed on to me(and my sister) a gene in which our hands shake uncontrollably a bit, which also gets in the way a bit and I was ALSO wondering if anybody suffered anything similar and if they did anything to work on it?

Most obliged.
Quote by Teh Forest King
A kid took a fetal pig during pig dissection, put a napkin on it as a cape, wrote "super pig" on it, then threw it out the window onto the greenhouse below, yelling "super pig, blast off!". He failed the pig lab
#3
Quote by Fallen Kwala
u cood jerk it more
What do you mean "more?"
Quote by Teh Forest King
A kid took a fetal pig during pig dissection, put a napkin on it as a cape, wrote "super pig" on it, then threw it out the window onto the greenhouse below, yelling "super pig, blast off!". He failed the pig lab
#4
Go to youtube, search rock discipline by john petrucci and do those exercises, nice stretches/ warmups for left/right hand. Also look up the finger gym by justinguitar, its a good way to strenghten up your fingers and enhance your legato playing
#5
I had this same problem, and I've done all the excercuses I could. My wrist still hurt.
And then I started taking weight training in high school. I started to notice my wrist and arm didn't hurt as much. Maybe you should start lifting weights, doing tricep and bicep lifts?
#7
Quote by TatarSalad2
I had this same problem, and I've done all the excercuses I could. My wrist still hurt.
And then I started taking weight training in high school. I started to notice my wrist and arm didn't hurt as much. Maybe you should start lifting weights, doing tricep and bicep lifts?
I'm in my last year of high school, but I guess I could get myself a weight and work on a that a little.

Also, thanks to for the YouTube suggestion, it seems like it might work a bit.
Quote by Teh Forest King
A kid took a fetal pig during pig dissection, put a napkin on it as a cape, wrote "super pig" on it, then threw it out the window onto the greenhouse below, yelling "super pig, blast off!". He failed the pig lab
#8
Quote by Just Andrew
I'm in my last year of high school, but I guess I could get myself a weight and work on a that a little.

Also, thanks to for the YouTube suggestion, it seems like it might work a bit.


Seems out of place in a guitar forum but...

Some lifts to help strengthen your arms would be hammercurls, and skull crushers(french curls). Look those up. That's what I've been doing and it's help a lot with my arm strength. I can play longer and faster. If you look at some pretty fast guitar players, you'll see their arms are huge. John Petrucci, Synyster Gates, Zakk Wylde, etc.
#9
Quote by TatarSalad2
Seems out of place in a guitar forum but...

Some lifts to help strengthen your arms would be hammercurls, and skull crushers(french curls). Look those up. That's what I've been doing and it's help a lot with my arm strength. I can play longer and faster. If you look at some pretty fast guitar players, you'll see their arms are huge. John Petrucci, Synyster Gates, Zakk Wylde, etc.


all of which have terrible right hand technique.

TS, you are probably pressing down too hard on the fretboard.
as for the picking hand, pick from the wrist, not the elbow.
read all the sticky information in the main technique directory to find all the information you need.
#10
i always wondered the same thing, i asked an experienced guitar friend of mine and he said that doing scales and simple excercises not only help ur speed in playing, but increase ur hand's strength and stamina. i do this all the time and it seems to have helped me:

put all four fingers on the big e string along the any four consecutive frets and, starting from ur index finger, move down a string, finger by finger. the thing is u only move that one finger all the rest stay where u put them. kinda hard to explian, but i hope it helps. it helps ur fingers gain individual strength and definitely gives a workout to ur hand.
#11
stop playing if they get sore
the last thing you need in your life is an injured wrist
it helps if you change your posture a bit
try lifting the neck up a bit more
or try shortening your guitar strap
this is the simplest way i know
the hard way is to relax as much as you can while playing
using less excess strength will really loosen your muscles up
and you will play smoother and faster when relaxed
the mind controls your body, not your muscles
if you understand this then it'll definitely feel more comfortable playing
oh ya, never over stress it
your muscles will get stronger
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#12
just do simple 1-3-2-4 finger excersizes up and down the strings. I do that to warm up, it really does help if you just do that ascending and descending.
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#14
My friend has this crazy gyroscope ball thing. I can't even really explain what it is, but you use your wrist/hand to build up speed and the gyroscope spins faster and faster and exerts more and more force trying to get away from you. After playing with it for about five minutes my fingers felt like butter when I tried to play.
#16
First of all be careful. If you are getting cramps while practicing, stop immediately. Rub your wrist starting at the elbow and rub downward toward the wrist. Gently shake your wrist then resume practicing. Do this EVERY TIME your wrist starts to feel cramped or strained. This is serious business. NEVER play thru a cramp!

You may want to re-evaluate your hand position when playing barres. I have this problem with barres at the lower frets (near the nut). I do everything that I can to not play full barre chords in this position.

If this happens more when you're playing standing up try raising the strap, yeah it doesn't look as "cool", but it's worth it to avoid tendonitis.

Look at your string gauge and the over all action. Heavy strings and high action can also be a factor

Try thinking about the strength or "energy" as coming from the bicep as opposed to the forearm or wrist. The bicep is much stronger that those other two muscle areas. This has helped me as well.

If you are inclined to start a weight training program make sure that you do wrist curls, both underhand and over hand. This will help to strengthen the forearm and reduce the chance of strain or other injury.

Hand size is also factor. I taught lessons for many years and all my students with small hands had more issues with cramping than those with large hands and long fingers. (As you may have guessed I have relatively small hands.) They eventually found ways to overcome or get around the cramping and discomfort, just like you will. Playing scales, and other hand and finger exercises definitely helped as well.

Keep practicing but remember, DON'T PLAY THRU A CRAMP. Follow the above tips and in time you should be able to play barres with less discomfort.
#17
Quote by Lou Lombardi
First of all be careful. If you are getting cramps while practicing, stop immediately. Rub your wrist starting at the elbow and rub downward toward the wrist. Gently shake your wrist then resume practicing. Do this EVERY TIME your wrist starts to feel cramped or strained. This is serious business. NEVER play thru a cramp!

You may want to re-evaluate your hand position when playing barres. I have this problem with barres at the lower frets (near the nut). I do everything that I can to not play full barre chords in this position.

If this happens more when you're playing standing up try raising the strap, yeah it doesn't look as "cool", but it's worth it to avoid tendonitis.

Look at your string gauge and the over all action. Heavy strings and high action can also be a factor

Try thinking about the strength or "energy" as coming from the bicep as opposed to the forearm or wrist. The bicep is much stronger that those other two muscle areas. This has helped me as well.

If you are inclined to start a weight training program make sure that you do wrist curls, both underhand and over hand. This will help to strengthen the forearm and reduce the chance of strain or other injury.

Hand size is also factor. I taught lessons for many years and all my students with small hands had more issues with cramping than those with large hands and long fingers. (As you may have guessed I have relatively small hands.) They eventually found ways to overcome or get around the cramping and discomfort, just like you will. Playing scales, and other hand and finger exercises definitely helped as well.

Keep practicing but remember, DON'T PLAY THRU A CRAMP. Follow the above tips and in time you should be able to play barres with less discomfort.
Thanks for the advice, chap.

Ha, but I've already developed a bit of a comfort while playing. I generally play acoustic and I like to have my guitar up high to my neck(ALA early John Lennon) for comfort purposes. I also have been told that I have very long fingers, which I think has actually hindered my playing capabilities more so than if I had shorter fingers.

But thanks for advice, again.
Quote by Teh Forest King
A kid took a fetal pig during pig dissection, put a napkin on it as a cape, wrote "super pig" on it, then threw it out the window onto the greenhouse below, yelling "super pig, blast off!". He failed the pig lab