#1
hey, I've been playing seriously for a couple years ago and am completely self taught. I am trying to clean up my left hand technique and wondering what muscles I should be using to push down the strings, excercises to strengthen those particular muscles, and things to avoid as I try to reteach myself.

Also, I like to use my thumb on top on occasion to get certain voicings (Hendrix, Frusciante) and am not after being an amazing shredder. I'm just looking for extra comfort, smoothness, and a technique that will keep my hand healthy
#2
As a self-taught player myself, regardless of how crap I am, the golden rule is never to feel tension.
That's why you start slow and steady, because it feels smooth and natural, and by repeating certain movements you get accustomed to them so that you increase speed little by little.
It's good that you're not bothered about lightning speed, just start moving your fingers up and down the fretboard, that way you also get to cover the more musical aspects of playing at the same time, hopefully.
#3
Quote by Basti95
As a self-taught player myself, regardless of how crap I am, the golden rule is never to feel tension.


I would agree with most of what you said, except for this.

There will inevitably be "tension," as tension is created upon the use of any muscle, and force needs to be exerted to fret any notes and plucks strings.

The key is to release the tension as soon as possible, immediately after plucking the note. Just relax the muscle when you're done sounding the note. You are searching for "optimal" tension. Remember though, the amount of tension required to fret a note is typically much less than most players are inclined to use.

As for exercises: you will want to practice your trills, while maintaining good form (thumb centered on back of neck, all four fingers positioned directly over the fingerboard, as though they could drill down into it).

Here's the exercise: trill first index to middle, the index to ring, then index to pinky. Then start on your middle and go m to r, m to p. Then start on the ring and go r to p.
Last edited by Riffman15 at Jan 13, 2012,
#4
Quote by Riffman15
I would agree with most of what you said, except for this.

There will inevitably be "tension," as tension is created upon the use of any muscle, and force needs to be exerted to fret any notes and plucks strings.

The key is to release the tension as soon as possible, immediately after plucking the note. Just relax the muscle when you're done sounding the note. You are searching for "optimal" tension. Remember though, the amount of tension required to fret a note is typically much less than most players are inclined to use.

As for exercises: you will want to practice your trills, while maintaining good form (thumb centered on back of neck, all four fingers positioned directly over the fingerboard, as though they could drill down into it).

Here's the exercise: trill first index to middle, the index to ring, then index to pinky. Then start on your middle and go m to r, m to p. Then start on the ring and go r to p.


Pretty sure he meant you should FEEL tensed up. Holding your breath is probably a good example of feeling tension.
Last edited by lilke at Jan 14, 2012,