#1
Hey guys,
So today while practicing, I noticed that since my hand is a little too short, when I do the stretch from fret 1 to fret 4 (Like, when I do 1,2,3,4, on E, 1,2,3,4 on A, etc. Then back) My index finger frets the 1st fret in between the tip of my finger and the side of my finger. Is this a bad habit or is it OK?

PS: I already know I don't have perfect left hand technique (I fret in between the tip and the pad of my fingers. Is this such a bad habit too?


Thanks!
"You have brains in your head,
You have feet in your shoes,
You can steer yourself,
any direction you choose,
You're on your own,
And you know what you know,
And YOU are the one who'll decide where to go."

- Dr. Seuss
#2
First question--where's your thumb on your fretting hand during this? Because if its behind the neck as a pivot you should have no problems making a 1 -4 fret stretch.

Also--if you have smaller hands, make spider scales / exercises as part of you regular practice. You will see noticeable improvement on your stretch and your fretting technique.
#3
Or, if the problem persists even after practice, perhaps you could try a short-scale bass.
#4
Quote by anarkee
First question--where's your thumb on your fretting hand during this? Because if its behind the neck as a pivot you should have no problems making a 1 -4 fret stretch.

Also--if you have smaller hands, make spider scales / exercises as part of you regular practice. You will see noticeable improvement on your stretch and your fretting technique.

Yeah, it's behind the neck. I'd probably be able after practicing, but I was just wondering if it's OK to fret it in between the tip and the side of the finger. If it's not I'll change that, but if it is I'll learn to change it
"You have brains in your head,
You have feet in your shoes,
You can steer yourself,
any direction you choose,
You're on your own,
And you know what you know,
And YOU are the one who'll decide where to go."

- Dr. Seuss
#5
I'd try not to get in that habit, its a bit awkward and can impede your speed later on.

There is no good reason, unless you have really small hands (like a 7 year old) that you can't play a full sized bass. The issue is that we all want to play faster but it takes time and effort, and using bad habits or shortcuts is going to come back to haunt you in unfortunate ways later on. Slow down and do it right and then build speed from there.
#6
Quote by anarkee
I'd try not to get in that habit, its a bit awkward and can impede your speed later on.

There is no good reason, unless you have really small hands (like a 7 year old) that you can't play a full sized bass. The issue is that we all want to play faster but it takes time and effort, and using bad habits or shortcuts is going to come back to haunt you in unfortunate ways later on. Slow down and do it right and then build speed from there.


Don't worry, I never wanted to get a short scale bass haha, so, what you're saying is that I should always play with the tips of my fingers?

(PS: I'm glad I found out about this bad habit now, it'll be easier to fix, since I only started playing bass haha)
"You have brains in your head,
You have feet in your shoes,
You can steer yourself,
any direction you choose,
You're on your own,
And you know what you know,
And YOU are the one who'll decide where to go."

- Dr. Seuss
#7
The only time I ever do that is when I'm doing a five or six fret stretch, but when it's only a four fret stretch there's no need, unless you have the hands, as Tams said, of a seven year old. The only fix is to practise, focusing on keeping that tip down squarely on the string, slowly at first and you should be able to do it.
#8
Hey guys, I found out why I was playing with the pads and not the tips of my fingers. My thumb was too high up the back of the neck. So I put it on the bottom half of behind the neck, and now I almost always play with the tips.

Only thing is that I still play with the middle/side of my index. Anyone know exactly how I could fix it, like a trick or something that I can practice?

PS: if you don't know what I mean by side, I mean, kinds like how you play a power chord (you know how you put your index so you mute all the other strings) , but a bit less worse. That's still bad right?

Also, another thing, do all my fingers have to be perfectly straight, or can they curve a bit on the neck (cuz my wrist/hand curve a little when I play)

Oh, and thanks for all the help you guys, seriously, I'm making amazing (to my standards) progress. I mean, a week ago I could barely play Another One bites the Dust, and today I can play Billie Jean (which for you guys is probably nothing haha), so thanks again
"You have brains in your head,
You have feet in your shoes,
You can steer yourself,
any direction you choose,
You're on your own,
And you know what you know,
And YOU are the one who'll decide where to go."

- Dr. Seuss
#9
your fingers should curve... usually when guys have fairly strait fingers its cause their hands are huge (check out tom gilbert on guitar to see the point illustrated). youll find your fingers need to bend to play the higher strings especially
#10
Quote by krehzeekid
your fingers should curve... usually when guys have fairly strait fingers its cause their hands are huge (check out tom gilbert on guitar to see the point illustrated). youll find your fingers need to bend to play the higher strings especially

Ummm...do you mean higher
FRETS?
"You have brains in your head,
You have feet in your shoes,
You can steer yourself,
any direction you choose,
You're on your own,
And you know what you know,
And YOU are the one who'll decide where to go."

- Dr. Seuss
#11
Quote by Rancid Ivy
Ummm...do you mean higher
FRETS?


no, i mean higher strings (such as the d and g), though higher frets render this true as well
#12
Okay, so then it's normal that my index finger kinda "curves" tomute the other strings below the one I'm playing, just I have to practice so I play with the tip of every finger, including the index? (just the index can curve a little)?

Oh shit, sorry about that confusing post -_-
"You have brains in your head,
You have feet in your shoes,
You can steer yourself,
any direction you choose,
You're on your own,
And you know what you know,
And YOU are the one who'll decide where to go."

- Dr. Seuss
#13
Whoa, whoa, curves to mute the string? No that's not fine. If you mean your knuckle is buckling in order to mute that's no good. All of your knuckles ideally, should at all times be curved or bent. That isn't always possible, but the more the better.

I might be misunderestimating (still funny to me) what you're saying, so maybe try and be just a little bit more clear, or a picture would be nice.
#14
Quote by jazz_rock_feel
Whoa, whoa, curves to mute the string? No that's not fine. If you mean your knuckle is buckling in order to mute that's no good. All of your knuckles ideally, should at all times be curved or bent. That isn't always possible, but the more the better.

I might be misunderestimating (still funny to me) what you're saying, so maybe try and be just a little bit more clear, or a picture would be nice.

Sorry for being bad at explaining, but I don't know how else to explain it, and I can't take a picture.
Can anyone put a picture on correct left hand technique viewed from every angle (behind the neck, in front on the neck, any angle where I could see where the thumb, and then another picture to see exactly how you place your fingers on the frets.

In short, I need to know the exact left hand technique, and I'll use that to help me.

I think that'd be less complicated if you could, but if you can't I guess you can just tell me if you wouldn't mind...
"You have brains in your head,
You have feet in your shoes,
You can steer yourself,
any direction you choose,
You're on your own,
And you know what you know,
And YOU are the one who'll decide where to go."

- Dr. Seuss
#15
I could take a picture... but then I'd actually have to get up In all seriousness though left hand position isn't really that complex. The thumb should be planted directly in the middle of the fretboard and used as a pivot to shift your hand while playing in a position. All of the fingers should arch over the neck and all the knuckles should be bent somewhat. Your palm should never touch or rub against the bottom of the neck, in fact, only your thumb and fingers that are playing should ever really be in contact with the neck in the course of basic playing. You should play with you fingertips squarely placed directly behind the fret.

That's the basics of left hand playing. Some of the rules can be tweaked or broken, depending on the situation, but for your average day to day playing they basically make up left hand technique.
#16
Okay thanks, I'll consider all those things during my next practice session, which is probably gunna be tonight since I'm not home right now, and I'll post back if any problems persist
"You have brains in your head,
You have feet in your shoes,
You can steer yourself,
any direction you choose,
You're on your own,
And you know what you know,
And YOU are the one who'll decide where to go."

- Dr. Seuss
#17
Quote by krehzeekid
your fingers should curve... usually when guys have fairly strait fingers its cause their hands are huge (check out tom gilbert on guitar to see the point illustrated). youll find your fingers need to bend to play the higher strings especially



who is TOM gilbert? did you mean PAUL?
#18
Okay, so I had a practice session, and here's what I got. I put my thumb lower down the neck (a bit lower then the middle), and the problem is almost fixed. I'll post pics once I get in the computer, so you guys can understand more clearly...
"You have brains in your head,
You have feet in your shoes,
You can steer yourself,
any direction you choose,
You're on your own,
And you know what you know,
And YOU are the one who'll decide where to go."

- Dr. Seuss
#19
Bump, Plus I got pics. Can anyone kinda "evaluate" my technique?

(Sorry for the poor quality, and the teddy bears on the beds, my cousin's room is awesome ain't it?)














I took as many as I could, I hope it's enough
"You have brains in your head,
You have feet in your shoes,
You can steer yourself,
any direction you choose,
You're on your own,
And you know what you know,
And YOU are the one who'll decide where to go."

- Dr. Seuss
#20
The first picture looks 100% perfect. The thumb is nice and perpendicular, all the fingers are ready to be placed square on the string. Some of them are worse than others, but a few (one and four especially) are really nice. Just try and keep your fingers closer to the string when they're not in use. It's a really tough habit to break, especially when your fingers are moving a lot because it's so natural for your fingers to move together, and it's one of my biggest weaknesses in terms of technique. Other than that it looks pretty darn good.
#21
Oh and btw, picture 4 shows EXACTLY how my finger kindsabends, but since you said it was pretty good, that means it's probably
Not TOO bad haha :P

Thanks, so I guess I have good technique then :P
"You have brains in your head,
You have feet in your shoes,
You can steer yourself,
any direction you choose,
You're on your own,
And you know what you know,
And YOU are the one who'll decide where to go."

- Dr. Seuss
#22
I can't lie, looking back I actually miscounted and meant 1 and 5. However, 4 doesn't actually appear to be that bad. That "bending" is caused by what I was talking about earlier and keeping your fingers closer to the board at all times will help with that.

One more thing though and I'm not sure if the pictures are necessarily the best to go by, but it appears that your fingers are creeping back a little bit from the fret. Try and keep them right up against the fret you're playing.
#23
Nah their right behind the neck, it's just cuz I took the pics in an awkward position, their usually at the right place.

I'm gunna work on my fingers closer to the neck for now then
"You have brains in your head,
You have feet in your shoes,
You can steer yourself,
any direction you choose,
You're on your own,
And you know what you know,
And YOU are the one who'll decide where to go."

- Dr. Seuss