So I broke my hand and will probably be needing surgery. It's a rough estimate of 4 month recovery.

Has anyone had a similar injury and how did it affect your "guitar skills"?
I knew a guy who broke his hand pretty substantially a good few years back, when I saw his band again later that year he'd actually improved quite a lot.  Don't know him any more, but he could definitely shred.

Realistically, as long as you allow your hand to rest, recover, and heal properly, you'll lose a bit of time but it shouldn't matter in the long run.
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.”

Which hand..

If it's not your fretting hand then I can think of no better time to practice your legato. 4 months of legato practice and you'll improve tremendously. You'll probably even look back a few years from now and think god I'm glad I broke my hand that one time.
If you did break your fretting hand then I'd just let it heal. Maybe you can dedicate 10 minutes a day to some picking practice but beyond that there's only so much you can do.

EDIT: You could dedicate your time to learning some theory or even composing in Guitar Pro or something.
Last edited by vayne92 at Aug 9, 2017,
Yeah I've been reading some theory lately since I neglected 100%...and I did break my fretting hand. Surgery tomorrow!
Ouch. No advice on the fretting hand, but I broke two metacarpals in my picking hand and also have osteoarthritis in that hand now after that injury. I actually eventually had to step down as guitarist in my band, as my hand would cramp and seize up, and I was unable to keep up with the more technical direction our band was taking.

I still play guitar plenty, just less overall, and I play less physically demanding stuff now (I have trouble especially with alternate picking accurately across strings now).

Good luck in the surgery, I have talked to others who have experienced similar injuries and come out just fine.
So it's been about 9 days since surgery and I started playing a little bit. Playing a c chord is painful and hard to do in time but playing seems to help out a lot in the physical therapy aspect. Feels good to be jamming though!
ImDesigner I'm going to echo what I said earlier: please be careful.  Pain is your body's way of telling you that something isn't good for you, and you should only play through it if you've been assured by a medical professional that it's all right to do so.

If you look around you can find all sorts of stories of musicians who've done themselves long term harm by not doing what the doctors told them.  Not even just limited to guitar: look at James Labrie, the vocalist from Dream Theater.  He had an injury to his vocal chords in 1994, and toured in 1995 anyway, despite doctors saying he shouldn't... he still hasn't fully recovered his range, and has said that he didn't even feel really right until 2002.  That's 7 years just to feel like normal.

I'm not trying to be a huge scaremonger, I just want you to be mindful and to look after yourself.  It may mean a few extra weeks until you can play again, but if it means being able to keep playing for many more years to the best of your ability, surely that's a worthy tradeoff?
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.”

I appreciate the advice and I will definitely listen. I have been in some pain and havnt been playing, I just hope for a healthy recovery at this point.

Havnt heard of Dave hole but I really enjoyed it. Thanks for the share
You got this. Just allow yourself a full and healthy recovery. Determination and perseverance will accomplish great things. 

I've known people who accidentally chopped the tip of their finger off and went on to become phenomenal players. Myself my fret hand was broken in my youth and never healed quite the same. I didn't require surgery, but still. That said, Django Reinhardt could really get down and his hand was totally wacked up.

Hope it works out well for you.
Hi, ImDesigner,

I don't think you have too much to worry about, I have had a few students that had broken fingers, fractured their wrist etc..
Multiple times the students in question were questioning stopping guitar for a bit and resting, I advised against it.
Don't play through any pain, but a bit of practice daily will actually keep your joints, muscles, tendons & most importantly the bones active, playing the guitar can actually be more therapeutic for broken hands, tendon damage & muscular problems.
Quite often I have received good feedback from students therapists requesting more information on how I specifically teach the guitar and into how I advise practice.

Good luck!  
I appreciate all the kind advice. I've been playing guitar more and more as I'm more capable of it, things are getting easier and I'm happy to be back in front the amp. Still some pain and tightness but overall it was a quicker recovery than expected. Thanks to those and best wishes
This guy I know broke his arm when he was learning how to play which prevented him to reach his left hand under the neck. While his cast was on, he would play with his guitar on his lap and his hand "over" the neck and got so used to playing this way that he continues to this day.

He is actually one of the best guitar players I know, check him out - https://www.facebook.com/OverhandSam/ 

Good luck in your recovery
i almost break my hand few years ago and it was a few months without playing, ZERO. when i started to play again i noticed my hand was changed i couldn't play anymore with my previous position!!! it took me a couple of months to adapt my hand to another position.

Last injury is a frozen shoulder due to a motorbike crash and it have been another 4/5 months of stop, this time had to start play little by little during rehab because of the pain. i posted a few video about alternate picking i recorded while recovering. It is not nice when you have an injury but it can push you get the best out of you. Good luck
When I was little I broke my middle finger (in my left hand) because two dogs pushed me and I fell just on that finger. I just started playing back then and it was awful. I didn't get an actual good recovery and my finger is still bent, but I can still play and I have no major issues. The thing is that you will lose some practice, but technique will always be easy to recover.
Work harder, I believe in you.
Raw deal bud. Definitely resting is the best course of action

About 11 years ago (I was 19) I worked in a joinery factory, was buzzing some timber on a surface planer, it got caught and pulled my hand in, took about 4mm off my ring and middle finger on my fretting hand

Took about 2 years to get to playing with minimal pain, then for another 2 years the tips of my fingers were numb. Left and right hand syncing were hard as, not being able to feel the strings made it near impossible

Currently I have minor wrist issues, recently having a year off so I could actually play without any pain

Perserverance is the key I think, and lots of rest.