#1
Hey

I've searched up anchoring in the search bar, but it seems that all threads are either about what anchoring is or why/why not it is bad. However none of them suggests how to actually stop it.

Unfortunately, i have anchored for the whole 7 years that i've been playing. Never knew that it actually was a bad technique, let alone something at all until a few months ago (thanks to UG). Luckily, i've only gust started getting into shred now. However, i know it will be a tough habit to break

I am right now trying to build up my speed. Playing the simple major and minor scales i could play 8th notes at almost 200 bpm. Okay, so it's not very fast, but i worked a while to get there.

However, i was doing that whilst anchoring. What i'm doing now is going through the few guitar shred and technique books i have (from the Troy Stetina series) and completing them without anchoring. By doing this,i aim to improve my speed, overall technique and the stopping of anchoring.

My speed has slowed down, which i expected, however over the last week i have already seen improvements. Although i still find it hard not to anchor when i play other things, especially tremolo picking and power chords (open/barre chords are fine)


I know this is a little longwinded. But do you agree with how i am going about stopping my anchoring problem? Ifnot, what else do you suggest? How long should i do these exercises each day? Are there any exceptions to anchoring (for example, watching a Guitar From Mars DVD by Paul Gilbert - an exceptional and very technical guitarist who DOES NOT anchor - said for tremolo picking, its fine to anchor)


Any help will be appreciated

Cheers
#4
just play consciously and let go, then go back to pay attention to your right hand..
it will be automatic after a while..

something curios for me:

I can do both, but somehow anchoring hurts my wrist, i bet im doing something wrong but I cant figure it out... (nevermind, its the computer mouse not the non anchoring... just figured out the touchpad of the laptop also hurts my wrist and not anchoring is actually really relaxing when done right )
Last edited by Slashiepie at Apr 16, 2011,
#5
anchoring is neither good nor bad, its all really about which is more comfortable for you. there are a lot of great guitar players who anchor, and there are those who dont. if its something you're hell bent on not doing then you'll basically have to start over. breaking a habit you've had for 7 years is not an easy thing to do...
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#6
yep, i wanna stop it. It is a bad thing, with all the damage it could cause in the future, especially because i want to start playing faster and 'shreding'.

But that's exactly it, how do i completely start over? Practice scales over and over again without anchoring? learn some songs? what? am i allowed to anchor when say playing with a band or an assessment performance when im practicing, or will that just counteract all of the practice i put in?
#7
Pretty simple. Lift your pinky off the body of the guitar. If it goes back on there, lift it off.
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#8
its not the pinky (i did write that at the start), its the palm resting on the bridge. And i know its not that simple
#10
its no so much speed, although i recon it would play a role. Its more about the effort you put in and the possibility of injuring yourself (this is whilst anchoring)

but back on the topic, suggestions please on how to rid of my habit of anchoring
#11
I got rid of anchoring almost completely after 9 years of playing anchored.
I didn't plan to - It started naturally. What I did is your basic chromatic exercises for about 15min every day without the anchor (conciouss decision or not..it just started to be more comfortable to me). Whenever I learned a new song/solo i would play it without anchoring from the start. I was still playing achored in my band and live.. After 6 months of this I suddenly realized i'm not anchoring anymore.
It does make a difference. My playing is more fluid and clean. I wouldn't say faster just easier to play clean fast.

The hardest things are
a.) controling your attack
b.) depth of the picking
c.) developing "dead-on" position over string.

Chromatic exercises are the most important. Also play a lot of chords and riffs to get the feel for the travel. And simple arppegios.
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#12
Just pick your palm up a little when playing. It can touch the strings to mute unwanted noises, but don't let it rest on them. Then just start alternate picking real slow and gradually speed up.

At first just use the right hand, and when you get a little more used to it add the left hand for some scales and chromatics.. Then go for songs really slowly. Concentrate on relaxing unnecessary muscles after each and every stroke in the beginning. Remember to keep a good muting habit for unnecessary noise and remember to relax the muscles around your shoulders too.

Learning to relax well takes a lot of time, don't force it. Do yourself a big favor and go slow.

EDIT: Oh, and when you're ending a practice session go even slower with perfect technique! It will set you up for some post-practice development.
Last edited by Unrelaxed at Apr 17, 2011,
#13
Quote by jrakus

I didn't plan to - It started naturally. What I did is your basic chromatic exercises for about 15min every day without the anchor. Whenever I learned a new song/solo i would play it without anchoring from the start. I was still playing achored in my band and live.. After 6 months of this I suddenly realized i'm not anchoring anymore.

Chromatic exercises are the most important. Also play a lot of chords and riffs to get the feel for the travel. And simple arppegios.


So you still played achored in your band? That's pretty good. i wasn't sure if it would completely undo all the practice you had done not to anchor or not.

Quote by Unrelaxed

Just pick your palm up a little when playing. It can touch the strings to mute unwanted noises, but don't let it rest on them.

At first just use the right hand, and when you get a little more used to it add the left hand for some scales and chromatics.. Then go for songs really slowly. Concentrate on relaxing unnecessary muscles after each and every stroke in the beginning. Remember to keep a good muting habit for unnecessary noise and remember to relax the muscles around your shoulders too.


EDIT: Oh, and when you're ending a practice session go even slower with perfect technique! It will set you up for some post-practice development.


How do you go about muting unwanted noise, especially when it comes to playing fast runs?
When you say speed up, do you mean in the one practice session? Because i am sort of building up my speed and accuracy (both hands) at the same time (im doing some simple speed exercises out of a book to practice both my speed/accuracy and achoring), and thus am starting off at a slow speed (around 72bpm, 8th notes) and then building it up (right now its about 150-160 bpm, 8th notes) in the one session. Then i have a break and do it again with a different exercise

Lastly, what do you mean by 'when you're ending a practice session go even slower with perfect technique! It will set you up for some post-practice development'. Sorry, i just dont fully understand what you were trying to say.


Cheers guys, i am finally getting some good advice here, instead of people fighting again over whether anchoring is good or not
#14
anchoring is not bad, and will not cause any damage to you in the future so get that idea out of your head. and the type of "anchoring" you're talking about is actually a good thing because it will allow you to mute strings with your right hand. there are a lot of shredders who anchor the same way you describe, paul gilbert will do it, yngwie does it, alexi laiho does it, michael angelo batio anchors with 3 fingers. the idea itself is not bad, or wrong...

but to start over, you really need to press the reset button. the next time you sit down to play, pretend you dont know anything, and really focus on not resting you hand anywhere on the guitar. it will take a long time to break that habit and to become comfortable doing the things you do now.
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#15
Quote by headfest88
anchoring is not bad, and will not cause any damage to you in the future so get that idea out of your head. and the type of "anchoring" you're talking about is actually a good thing because it will allow you to mute strings with your right hand. there are a lot of shredders who anchor the same way you describe, paul gilbert will do it, yngwie does it, alexi laiho does it, michael angelo batio anchors with 3 fingers. the idea itself is not bad, or wrong...

but to start over, you really need to press the reset button. the next time you sit down to play, pretend you dont know anything, and really focus on not resting you hand anywhere on the guitar. it will take a long time to break that habit and to become comfortable doing the things you do now.


From what i hear, you're partially correct. I think it's moreso when it comes to shreding when damage MAY be involved. But it's also to do with effort and speed, where without anchoring, less effort is needed (and possibly a higher speed).

I have heard that Paul Gilbert doesn't anchor, but on one of his videos he did anchor for tremolo picking, which i would say is fair enough. I can't tell whether he anchors or not, it's hard to tell from the shot angles, but everyone says he doesn't.

Which brings me to another question. How would you mute the strings if your hand is not anchored to the bridge? I mean if Paul Gilbert doesn't anchor AT ALL, how would he mute the strings? I really can't see him anchoring his palm very much because he does to a lot of string skipping and stuff, so if your hand were to be completely off, how would you go about muting the other strings?

And one final question. I don't particularly agree with not anchoring for ever thing, i mean it's very hard not to anchor and get some power chords out, especially if you're chugging or galloping. So how would you determine when it is appropriate or not to anchor?
#16
paul gilbert is not human, which is why he is able to do the things he does. i think a lot of his muting comes from his left hand, and he very lightly mutes with his right. in a lot of his videos it doesnt look like he anchors at all, but i think he is just lightly touching the stings with is picking hand in some instances to help with muting.

i think you really just have to use your best judgment, there are no set rules on when it is or isnt appropriate to anchor. unless im strumming chords, i anchoring pretty much all the time, mostly with my pinky, which helps me gauge where my hand is in relation to the strings. i think its more natural to rest your hand on the bridge because it take effort to having it "floating" above the bridge, but thats just my opinion...
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#17
Quote by flava14
Which brings me to another question. How would you mute the strings if your hand is not anchored to the bridge? I mean if Paul Gilbert doesn't anchor AT ALL, how would he mute the strings? I really can't see him anchoring his palm very much because he does to a lot of string skipping and stuff, so if your hand were to be completely off, how would you go about muting the other strings?

And one final question. I don't particularly agree with not anchoring for ever thing, i mean it's very hard not to anchor and get some power chords out, especially if you're chugging or galloping. So how would you determine when it is appropriate or not to anchor?


Simply touching the guitar with your picking hand is not anchoring. Paul does touch the guitar with his picking hand as without doing that you cannot mute unwanted noise, it's just not going to happen. The key thing about anchoring is that it is specifically touching the guitar in such a way that you are increasing tension or decreasing mobility by doing so. I have never seen PG anchor, at all.

Bearing that in mind, there's nothing more difficult about anchoring when chugging and galloping than there is about any other kind of unanchored playing. If you're finding it hard then you just need to practice better or more.
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#18
I was in the same position as you a lil while back. The worst part about it is that it's going to take you a fairly decent amount of time to get your picking to the speed you could play at when you were anchoring. And as a few guys have mentioned above, anchoring isn't exactly a bad thing.. I have seen a lot of great guitarists anchor.

What really helped me to overcome anchoring was picking with my wrist and not using my arm. Developing the muscles in my wrist took some time and it was a fairly tedious process but I no longer have to position the 3rd and 4th fingers of my picking hand on the pickguard and I feel like my accuracy is far better utilizing this technique. Another great aspect of not anchoring that I have found is that it's far easier for me to keep my picking hand relaxed and that makes everything nicer

Best of luck to you
Last edited by Techofthegods at Apr 18, 2011,