#1
It is always recommend that you make small movements when picking. Does anyone have any suggestions for how you actually reduce the size of your picking motion?
#3
By picking in a smaller radius.
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#4
well what you need to realize is that the pick only has to go past th string far enough to let the string vibrate without hitting the pick. this requiers some precision when you play and not suprisingly takes time and practice. play from the wrist and learn to synch yourpicking with your fretting each note.

again this takes practice and will come in time. once you get it you'll be suprised at how little move ment is really needed. watch vids of yngwie playing and note how little his picking hand moves in relation to the speed of the notes hes playing to get an idea.
#5
Quote by Mpalmond
It is always recommend that you make small movements when picking. Does anyone have any suggestions for how you actually reduce the size of your picking motion?

Basically the answer is "play slower". Slowly enough that you can really think about every single little thing you're doing and properly control your movements without tensing up. This isn't something that you can start slow and speed up, you have to stay slow when you're practicing like this, and do it regularly, say for 10-20 minutes a day to see real progress (if you can stand to do more of it then that's good!). You'll gradually see it filter in to your playing over time, but like I said; this really isn't a "start slow and speed up" kind of thing, this is a "do it really slowly every single time" kind of practice.

Don't worry about it taking a while; I know it's frustrating, but this is not something you will ever be satisfied with in my experience, it's a never-ending quest for better picking and motions.
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#6
As Zaphod mentioned, this is one of those things you have to practice really slowly to get down, same goes with a lot of things on guitar (keeping fingers close to the fretboard, relaxing each finger after fretting with it etc).

Easiest way to get the smallest amount of motion is rest the pick on the string you are going to pick, then just use enough force to push through the string, then stop and relax, then do the same thing in reverse. As mentioned before, do this very slowly so you can control everything and you make sure you relax.

Another thing Zaphod mentioned that is good to be wary about is that not everything you practice is supposed to be played fast later on. These things are always practiced slowly just to reinforce the habit into your playing.
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#8
all good ideas, but you don't want to start cramping or playing like a robot either. sometimes during a performance, you need to express yourself. it's in the wrist.

fwiw, i've been playing 2mm heavy picks for like over 30 years, i've found them to reduce the movement needed to strike a string because they don't "flap" out of the way and you don't have to choke up nor fold up the pick like you would with a thin pick.
Last edited by ad_works at Jul 7, 2015,
#9
Quote by ad_works
or playing like a robot either. sometimes during a performance, you need to express yourself.

I honestly don't see what this has to do with anything that has been said in the thread so far.
R.I.P. My Signature. Lost to us in the great Signature Massacre of 2014.

Quote by Master Foo
“A man who mistakes secrets for knowledge is like a man who, seeking light, hugs a candle so closely that he smothers it and burns his hand.”


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#10
Quote by ad_works
fwiw, i've been playing 2mm heavy picks for like over 30 years, i've found them to reduce the movement needed to strike a string because they don't "flap" out of the way and you don't have to choke up nor fold up the pick like you would with a thin pick.


Not sure what you class as a 'thin pick'. IMO, if you are bending a 1mm pick then you are digging into the strings too much and aren't angling the pick, both of which will slow you down.
#11
check out "cracking the code" by troy grady series on youtube. fantastic stuff.
#12
or you could go " jeff beck" use your fingers..beck can get some tasty runs with very little finger motion..
play well

wolf
#13
Quote by monwobobbo
well what you need to realize is that the pick only has to go past th string far enough to let the string vibrate without hitting the pick. this requiers some precision when you play and not suprisingly takes time and practice. play from the wrist and learn to synch yourpicking with your fretting each note.

again this takes practice and will come in time. once you get it you'll be suprised at how little move ment is really needed. watch vids of yngwie playing and note how little his picking hand moves in relation to the speed of the notes hes playing to get an idea.


+1

Also you could try to practice in front of the mirror from that angle you could see a lot better if you move your wrist more that it need to be moved. So you just fix the problem if it exist on the low speed and get use to it. Also you could try to record yourself on the video or use a web cam. You will be amazed how much you didn't noticed in you technique before

I hope this will help
#14
What helped my technique was to start imagining my hands were precision machines. For example, my left hand is just a set of 4 "pistons" that press down with ONLY the amount of pressure required and lift up ONLY the amount of distance required to not touch the string. No more and no less, like a machine. A machine would not be designed to have those pistons flying all over the place. They're rigid!

For the right hand, though, I like to think of it like a broken clock hand. Your hand is completely rigid (NO finger movement during picking) and your wrist pivots in extremely small motions back and forth like a broken clock hand. Like everyone else said, you have to do this really slowly for a long time (it took me a whole month of EXTREMELY EXTREMELY slow picking before I felt like the technique was cemented into my natural playing enough to play some actual slow music properly).

However, here is something you can try which might help you to better understand the motion. Try picking one note rapidly really fast (which is tremolo picking). Notice how your movements will naturally get smaller as you pick faster. Now, if only guitar playing required a single note, you'd be all set!! People tend to make larger motions when they pick slowly, but you have to overcome that. Imagine if you used a high speed camera to record yourself playing that one note really fast, then watched the footage slowed down. THAT'S what your picking should resemble. Of course, with practice you can refine your movements even smaller, like when John Petrucci plays 16th note triplets at 900BPM!