#1
I changed my picking style a few months ago from holding it with my thumb and two fore-fingers, pick facing down, to holding it protruding from the side of my thumb and first fore-finger. Reasons for this are that it has improved my picking speed and technique greatly, allows me to easier switch to palm mutes and tapping, allows me to do pinch harmonics much easier, also allows me to sweep pick easier.

Problem is, my first two fore-fingers are getting, quite literally, raped. They bash against the strings a lot - I am aggressive and tend to hit them especially when strumming. It doesn't make any impact on sound, but it fucking hurts. Not much I can do about it either - I've invested several hundred hours into developing this technique and I'm not willing to change. Also, they are the two fingers I use two mute - I play in a percussive nature, especially on acoustic, again this fucking hurts.

So much so that they've become very rough to touch, and have very small but painful concealed wounds at the ends of the fingernails. I'm not changing my technique like I said, I've also tried plasters, which prevents my joints from moving to their potential (I have small fingers) and make the pick slip from my hand. I've also tried sellotape, split as soon as I strummed

What can I do UG'ers?
Last edited by Andalus at Dec 13, 2011,
#2
I hate to say it but I'm pretty sure the problem is your technique, what I would suggest is start trying different types of picks and see how you can change the technique to fix the problem, lots of guys find jazz picks really versatile for shred guitar, Chris Broderick (Megadeth) uses a thumb clip. You may be able to get all the versatility you want without hurting yourself simply by using different picks
#3
Tough it out until you form callouses on those fingers
My fingers do the same thing, but I've never had pain, and had callouses form fairly quickly.
Man up
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#4
Quote by Koshman32
Tough it out until you form callouses on those fingers
My fingers do the same thing, but I've never had pain, and had callouses form fairly quickly.
Man up


Um, did you read it at all? I have callouses on both hands, it's just I am a little bit concerned about this, it's my picking fingers. I.E PICKING fingers not FRETTING fingers.

And no, I am not changing technique or pick. I like my picks, and my technique. Guess it's just gonna be constant blisters

ETA:

Playing acoustic a ton has made both me fretting and picking fingerTIPS as hard as a box of nails. However, it is just above the fingernail. I.E a SENSITIVE PART OF THE FUCKING FINGER.
Last edited by Andalus at Dec 13, 2011,
#5
Quote by Andalus
Um, did you read it at all? I have callouses on both hands, it's just I am a little bit concerned about this, it's my picking fingers. I.E PICKING fingers not FRETTING fingers.

And no, I am not changing technique or pick. I like my picks, and my technique. Guess it's just gonna be constant blisters

ETA:

Playing acoustic a ton has made both me fretting and picking fingerTIPS as hard as a box of nails. However, it is just above the fingernail. I.E a SENSITIVE PART OF THE FUCKING FINGER.

Then you're going to have to change your technique, or live with the pain. Learn to move your fingers up a little on the pick.
MY GEAR:
PRS SE Custom 24
Jackson DKA7
Gibson Explorer
MESA/Boogie Express 5:25
BOSS GT-100

BOSS TU-2
Dunlop Cry Baby Classic
BOSS NS-2
VOX Joe Satriani Ice 9 OD Pedal
VOX Joe Satriani Time Machine Delay Pedal
Ernie Ball Strings
V Picks
#6
I'd say you're probably choking up on the pick too much. Let a bit more of the pick out so you have more to hit the strings with.
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.
#8
Quote by Freepower
Stop hitting the strings with your fingers and swear less.

Also, don't use "literally" for emphasis.


Why thank you for that literally extremely helpful fucking post. Don't you have some potatoes to pick?
#9
Flaming mods... generally not a bright move. And my advice is pretty relevant tbh - the vast majority of people hold the pick like you and strike the string without knuckles hitting the strings.

Actually hold a UK passport, currently drinking tea and lording it over the Indian subcontinent.
#10
This is all in your technique. I had a similar issue and destroyed all the skin around my index finger when i switch from electric guitar to electric bass. I unfortunately started playing bass with a pick (now using fingers) but my technique proved to be a bit overly aggressive and i was a bit short on the pick. It caused my index finger to repeated slice into the string, gouging the skin and sawing part of my fingernail.

For starters, i began using a heavier pick and backing off how i held it. In other words, i no longer hold it like i hold it when i play guitar (granted this may or may not work as you are playing guitar). The end result was skin began to grow back after the horrible scabbing fell off. Hurt like a bastard....

Good luck
#11
Quote by Andalus
I've invested several hundred hours into developing this technique and I'm not willing to change


There is your problem. Hitting your fingers off the strings so hard that it hurts is bad technique. It just you being sloppy.

Oh and stop flaming mods. They know a lot more than you about technique and they come on this site and give people advice for free.
#12
I flamed him because he annoyed me as he commented on a word I like to use for emphasis, even though it is of no relevance to him. Also I found his "advice" unhelpful. This + sarky comment = xenophobic slurs.

Anyway, cheers for the advice folks. I'm left-handed but I play with my right which makes picking a bastard. I'll try to choke the pick less, but doing so slows me down because I find it harder to be accurate with more of the pick showing.
#13
Dude, i dont know what you expect to hear.. you say it hurts but you dont want to change it. Then stick with it and stop whining, because hitting other strings with your fingers is a waste of effort and really sloppy technique, but keep developing it, maybe it will take you where you want to go.

Or maybe (probably actually) after a couple of years it will take you nowhere and you will realize you have to change it because it sucks, and it would have been easier after having only used it for 10 months.

So my advice.. +1 on stop hitting the strings with your fingers.. Swear as much as you want and the word literally made me think about who might be raping your fingers.
Is it a woman, a man or an animal ? do they stick them up their.. or just you know.. f.. em.. ?
Last edited by Slashiepie at Dec 15, 2011,
#14
Woah, hold up there Einstein, you think I don't know that it's sloppy technique? And how is hitting other strings with my fingers a waste of effort? I don't intentionally do it. Like I say, I'm left-handed. I know you're a genius but even geniuses need to read posts...

Anyway I've put some medical tape on it because I've split my finger open.

Did I mention I do this by muting and strumming? Strangely, it actually helps my playing because I can mute faster.
#15
I think Freepower point about not swearing is somewhat true, in an abstract sense. Swearing implies anger of frustration; if you're frustrated its easy to let your technique fall apart. Similarly,if you're angry, you may pick unnecessarily agressively. I'm not trying to break down your psyche or anything, I just mean to say that playing in that way can be detrimental.

In the wise words of Yoda:

Quote by Yoda

Fear is the path to the dark side. Fear leads to anger. Anger leads to hate. Hate leads to suffering.


Slashiepie - I guess the strings are just penetrating his fingers without consent.
ESP Horizon FR II (EMG) / Ibanez Prestige RG1570 (DiMarzio Crunch Lab & LiquiFire pickups)
Last edited by llBlackenedll at Dec 15, 2011,
#16
I used to have the same problem, want to know what I did about it? I evaluated my technique, sucked it up and cleaned up my playing; the advice you're ignoring because you've invested "several hundred hours" or whatever is actually the way to go. I pick quite hard too, and I use tons of rakes - I knew I'd have to work on simply not hitting the strings if I wanted to play cleanly, so that's what I did. It's not as monumental a change as you make it out to be, but if you don't care enough to make an adjustment to something in your playing that's obviously upsetting you, that's up to you.

Stop making excuses like "there's nothing I can do about it" - there is something you can do about it, you choose not to. There's a huge distinction, and there's no reason to act like a prick because people have given you the really obvious answer to your question.
#17
So you admit you're playing with sloppy technique but you don't want to change it because you've invested time into your current technique?

Man up, stop flaming people and simply change your technique to fix this problem. You've had plently of helpful advice in this topic so why you see the need to be so rude to everyone is beyond me.

Would you rather no one responded at all instead? ...
#18
Quote by Freepower

Also, don't use "literally" for emphasis.

He is saying the his fingers are LITERALLY being RAPED! that is much more serious than some picking problem.
#19
Quote by llBlackenedll

Slashiepie - I guess the strings are just penetrating his fingers without consent.


That is very insightful. I guess he did use the word 'literally' in a correct manner. My apologies!
#20
Quote by llBlackenedll

In the wise words of Yoda:
Slashiepie - I guess the strings are just penetrating his fingers without consent.


Poor him, i heard they are black Strings.

Edit: Lol, love how the quote button changed Yodas quote!
#22
Quote by Good_Lord
Isn't this the reason why Kirk Hammet tapes his fingers ?

Is it?

Anyway, there were some replies I found useful, some I didn't. Namely the ones who insisted I change my technique even although I have stated several times I am not willing to. Yes it is sloppy. No I do not care. Yes I am a mardy fucker. I'm looking for solutions to counter, not prevent. That means that changing my technique is out of the window.

Anyway, I digress. Useful people, you know who you are. Useless people, you know who you are.

I've wrapped up my fingers in medical tape and the split is healed, somehow. It's also stopped the pain.
#23
Quote by Good_Lord
Isn't this the reason why Kirk Hammet tapes his fingers ?




TS dont forget wearing condoms on your fingers :P
Last edited by Slashiepie at Dec 16, 2011,
#24
Quote by Slashiepie
Poor him, i heard they are black Strings.:


That's a myth man. Black strings are, on average, the same size as all the others.
#25
Quote by Maximo33
That's a myth man. Black strings are, on average, the same size as all the others.


Oh wow, really? Enlightening.
#26
Quote by Maximo33
That's a myth man. Black strings are, on average, the same size as all the others.


Its all in how you use the strings!
Thickness is what matters!! not lenght!!
#27
Quote by Andalus
Anyway, I digress. Useful people, you know who you are. Useless people, you know who you are.

Well, since you're defining "useful" as "the response I want to hear", then I guess some people were useful in the context of that aim. However, it's the "useless" responses that ultimately would prove more useful in the long run.

If you don't want to change then that's up to you, but that sort of advice isn't as useful as you might think.
#28
Quote by Andalus
Is it?

Anyway, there were some replies I found useful, some I didn't. Namely the ones who insisted I change my technique even although I have stated several times I am not willing to. Yes it is sloppy. No I do not care. Yes I am a mardy fucker. I'm looking for solutions to counter, not prevent. That means that changing my technique is out of the window.

Anyway, I digress. Useful people, you know who you are. Useless people, you know who you are.

I've wrapped up my fingers in medical tape and the split is healed, somehow. It's also stopped the pain.


May I ask, then, what the point is in asking people on a technique forum when you're not willing to touch your technique at all? I'm pretty sure wrapping tape around your fingers isn't a technique (though what do I know - maybe there's a knack to it).

My point is that if you post on a technique forum asking what you need to do about a problem that is entirely symptomatic of poor technique, and you know it, surely you should have expected most people to answer from a technique perspective.

It's like going to a plumber and asking for a raincoat because your boiler keeps exploding.
ESP Horizon FR II (EMG) / Ibanez Prestige RG1570 (DiMarzio Crunch Lab & LiquiFire pickups)
Last edited by llBlackenedll at Dec 16, 2011,
#29
Quote by Andalus

Problem is, my first two fore-fingers are getting, quite literally, raped. They bash against the strings a lot - I am aggressive and tend to hit them especially when strumming. It doesn't make any impact on sound, but it fucking hurts.


Hey man I almost started getting the same when I changed to your grip,
I'm not experience, but try concentrate on tilting the thumb-side of your picking hand slightly towards your guitar

This should elevate your other fingers out of range of the strings, and instead of slashing your hand across the strings when you strum, make as if you're smoothing out a wrinkle with the left side of your thumb, or rolling some dough flat, hope you understand the image


Good luck bro
"You've done it! Now do it well! "
- David Belle, Parkour Traceur
Last edited by Gorrox at Dec 23, 2011,
#30
Quote by Andalus
Is it?

Anyway, there were some replies I found useful, some I didn't. Namely the ones who insisted I change my technique even although I have stated several times I am not willing to. Yes it is sloppy. No I do not care. Yes I am a mardy fucker. I'm looking for solutions to counter, not prevent. That means that changing my technique is out of the window.

Anyway, I digress. Useful people, you know who you are. Useless people, you know who you are.

I've wrapped up my fingers in medical tape and the split is healed, somehow. It's also stopped the pain.

Asks for advice.

Complains about it unless it's what he wants to hear.

No more thread for you ungrateful boy.
Actually called Mark!

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