#1
Well I'd say that just about every practice session of mine is really a workout. I took a break for a while a bit back and have jumped back into practicing in the past month or so. It didn't take me much to get back to where I was but I can't help but think that every time I practice its more of a workout to try to build my hands endurance and strength (its always been that way actually). I guess you can say my goals for level of playing are really high up there as what I want to play/write is of the level of technical death metal. So I'm constantly trying to build up my picking hand, my tremolo speed and endurance and finger endurance and speed. It seems the majority of my practicing is me working up on a metronome slowly until I get to a max point (which varies just about every day from lower to higher) and until my hands/arm have just had enough and I'll move onto the next exercise. Then Ill notice the next day or whenever I resume practice, I cant always get as high as the day before or vice versa. I've made topics here before, most recently one specifically about tremolo picking and everyone said the obvious is "practice", which I do, but I feel like there has to be something wrong here because is it supposed to always feel like a workout? When will I be at the level of musicianship where playing stuff at these incredibly fast speeds wont feel like "work" but something very natural. Am I doing something wrong?
#2
relax your hands when playing and it will dramatically increase endurance, it could also help to work on making your movements smaller instead of just faster, normally its hard to work on smaller movement a full speed so you may have to slow down a bit, and if you work so hard that your hand is tired the next day use that time to work on slower, less exhaustive but more technical things, then work for more shear speed when it recovers
#3
Well, we all need to do workouts for our hands, depending on what we want to do.

Sometimes it just feels like workouts for me too, hell i do alternate picking workouts 20 min/day everyday! But it sure shows that those workouts keep my alternate picking up to the point i need it too be, this is really shown when i learn songs i want to learn.

It takes time to progress with anything, but if you as said feel like you are stuck in one place and can´t progress, you´ll have to look at your technique and see "What can i do to make this more efficient?".
When you will be at that point none knows, it depends on how efficient you practice, how often you practice, how long you practice and how WELL you practice. Musicianship aint something that comes in a year or two, it takes serious work. Especially if you want to play an advanced type of music that require more technique/theory that others.

That´s just my 2 cents, hope i helped.
#4
Learning to play is like learning martial arts. You need strenght and control. Right now you're just lifting weights.
Pamposh’s final question before drifting into a state of transcendent ecstasy was, “But Master, if everything is an illusion, then why does anything matter?”

To which the master replied, “It may all be an illusion, but it’s a very real illusion.”
#5
You should be very relaxed in your wrist, fingers, and elbow area. Don't stiffen up when trying to play fast. You can get injured. Yes; I'm serious.
#6
Quote by gynther flynt
Learning to play is like learning martial arts. You need strenght and control. Right now you're just lifting weights.


Interestingly said, but how would you say I go about achieving the "control" part?
Last edited by Templar0220 at Aug 2, 2011,
#7
Quote by Fingerboy18
You should be very relaxed in your wrist, fingers, and elbow area. Don't stiffen up when trying to play fast. You can get injured. Yes; I'm serious.


Yeah I know you can get injured, like for example I'm feeling some soreness in my forearm right now (should I be alarmed?). I just think the whole being relaxed while trying to push yourself is a little easier said than done. How can I go about doing that?
#8
When you say "workout," it makes me think you might be fighting tension as you increase your speed, which is what would cause it to feel difficult. As has been said before, keep everything as relaxed as possible. The only tension present in your entire arm should be just enough to pick a single note when you have to, and this shouldn't build up over time. Instead of fighting for speed, play at an almost ridiculously slow speed and work on making alternate picking at that speed more comfortable and accurate as opposed to forcibly speeding up. You'll find that a lot of quality practice at slow speeds will bring your top speed through the roof. Also remember that your fast picking should feel the same as picking slowly.
Last edited by _Benighted_ at Aug 2, 2011,
#9
Ok will do. By the way, should I be worried about this slight aching in my right forearm? I really hope I did not injure myself, is this anything to worry about too much? It isnt excruciating or anything its just noticeable. How will I know if its serious or not?
#10
I think you'd know if anything was seriously wrong. A slight ache should be nothing to worry about, but it could be taken as a message from your body that the way you're doing things now isn't working out. I'd take a breather until it feels better and then try the more relaxed approach.
#11
Quote by Templar0220
Yeah I know you can get injured, like for example I'm feeling some soreness in my forearm right now (should I be alarmed?). I just think the whole being relaxed while trying to push yourself is a little easier said than done. How can I go about doing that?


For sure dude. It is harder than it sounds. If you feel that you need to tense up a lot when pushing yourself, you may be pushing yourself too hard too fast. You shouldn't be uncomfortably sore. Keep an eye on it and make sure the discomfort doesn't intensify. That's your body's warning sign telling you. Joint pain is ALWAYS bad, but muscle soreness is quite normal as long as it is that alone. I play bass and I occasionally get forearm soreness the day after from having a long practice session.

I suggest washing your hands with warm water and starting off slow, then do some thorough hand, wrist, and finger stretching to keep your tendons healthy. If you notice that you have reduced flexibility while opening your hand, you gotta stretch more or exercise the opposing muscle to create a healthier alignment. IE: make a light fist and slowly open your hand as far as is comfortable. Do this everyday and stop when you feel a slight burning. This will keep both sides of your forearm at a similar strength, which will reduce your chance of getting carpal tunnel syndrome and it'll increase your hand speed when moving fingers from one place to another.
#12
Well I must say since ive been making sure ive been relaxed when I play my speed has increased considerably. Huh, who would have thought that was my main barrier but I guess its true. Im quite please with this, thanks everyone.
#13
Quote by Templar0220
Well I must say since ive been making sure ive been relaxed when I play my speed has increased considerably. Huh, who would have thought that was my main barrier but I guess its true. Im quite please with this, thanks everyone.


Good work!