#1
Some people say it matters if your thumb is visible above the fretboard or is behind the fretboard. I see many people, professional and not, shredding with their thumb above the fretboard. Should I focus on keeping my thumb behind or does it really matter?

PS-I saw a Metallica documentary, and Kirk Hammett had his thumb clearly over the fretboard as he played.
#2
Quote by thetominator942
Some people say it matters if your thumb is visible above the fretboard or is behind the fretboard. I see many people, professional and not, shredding with their thumb above the fretboard. Should I focus on keeping my thumb behind or does it really matter?

PS-I saw a Metallica documentary, and Kirk Hammett had his thumb clearly over the fretboard as he played.


Well for a start Kirk is really not someone I'd take any technique from.

On to the actual issue... watch this:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ZcIZaZthqbg

That should tell you everything you need to know.
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#4
I looked for a picture of how I hold my thumb but could not find it anywhere on the internet. For all first position open chords (and most other open chords too) I hold my thumb extended horozontally towards the headstock of the guitar. The only ones I don't do it on are A7th (002223) and sometimes a standard D Chord. Barre chords I use the regular clamp thumb position.
#5
How is that even comfortable?
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#6
In the classical position, I find it more comfortable to have the thumb pointing more towards the head than up to the ceiling. If I try to point it to the ceiling I struggle to keep my wrist straight. Is this a major technical problem?
#7
Quote by daniel_consid
In the classical position, I find it more comfortable to have the thumb pointing more towards the head than up to the ceiling. If I try to point it to the ceiling I struggle to keep my wrist straight. Is this a major technical problem?


I don't think so. It might be a bit less effective and require a bit more force/tension for legato stuff.
#8
Quote by Facecut
I don't think so. It might be a bit less effective and require a bit more force/tension for legato stuff.


I have pretty big hands with long digits, perhaps that's why having it perpendicular to the strings makes my wrist bend over uncomfortably?
#9
Quote by Facecut
I don't think so. It might be a bit less effective and require a bit more force/tension for legato stuff.


What do you mean by "more tension"?
#11
Quote by thetominator942
What do you mean by "more tension"?


When your thumb points to the headstock its more opposite to the index than to the middle finger. The pinky for example might miss its opposition and you need to compensate with more force.
Last edited by Facecut at Sep 3, 2013,
#12
Quote by steven seagull
How is that even comfortable?

for me very comfortable!! it's a bad habit none ever noticed and it just kept doing it because it felt normal and now it's just a regular habit and since it doesn't affect me in anyway or slow me down it's not a bad one. Also it gives more stretch for open chords.
#13
Now, I'm trying to learn to play faster with legato techniques and just with going up and down the fretboard. Am I hurting myself by keeping my thumb visible over the neck?
#14
Ill jump in here with a ninja type question too=) I try keep my thumb down and start a progression of say , g , em , c , d7 all down np , but when I start again my thumb 90 + % of the time skips up on either the g or em without me wanting it to . Is there any tips for trying to keep the lil bugger down there ? ( apart from superglue)