#1
As someone who plays guitar, and also sketches, draws, and paints, as well as a gamer.. How do I protect my precious hands so I don't end up messing up my wrist tendons? As in, what's proper form and what isn't? I'm already trying to move away from Anchoring.

Any help, advice, tips, would be greatly appreciated.
#2
Honestly all you really have to do is stop if something hurts and set your guitar position so your fretting wrist isn't bent at an absurd angle.

Contrary to the nonsense spread by internet shredders, "anchoring" has nothing whatsoever to do with it.
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#3
I heard Anchoring puts more tension into your wrists, and gives you carpal tunnel later on in life, though.. I'm not even sure which standpoint is right.

Also, if I go without Anchoring, does my whole right arm have to NOT touch any part of the guitar?
#4
^ what it boils down to is - keep your right hand as relaxed as possible and don't press into the guitar.

In general, don't overexert yourself (people generally fret too hard and hold on to the pick too hard) and make sure your wrists stay fairly straight. If you ever feel sharp pains you want to take a break and figure out why it just hurt.

Oh, and a decent diet and staying hydrated are good.

Contrary to the nonsense spread by internet shredders, "anchoring" has nothing whatsoever to do with it.


Contrary to the nonsense spread by internet ______ , "anchoring" can certainly be a bad thing. Read the main sticky if you want my take on it.

Good to have you back man.
#5
Quote by ageispolis
As someone who plays guitar, and also sketches, draws, and paints, as well as a gamer.. How do I protect my precious hands so I don't end up messing up my wrist tendons? As in, what's proper form and what isn't? I'm already trying to move away from Anchoring.

Any help, advice, tips, would be greatly appreciated.

what helps me...
strectch regularly before you practice (and after if possible).
For me, real proper stretching is done eqally on both sides, and all together it should take 15-20 minutes to complete. Start with neck/shoulders/back, then upper arms, forearms/wrists and hands/fingers last. The reason for working your way down like that is to get the blood flow from upper body to the fingers going before you stretch the small delicate stuff.

Then when practicing start with lighter work before you hit the more strenous stuff so you gradually warm up to it.
(and just use common sense to know if/when you are over-doing anything). We all - myself included - sometimes get lost in the practice and disregard when it's too much.

If your hurting at all, don't be afraid to take a few days off and let yourself recover.

RE: proper form, there are guidelines but since we are all different body types, there's no exact science.
hold the neck in a way that is comfortable to you and when you fret it feels natural.
A good starting point is to have a straightened wrist and your thumb somwhere behind the neck most of the time to get maximum (and comfortable) mobility on the fretboard.

Last thought, if there is recurring tension in your body when you play... learn to become aware of it and train it out soon as possible. Failure to address that tension is bad news. If it's originating up high like in your shoulders or upper arms, that will most likely bring problems down in your wrists and hands eventually.
Hands/fingers are connected up to bigger muscles and blood flow areas of the body.
The last thing you need it a nerve pinch up in the neck or shoulder area. That type of injury can sideline your for quite a while. (watch out for recurring numbness)

I hope that gave you some ideas. good luck.

Edit:
Quote by ageispolis
Also, if I go without Anchoring, does my whole right arm have to NOT touch any part of the guitar?

No. it's common to rest your forearm on the guitar top.
Also you sometimes need to contact strings for muting. I like to use the side of my thumb usually.
Anchoring is more like when you need to have your hand fixed against the guitar a certain way, in order to play. (Majority seems to agree that is generally not good)
Last edited by cringer at May 7, 2011,
#6
I am 62 years Old I have played Guitar since 12 years old I am now a soloist Classical guitarist and a great lead guitarist I love playing rock or anything that has a nice chord progression.
Recently I have been exercising my pinky finger to stretch 8 frets further to obtain the higher harmonic notes in lead solo playing as I am holding the chord structure and keeping the beat and bass sounds going, until my wrist started to hurt so bad I had to put the guitar down even now as I type the throbbing is now just below my elbow all the way down to my wrist and hand, I am sure I did something so putting my guitar down is a must for a while, I was practicing Ave Maria for a church all three verses as now I hope I don't forget what I learned, I usually practice 15 to 18 hours a day. I'm sure some of you will say wow thats a lot of practicing and yes I agree but the Guitar has a lot to offer it's music is heart warming for me as I play it.
#7
lol that must be humour but i dont quite get it.

it still got me salivating.. 18 hours a day for 50 years, that would be 8-6 hours more than Vai per day!!!
Im gonna stay away from here ,because if it turns to be true you will melt all our faces.
#8
To be fair i practice a hell of a lot aswell. Its kindof an addiction. I find that a guitar in the right position solves almost any problem (pain-wise). Playing the guitar low is fine but i find tilting it so that your wrist doesnt overextend solves the problem of, well.. overextending your wrist. I usually have five minute breaks every so often just to like get a coffee or something. A five minute rest before anything even begins to ache has always worked for me. It's like weightlifitng. You wouldn't do 1000 reps with no rests would you?
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#10
I really think it boils down to if something hurts or does not feel right, stop.
#11
Quote by ageispolis
As someone who plays guitar, and also sketches, draws, and paints, as well as a gamer.. How do I protect my precious hands so I don't end up messing up my wrist tendons? As in, what's proper form and what isn't? I'm already trying to move away from Anchoring.

Any help, advice, tips, would be greatly appreciated.


Proper spinal column posture, while sitting and while standing.
Proper posture when using the computer.
Isometric excercises before, after and during intensive playing.
Remember: Tension isnt your friend..
#12
You will be able to tell the difference too, pain from just getting used to stretching is a lot different then pain that is doing or going to do damage. As mentioned stretch out your hands well before you start, stop playing if you feel discomfort in your hands dont force it especially if you arent doing a show, thats how you will get hurt.
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#13
Quote by Ronald Baak
I am 62 years Old I have played Guitar since 12 years old I am now a soloist Classical guitarist and a great lead guitarist I love playing rock or anything that has a nice chord progression.
Recently I have been exercising my pinky finger to stretch 8 frets further to obtain the higher harmonic notes in lead solo playing as I am holding the chord structure and keeping the beat and bass sounds going, until my wrist started to hurt so bad I had to put the guitar down even now as I type the throbbing is now just below my elbow all the way down to my wrist and hand, I am sure I did something so putting my guitar down is a must for a while, I was practicing Ave Maria for a church all three verses as now I hope I don't forget what I learned, I usually practice 15 to 18 hours a day. I'm sure some of you will say wow thats a lot of practicing and yes I agree but the Guitar has a lot to offer it's music is heart warming for me as I play it.

Good on you, way to toot your own horn. Meanwhile back in reality, nobody really cares. Not to mention that this post has virtually nothing to do with the original post.


In response to TS, good job for avoiding anchoring. Once you start, it can be a tough habit to break. To help your hands, stretch out before playing and take breaks frequently. You don't have to practice like 10 hours straight to be a good guitarist. Just an hour here, 2 hours there is enough as long as you are practicing properly. And as other have said, relax. Excess tension is never good. If you start to feel any pain, stop and take a break.
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Besides that, he's right this time. As usual.
#14
Quote by ageispolis
As someone who plays guitar, and also sketches, draws, and paints, as well as a gamer.. How do I protect my precious hands so I don't end up messing up my wrist tendons? As in, what's proper form and what isn't? I'm already trying to move away from Anchoring.

Any help, advice, tips, would be greatly appreciated.


A personal trainer friend of mine recommended I use a stress or squishy ball to squeeze right before a practice session and then again whenever my hands started to feel fatigued or once per hour, (whichever came first) and also at the end of a practice session, no matter how long (or short).

10 times squeezed with my whole hand then 10 times each between each finger and thumb. I do on both hands.

I've been doing this for a few months now and I'm seeing improvement in my hand/finger stamina to play longer.

This seems to work for me. Maybe give this a try.
#15
Quote by Ronald Baak
I am 62 years Old I have played Guitar since 12 years old I am now a soloist Classical guitarist and a great lead guitarist I love playing rock or anything that has a nice chord progression.
Recently I have been exercising my pinky finger to stretch 8 frets further to obtain the higher harmonic notes in lead solo playing as I am holding the chord structure and keeping the beat and bass sounds going, until my wrist started to hurt so bad I had to put the guitar down even now as I type the throbbing is now just below my elbow all the way down to my wrist and hand, I am sure I did something so putting my guitar down is a must for a while, I was practicing Ave Maria for a church all three verses as now I hope I don't forget what I learned, I usually practice 15 to 18 hours a day. I'm sure some of you will say wow thats a lot of practicing and yes I agree but the Guitar has a lot to offer it's music is heart warming for me as I play it.


...not sure if troll :\
#16
Quote by Ronald Baak
I am 62 years Old I have played Guitar since 12 years old I am now a soloist Classical guitarist and a great lead guitarist I love playing rock or anything that has a nice chord progression.
Recently I have been exercising my pinky finger to stretch 8 frets further to obtain the higher harmonic notes in lead solo playing as I am holding the chord structure and keeping the beat and bass sounds going, until my wrist started to hurt so bad I had to put the guitar down even now as I type the throbbing is now just below my elbow all the way down to my wrist and hand, I am sure I did something so putting my guitar down is a must for a while, I was practicing Ave Maria for a church all three verses as now I hope I don't forget what I learned, I usually practice 15 to 18 hours a day. I'm sure some of you will say wow thats a lot of practicing and yes I agree but the Guitar has a lot to offer it's music is heart warming for me as I play it.



I get it now! Now I won't get injured from playing guitar!


To avoid injury, TS, never use more force than required. If you need to strain for something, you're doing something wrong.
#17
allways do warmups, and take rests every 30 min, if you feel pain rest until you dont feel it anymore. i failed that and have a injury that i feel pain from 24/7 for about 2 years now..
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