#1
I've been doing exercises to help build up speed and accuracy in my left hand. I'm trying to keep all four fingers just above the strings but my pinky won't stay down. It's worse in the lower frets where I have to stretch more. Any suggestions?
#2
relax your hand and check your thumb position.
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#3
i have the same problem but you have 2 manipulate the tendon because its attached to the pinky and ring i think...
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#5
Try doing some trills(rapid hammer on and pull off) with your little finger it seems to help with finger strength and seems to help with positioning and controlability of your fingers.
At least it has done for me .
#6
Quote by Krash13
I've been doing exercises to help build up speed and accuracy in my left hand. I'm trying to keep all four fingers just above the strings but my pinky won't stay down. It's worse in the lower frets where I have to stretch more. Any suggestions?

It doesn't matter what it looks like, only what you can do with it - if you can hit the notes you want accurately then your pinky is doing exactly what it needs to do, regardless of how it looks.
Actually called Mark!

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#7
There's a really simple solution to this: slow down. If you go slow enough you can control your pinky and you can build it up from there. Bear in mind, you shouldn't be controlling it by tensing it up, but rather, by focusing on keeping it relaxed.
Speed is a by-product of shut the fuck up.
#8
This is solved through much repitition. Try an easy scale in the middle of the fretboard rather than at the top or bottom. Try also the C-Major scale that involves at least three strings on most frets, to practice the pinky in cordination with different fingers moving, depending on which string. That should build some flexibility.

Lastly, slowly and without mistakes, practice the chromatic scale up and down the fretboard which involves all four fingers on each string, up and down. That doesn't sound the greatest but builds finger dexterity and memory. Also, make sure you are using the tips of your fingers. On an electric, you shouldn't need to press them down too hard, placement is important to accomplish this. Instead of spelling it out, try getting a sound on your own with the least amount of pressure.

All those things can help this issue.
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#10
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If you were playing an A phyrgian on a 6 string E standard guitar (root note starts at fret 17 I think), using the box shape and taking the 6 highest notes on the box which I think is 17-18-20 on the B and E strings... where would you place your thumb? I have LOTS of trouble preventing my pinky from flying everywhere, yet when I try and increase speed I end up getting lots of bad joint pain. I play those 6 notes above with fingers 1, 2 and 4.

I swear my fingers are just joint disabled when I try to do anything fast with my pinky.

I tried doing the stuff in the video, but when i try and speed anything up with my pinky that involves minimal pinky movement, I end up getting extreme tension and pain in my pinky joints even when I play as lightly as possible. I can play anywhere else on the fretboard easily. I can shred out scales at 180+ bpm and even do some sweep arppeggios cleanly at that speed (though not uber cleanly, I'm not nearly *that* good at all yet), but the smaller frets are still being a bitch for me !!

If I didn't have that bad pain then I wouldn't make a post at all, but the bad pain scares me.
Last edited by TheChosen1One at Sep 19, 2010,
#11
Quote by TheChosen1One
If you were playing an A phyrgian on a 6 string E standard guitar (root note starts at fret 17 I think), using the box shape and taking the 6 highest notes on the box which I think is 17-18-20 on the B and E strings... where would you place your thumb? I have LOTS of trouble preventing my pinky from flying everywhere, yet when I try and increase speed I end up getting lots of bad joint pain. I play those 6 notes above with fingers 1, 2 and 4.

I swear my fingers are just joint disabled when I try to do anything fast with my pinky.

I tried doing the stuff in the video, but when i try and speed anything up with my pinky that involves minimal pinky movement, I end up getting extreme tension and pain in my pinky joints even when I play as lightly as possible. I can play anywhere else on the fretboard easily. I can shred out scales at 180+ bpm and even do some sweep arppeggios cleanly at that speed (though not uber cleanly, I'm not nearly *that* good at all yet), but the smaller frets are still being a bitch for me !!

If I didn't have that bad pain then I wouldn't make a post at all, but the bad pain scares me.

Stop trying, you can't force yourself to be able to play something. There's no such thing as "speed" per se, it's not a skill - just because you can play something fast doesn't automatically mean you can play everything fast.

If you can play something at speed it's because you've done it to death, you know exactly what it is you want to play, you've committed it to muscle memory and you've practiced it a lot. The reason you're struggling at the higher frets is because you haven't practiced playing around them enough and you're simply expecting the other stuff you've done to automatically carry over and it doesn't work that way. You still need to do the donkey work of perfecting things at slow speeds to allow you to play them faster.

Also try not to obsess over scales so much, scales are a tool to help you understand music, not something to play. Chasing speed practicing scales over and over is just about the biggest waste of a guitarist's time there is. Nobody want's to hear you play scales, they want to hear you play music. How fast you can play a scale is immaterial, what matters is whether your practice is making you better at playing the guitar. Shift your focus and start thinking about how you can use scales to understand and ultimately make music.
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#12
If you were playing an A phyrgian on a 6 string E standard guitar (root note starts at fret 17 I think), using the box shape and taking the 6 highest notes on the box which I think is 17-18-20 on the B and E strings... where would you place your thumb?


The middle of the back of the neck.

If you're experiencing pain you should prolly give guitar a break for a few days, then start practising gently. You cannot force yourself through pain or you will get into serious problems. Make sure your posture and playing is comfortable and relaxed and you shouldn't run into injuries. Also, you can't force "more speed", as Mark was saying.