#1
Hello all,

I've been 'playing' guitar very, very sporadically for the last year or so, and just bought a basic Ibanez & amp.

I find it hard to get motivated into playing because of my overall posture, way I hold the guitar etc. I've seen a billion instructional videos and been told the same thing a million times over - 'do whatever feels comfortable' - but to avail, my hand still seems to cramp up a lot.

I try holding my picking hand in between the pickups and generally get that downpat, although I find it naturally starts creeping towards the lower end of the neck while I'm playing, no matter what I do.

Thumb position is probably the most annoying for me - no matter what position I try to hold my thumb, e.g. parallel with the neck, at 90 degree, in roughly the same angle as the frets, diagonally, etc., I just seem to get cramps in my fretting hand and frustration overall.

I've been to a shiteload of instructional sites, watched videos etc but as yet haven't found anything that visually demonstrates a good way of holding your thumb against the neck. Anyone know any decent sites/ YouTube videos that I've probably skipped over, or any tips? It's an issue that pisses me off enough to associate practice with frustration and I'm pretty demotivated.

Thanks for your help/suggestions.
#2
If your hand is cramping up, you're using too much tension. Just loosen up a bit.
You shouldn't really pay attention to your thumb position, because it does come naturally.

It sounds to me like you're thinking too much about the stuff that doesn't really matter.
Just relax, and by that I mean relax your hands. Stretch before you play. There is something you must be doing wrong, but I doubt very much that it's your thumb position.

Maybe record a vid of yourself playing so we can see or something?
#5
I've been 'playing' guitar very, very sporadically for the last year or so... my hand still seems to cramp up a lot.


Causal link perhaps?

Anyway, the main thing is to keep the left wrist fairly straight, that allow the tendons that move the fingers to work most easily and causes your wrist less bother. Check to see if your wrist is fairly straight and try reading the main sticky and watching the posture video in it.
#6
Austriaal_

Hopefully I wont get in trouble for this. Im kinda new and got the business yesterday for posting links to my videos and I'm not really quite clear on why. But I have free lessons on youtube at www.youtube.com/shredguitaracademy that are exactly what you are asking for right now. Let me know if this helps.
#7
Thanks guys.

Caligulus, that video was exactly what I'd been looking for, thanks heaps! It's now just a matter of sitting there and running through some exercises with those positions. Just gotta undo some bad habits that have crept up on me.
#8
For hand cramps I suggest buying one of those hand strengthening things that you can pretty much buy anywhere that exersice equipment is sold. this will help for cramps in your fretting hand... plus you can do the exercise almost anywhere, stopped at a light, while watching a movie, (if it's permited) at work, while wandering the mall, even while your reading....