#1
Ok my pinky has a mind of its own and it angers me.

Basically when playing songs like crazy train, or panteras cemetary gates, I noticed that whenever I push down on a fret wiht my middle finger, my pinky has a habbit of going up, away from the keyboard, and when I push down with my ring finger, my pinky goes down a little...

Its frustrating and whenver I play those songs I focus on trying to keep it right above the fret board, but its hard!!

I know a lot of people have problem using there pinky, ive been playing 6 or 7 months and i started playing without my pinky, and its a really nasty habbit.

Im just curious on methods everyone here used to stop this
#2
It's not the problem so much with your pinky being curled up a little bit.. but more of the fact that your not using it. You NEED to get used to chromatics, using all 4 fingers. 1-2-3-4 up and down the fretboard. Example) if your playing a riff - fret 5-6-7-8.. then use your index for fret 5, middle for fret 6, ring for fret 7, and PINKY for fret 8. Alot of people get addicted to using their ring finger for these things, especially bends.. where a pinky should be used.
Quote by Overlord
It's not hard to be nice, but it's nice to be hard
#3
It's sympathetic tension. You have to focus playing the notes slowly enough so
that you can keep your pinky relaxed and over the fretboard in case it will be
needed for the next note. When it curls up or straightens out in tension, it will
hurt your playing ability.

Practice slowly walking the fretboard 1-2, 1-2, 1-2,.... and 1-3, 1-3, 1-3, ... while
keeping your pinky hovering over it's own fret.
#4
Quote by Carnivean
It's not the problem so much with your pinky being curled up a little bit.. but more of the fact that your not using it. You NEED to get used to chromatics, using all 4 fingers. 1-2-3-4 up and down the fretboard. Example) if your playing a riff - fret 5-6-7-8.. then use your index for fret 5, middle for fret 6, ring for fret 7, and PINKY for fret 8. Alot of people get addicted to using their ring finger for these things, especially bends.. where a pinky should be used.


That's not bad advice, but normally... someone with a pinky problem who thinks mindlessly doing 1-2-3-4 excercises every day is going to solve their problem, is well...dissapointed after a couple of months that still, they're pinky gets an erection everytime it sees another finger. While doing chromatic excercises like that is a good idea, they should really only be done with complete awareness and concentration of what you're doing and what you're aiming for, else the results are non-existant or negative.

It's important to be aware and conscious of what each individual finger is doing when you're trying to correct something like that, but it's equally important to be aware and conscious of what every other muscle in your arm is doing at the same time. From what I've found, it's usually excess pressure from the thumb and forearm that pushes the pinky up, indirectly. Too much pressure from the thumb & forearm = more stress on the fingers = tensing hand when fretting = pinky erection. Try completely relaxing your fretting hand with your thumb only touching the back of the neck, and ALL other counter-pressure coming from your whole arm relaxing into your body.

Then, try some excercises using your pinky with complete mental awareness and concentration without having to worry about anything else but your fingers. Try some walking excercises with your pinky hovering over it's respective fret, while the other fingers are doing their job. That one works well.

It's a lot of work to mend something like that, especially if you've been playing like that for any length of time... but effort in = results out, and believe, it's worth it.

Edit: Damn, sorry Ed.
#5
yea ive been doing 1-2-3-4 across all 6 strings, and then going 5-4-3-2 across all strings. But I have never noticed my pinky until I learned crazy train, and watched an online video on youtube.com with some guy playing it.

I was like...wow his fingers dont look like they move at all, just like little twiches, where as mine looks like a spider trying to run for its damn life.

but the past couple days I have been putitng a lot of effort into it. The past week ive been working on memorizing notes on the fretboard, and my pinky. I wish someone pointed this out to me sooner ><
#6
My pinky is double jointed, so it's nearly impossible for me to keep it from flying off into orbit when it's not on the fretboard.
#7
Do the 1-2-3-4 thing with hammerons and pulloffs so it's 1h2h3h4 and 5p4p3p2 etc. Make sure you're getting a strong, big sound of up each note. This also helps your legato. Do a 1-2-3 excersise like the 1-2-3-4 excercise but only use your 2nd, 3rd and 4th finger. Finally, practice the same excercise only using your 3rd and 4th finger.
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#9
Quote by Johnljones7443
they're pinky gets an erection everytime it sees another finger


LOL!!! Well stated!!!

My fingers used to do this alot when I first started out. The problem is, when you start playing guitar, for about the first half year, your fingers are actually quite weak. Most people don't think about exercising their individual fingers before they start to play, and guitar will build muscle in there.

I would recommend doing chromatics. Some people don't realize it, but in parts of your body like your fingers, building muscle will make it so you have control over it, and it won't have a "mind of its own." Chromatics are also a great way to train your fingers to move one after the other. I still have problems with it, because i'm used to the Major or Minor scales, where you're putting the index/middle/pinky or index/ring/pinky down. My fingers get used to that pattern sometimes, and it's hard to break it. Chromatics have helped me get over that somewhat, while building muscle as well.

Try chromatics, and after a week of 10 minutes of chromatics a day (I know it sounds like alot, if I do chromatics I almost throw up from the cordination it requires) try those songs again. I'd be surprised if you didn't improve.
#10
Oh God! I suck! I've been not using my pinky for nearly a year! IS there any hope!????
I will join the fight for Independence Day - Pinky style!