#1
Yeah, yeah it's another one of these threads. Alrighty, what do you guys think is better? I have never anchored but I have noticed that a lot of the faster players do anchor. eg. Synyster Gates (Prepares ultra-flame shield) Steve Morse, Petrucci.

What is the go?
You want some more seeneyj hate? WELL YOU CAN'T HAVE IT

You're all a bunch of f*cking slaves! - Jim Morrison

UG Awards
1st: Biggest Ego
1st: Most Likely To Become Famous
1st: Most Pretentious User
#2
Anchoring is a good sort of guide, to remember where exactly your hand is. It comes in particularly handy with something like sweep picking. It can also keep your hand steadier. It's not a necessity but some players do it. Infact Synyster Gates only anchors with his pinky, which is what i do too.
Anchoring is also useful with hybrid picking. If you don't know what that is, it's an incorporation of both fingerstyle playing and regular playing. However, that'd probably come under the category of playing with your strumming hand open and not so much anchoring.
It can also help very very very slightly when pickup changing or using the whammy bar, but it's seriously not that big of a deal.

It's all comes down to personal preference in the end. James Hetfield for example is considered the best rhythm guitarist of all time and he doesn't anchor. He even considers his own right hand technique to be abnormal and not good.
Also Paul Gilbert. One of the best lead guitarists of all time. He plays with a closed hand generally, and i cant' recall ever seeing him anchor.
Last edited by vayne92 at Apr 13, 2011,
#3
It's also a discussion that has happened every half year orso, please just search around on this forum as we're beating a horse that's been dead for years now.
Wise Man Says: The guitar is obviously female, she's got hips, breasts... and a hole.
UG's Flamenco Club
#4
I personally prefer to anchor. The only time I don't is when I'm trying to show off with flashy hand movements. But the moment things get tricky, the hand is well and truly anchored. Also the thing to note with James Hetfield is that he holds his plectrum with 2 fingers, could be the cause of his lack of anchoring.
#5
There are no pros to anchoring, only the cons of limiting your movement which leads to excess tension. Regardless of the mental aspects of it and the crutch it may have become for you, anchoring makes playing the guitar physically more taxing, and that is the last thing any guitarist wants.

The faster and more often you want to play the more the negative effects are magnified though, so in all honesty if you never really get up to "shred" speeds in your playing it's unlikely to ever affect you either way. If you're a speed demon though and spend hours a day woodshedding anchoring can completely screw up your hand. Personal preference doesn't even come into it, as nobody's preference is to have a crippled hand.
Actually called Mark!

Quote by TNfootballfan62
People with a duck for their avatar always give good advice.

...it's a seagull

Quote by Dave_Mc
i wanna see a clip of a recto buying some groceries.


stuffmycatswatchontv.tumblr.com
#6
Quote by steven seagull
There are no pros to anchoring, only the cons of limiting your movement which leads to excess tension. Regardless of the mental aspects of it and the crutch it may have become for you, anchoring makes playing the guitar physically more taxing, and that is the last thing any guitarist wants.

The faster and more often you want to play the more the negative effects are magnified though, so in all honesty if you never really get up to "shred" speeds in your playing it's unlikely to ever affect you either way. If you're a speed demon though and spend hours a day woodshedding anchoring can completely screw up your hand. Personal preference doesn't even come into it, as nobody's preference is to have a crippled hand.


Ok, good info, but how do you explain all these top players doing it?
You want some more seeneyj hate? WELL YOU CAN'T HAVE IT

You're all a bunch of f*cking slaves! - Jim Morrison

UG Awards
1st: Biggest Ego
1st: Most Likely To Become Famous
1st: Most Pretentious User
#7
Have you noticed that almost all players have a different technique? How do you explain all the people who don't do it though?
#8
There are no pros to anchoring, only the cons of limiting your movement which leads to excess tension.


...What.

Anchoring definitely has upsides, especially among those that aren't 100% comfortable with their picking. For me personally I find that when I'm not anchoring I hit the strings at uneven angles which leads to pick snagging and the occaisional odd sounding chord. No doubt I'll get over that at some point and anchoring won't be necessary and I don't anchor all the time, but saying it has no upside is a gross overstatement.
#9
I primarily anchor with just my pinky, but there are some odd times when i do a full 3 finger sort of anchor. Sometimes when playing rhythm and on occasional soloing sections, but for about 90% of the time i just use my pinky for an anchor.
#10
Quote by vayne92
Have you noticed that almost all players have a different technique? How do you explain all the people who don't do it though?


The problem with looking at other players as a guide is that they can make technique mistakes too.

Sure, some of them seem to get away with it- but that doesn't mean that it's a good technique (by any means)! They would be better off if they didn't anchor (yes, even the really good guys).

Sorry, but just because someone is famous and can shred, doesn't mean they have perfect technique.
#11
Everything thread has been done before--- every post even---- especially your "try the search" response. You are the one beating a dead horse, sir.

Quote by FretboardToAsh
It's also a discussion that has happened every half year orso, please just search around on this forum as we're beating a horse that's been dead for years now.
#12
Quote by Mahabajaba
...What.

Anchoring definitely has upsides, especially among those that aren't 100% comfortable with their picking. For me personally I find that when I'm not anchoring I hit the strings at uneven angles which leads to pick snagging and the occaisional odd sounding chord. No doubt I'll get over that at some point and anchoring won't be necessary and I don't anchor all the time, but saying it has no upside is a gross overstatement.

Those things boil down to one simple thing, lack of practice. You're using anchoring as a crutch because you've misguidedly learned to play that way, that being the case playing unanchored is bound to feel more difficult because you simply haven't done it enough yet.

Covering over inadequacies in your technique by doing something that's physically more demanding and potentially damaging isn't an "upside".

Charlie Sheen takes craploads of cocaine, doesn't mean we should all do that if we want to become famous - famous guitarists who anchor are no different to us, they learned the wrong way and the longer it goes on the harder it is to change.
Actually called Mark!

Quote by TNfootballfan62
People with a duck for their avatar always give good advice.

...it's a seagull

Quote by Dave_Mc
i wanna see a clip of a recto buying some groceries.


stuffmycatswatchontv.tumblr.com
#13
I think it's advantageous for certain things such as picking arpeggios, or even sweeping maybe, but otherwise it's no good.

Anchoring is wankoring.
#14
Quote by steven seagull
There are no pros to anchoring, only the cons of limiting your movement which leads to excess tension. Regardless of the mental aspects of it and the crutch it may have become for you, anchoring makes playing the guitar physically more taxing, and that is the last thing any guitarist wants.

The faster and more often you want to play the more the negative effects are magnified though, so in all honesty if you never really get up to "shred" speeds in your playing it's unlikely to ever affect you either way. If you're a speed demon though and spend hours a day woodshedding anchoring can completely screw up your hand. Personal preference doesn't even come into it, as nobody's preference is to have a crippled hand.

Listen to this man; he knows what he's talking about.

Anchoring may appear to help you but that's because you've learned to play that way and aren't used to the alternative. If you practise with a floating hand, you will be able to achieve better results with less physical effort.
When you anchor, you're using a part of your hand to prevent motion in the rest of your hand (think of how an anchor works on a boat) whilst the muscles involved in picking are trying to move your hand, obviously this isn't good - your muscles are working against each other which leads to tension and tension leads to problems. There is no advantage to anchoring.
Speed is a by-product of shut the fuck up.
#15
Just to add, I still anchor - a lot. I've tried playing unanchored and it's difficult for me, however what's crystal clear is that whilst getting my hand to do exactly what I want is hard, moving it around is a damnsight easier.

The problem is I'd been playing the wrong way for over 15 years, and that's a long time to get used to a bad habit. In all honesty I don't think I practice enough to ever shake it properly, and on the flipside I probably don't play fast enough for it to be an issue - having said that, if I'd been doing things correctly for those 15 years I'd be a lot faster now.
Actually called Mark!

Quote by TNfootballfan62
People with a duck for their avatar always give good advice.

...it's a seagull

Quote by Dave_Mc
i wanna see a clip of a recto buying some groceries.


stuffmycatswatchontv.tumblr.com
#16
I suppose I'm one of the lucky ones who started out playing un-anchored and stuck that way ever since. I can alternate pick very quickly and, just for ****s I decided to try anchoring to see if it would increase my speed. It was a disaster, my fingers were fumbling around, they were not precise anymore, I was randomly muting the wrong strings, etc etc.

So I agree with Seagull, if you are so used to doing something one way, it's very hard to change. Another example of this was when I switched from economy picking to alternate as my 'main' technique. I had economy picked for at least 3-4 years straight and I felt it was hindering my speed and technique, so I swapped. Man, it was like I was re-learning the instrument all over again from scratch, but I powered through and now I feel that I'm a much better player as a result (I know both styles so my picking hand can adjust to either one depending on the task at hand).
PRS SE Custom 22
Peavey Vypyr 30


"When you look into the eyes of a man grown old,
wonder about the secrets gone untold.

When you look into the eyes of a young child,
marvel at the innocence running wild."
#17
Quote by FretboardToAsh
It's also a discussion that has happened every half year orso, please just search around on this forum as we're beating a horse that's been dead for years now.

Way more often than that. There's a new anchoring thread at least once a month.


Mark is right. Anchoring should be avoided. It may make you more accurate with your picking, but it limits you so much more.
Quote by Geldin
Junior's usually at least a little terse, but he knows his stuff. I've always read his posts in a grouchy grandfather voice, a grouchy grandfather with a huge stiffy for alternate picking.
Besides that, he's right this time. As usual.
#19
I used to anchor my hand to the bridge, quite heavily infact. I neer felt that I was very tight and I didn't get fatigued very easily. I could pick very quickly (16ths at 240bpm, I was pretty clean too), but I was really limited. I could only move from a string to an adjacent string, and everything I played was pretty much the samee in terms of attack and dynamics.

After about 4 years of playing, I decided I should try to stop anchoring. My main reason for making the change was because of the limits I felt anchoring was putting on my playing, but I was also interested in getting a guitar with a floating double-locking tremolo, and I wanted to be able to pick without leaning on the bridge and throwing the guitar out of tune.

I found it difficult and frustrating initially, but after while when it became comfortable, I noticed my picking hand was noticeably looser and more free, and that I could get a wider range of dynamics and attack.

Whenever I hit the woodshed for a few weeks, I can reach the same kinds of speeds I could reach anchored. I'm sure if I practiced more consistently I'd be even faster. My hand still touches the guitar for dampening purposes, but I exert almost no force into the guitar.
My name is Tom, feel free to use it.
#20
Quote by Freepower
Mark, you just lock this when you get bored. ^_^

Oh yeah, I can do that now can't I?
Actually called Mark!

Quote by TNfootballfan62
People with a duck for their avatar always give good advice.

...it's a seagull

Quote by Dave_Mc
i wanna see a clip of a recto buying some groceries.


stuffmycatswatchontv.tumblr.com
#21
i anchor some of the time. i don't anchor some of the time. it depends on what i'm doing and how i'm playing. when it helps, i anchor, when it doesn't, i float. it's a false dichotomy. it shouldn't be a debate.
#22
Steve Morse has had severe wrist problems. Just FYI. Wonderful guitarist, but his technique has almost ruined his ability to play.
Quote by dudetheman
So what? I wasted like 5 minutes watching DaddyTwoFoot's avatar.


Metalheads are the worst thing that ever happened to metal.
#23
Lucky I don't anchor then..... :P
You want some more seeneyj hate? WELL YOU CAN'T HAVE IT

You're all a bunch of f*cking slaves! - Jim Morrison

UG Awards
1st: Biggest Ego
1st: Most Likely To Become Famous
1st: Most Pretentious User
#24
Correction on John Petrucci. While he does indeed anchor his picnky when playing most of his riffs; if any of them call for serious soloing or fast picking he does not anchor with his picking hand at all.
#25
Quote by InertSolo
Correction on John Petrucci. While he does indeed anchor his picnky when playing most of his riffs; if any of them call for serious soloing or fast picking he does not anchor with his picking hand at all.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ITIfITKGhVw

0:15, he is definitely anchoring.
Quote by dudetheman
So what? I wasted like 5 minutes watching DaddyTwoFoot's avatar.


Metalheads are the worst thing that ever happened to metal.
#26
Quote by DaddyTwoFoot
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ITIfITKGhVw

0:15, he is definitely anchoring.


I stand corrected. It's weird because I've been watching the Score and Metropolis 2000 live DVDs a lot lately and I haven't noticed him anchoring in all of his solos. I'll give them a closer look I suppose.
#27
Quote by InertSolo
I stand corrected. It's weird because I've been watching the Score and Metropolis 2000 live DVDs a lot lately and I haven't noticed him anchoring in all of his solos. I'll give them a closer look I suppose.

Petrucci is notoriously bad for anchoring. He anchors at least 85% of the time, regardless of what he's playing. Don't get me wrong, he's a great guitarist, but he has some horrible habits.
Quote by Geldin
Junior's usually at least a little terse, but he knows his stuff. I've always read his posts in a grouchy grandfather voice, a grouchy grandfather with a huge stiffy for alternate picking.
Besides that, he's right this time. As usual.