HomeForumsLesson Support[Lesson 2 Help]Wrist arch pain w/ Am scales

This topic contains 34 replies, has 8 voices, and was last updated by  safetyblitz 2 months ago.

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  • #21817

    DanzoStrife
    Participant

    Hey guys,
    I’m having getting my wrist in good position when I have to use my pinky to reach and fret the 6th string. I have to bend my wrist inward and after 10 minutes of doing the lesson 2 Am Pentatonic scales, I’m very much in pain and I have to stop. If i flatten my wrist, I can only get my pinky to the 3rd or 4th string.

    The outside of my wrist takes several hours to return to a normal, functioning state. My fingers aren’t bothering me tho, thank God.

    Pic:

    View post on imgur.com

    Attachments:
    1. neck.jpg

  • #21818

    Sarah Spisak
    Keymaster

    Can you bring the neck of the guitar closer to your body?  It looks as if if might be too far away.  🙂

  • #21819

    superblonde
    Keymaster

    Hm, your thumb has to move.. what happens if you play with your thumb kind of poking over the neck?

    I'm an intermediate student of Metal Method. I play seitannic heavy metal. All Kale Seitan! The glutens will be eaten with relish!
    And on the Seventh Day, Mustaine said: ∇ ⨯ E = - ∂B / ∂t ; and there was Thrash; and it had a ♭3; and it was good.

  • #21820

    DanzoStrife
    Participant

    Sarah: I was told my guitar is too high (most players put it down their stomach or even knees) so should I lower the guitar strap and raise the neck more vertical?
    I have the strap on the shortest setting.

    Superblonde: Same as flattening the wrist. If I move my thumb up, the pinky has to go down . The higher the pinky, the lower the thumb and visa versa.

    This is really a problem on the 6th string with the pinky, otherwise if I use my longer ring finger I can flatten my wrist more, but then I can’t reach the 8th fret since the pinky is supposed to be used when u go from 5th fret first finger to 8th fret pinky on the scale . The ring finger is used for the 7th fret.

  • #21823

    Sarah Spisak
    Keymaster

    Can you reduce the distance indicated in red here?

  • #21824

    DanzoStrife
    Participant

    Ok you mean like this?

    It works a lot better for the Am scale, but I have trouble playing anything else now or finding my way around the first 4 strings lol. I have to relearn how to play since I can’t really see what I’m doing. I guess I could position it the other way and when I reach the 6th string pinky position to pull it back? IS that the way you’re supposed to do it? Constantly re position the guitar?

    View post on imgur.com

  • #21825

    Sarah Spisak
    Keymaster

    Hmmm… That’s doesn’t look right!  It’s normal to move around a little bit.  Have you studied images of other players?  I don’t recommend putting the guitar down by your knees, though.

  • #21826

    DanzoStrife
    Participant

    So my second image still doesn’t look right? huh. Oh man. I don’t know then. Well, yea whenever I see other guitar players they put their guitar really low. I can’t mimic this if I do most of my practice sitting down.

    I’m using my progress thread as a place to post my covers and such. This is how I normally play. Is my positioning real bad here too?
    I’ll be posting the rest of my vids there fyi.

  • #21827

    safetyblitz
    Participant

    A few suggestions offhand (don’t know whether this matches “Metal Method” Gospel or not…)

    1) Rotate the strap around your torso a bit so the headstock is pointing more toward the ceiling (depending on how the weight of the particular guitar is distributed, it may have a tendency to not want to stay there though. In an old thread, someone suggested taping some “fishing weights” inside the cavity of the guitar body to compensate for a neck-heavy guitar)

    2) If you are doing classical-inspired “thumb near the middle of the back of the neck” technique near the nut, let the elbow of your fretting arm move away from your ribcage a bit to help the side-to-side “deviation” angle of the wrist stay more straight when you are fretting stuff near the nut.

    3) When doing classical-thumb-behind neck, you usually want the thumb aligned roughly behind the middle finger, though there’s some wiggle room in either direction (nut direction or bridge direction) depending on the quirks of your own anatomy.

  • #21829

    superblonde
    Keymaster

    Maybe you could compare to how the angles are when you play sitting down (sitting properly, not slouched, and with strap tight). Basically you want the standing up position to be the same as playing sitting down. Thats what I’ve assumed.

    I'm an intermediate student of Metal Method. I play seitannic heavy metal. All Kale Seitan! The glutens will be eaten with relish!
    And on the Seventh Day, Mustaine said: ∇ ⨯ E = - ∂B / ∂t ; and there was Thrash; and it had a ♭3; and it was good.

  • #21830

    MotleyCrue81
    Participant

    It may just be that your hand is too tense because of the position. If so, just be aware of it when playing and when you feel it, just stop and shake your hand out a little and focus on keeping things loose.

    If it’s not that, then you just gotta experiment with different positions and what hurts and what feels fine. So try different and angles, wrist angles, thumb positions behind the neck, strap length, etc. Everyone’s different so hand position will be different from person to person.

    Bring hair metal back!

  • #21831

    superblonde
    Keymaster

    One thing is for sure, if it hurts after 10 mins, something is totally off. It should be possible to practice the scale patterns for hours and hours at a time, if you really wanted to, assuming you could somehow survive the boredom, without ill effects.. other than some fingertip soreness.

    I'm an intermediate student of Metal Method. I play seitannic heavy metal. All Kale Seitan! The glutens will be eaten with relish!
    And on the Seventh Day, Mustaine said: ∇ ⨯ E = - ∂B / ∂t ; and there was Thrash; and it had a ♭3; and it was good.

  • #21833

    Sarah Spisak
    Keymaster

    assuming you could somehow survive the boredom…

    Boredom?  😉

  • #21835

    DanzoStrife
    Participant

    You mean like this?

    Actually, most of the time, Kirk hammet has it pretty parallel to the floor
    like this
    http://www.guitarworld.com/artist-news/kirk-hammett-300-riffs-i-lost-my-cellphone-probably-werent-good-after-all/30516

    http://www3.pictures.zimbio.com/gi/Kirk+Hammett+2013+Orion+Music+More+Festival+QkopRVmowq2l.jpg

    Either way, I don’t see how either position helps him get his pinky on the 6th string

    Do u guys have pictures of using your pinky on the 6th string hand position?  All of your descriptions are nice, and I thank you guys but I’m not getting it.

  • #21837

    superblonde
    Keymaster

    Here’s what I assume you’re doing. To play the lower strings you are reaching under the neck and trying to attack the frets from the front, which means your wrist has to bend all the way around. Dont do that. For me when I play a scale, my hand moves perpendicular to the neck, when I’m playing high E my thumb is really more behind the neck near the high E string, and my palm is quite a ways away from the neck, then as I move to play the lower strings my thumb moves up towards my shoulder and my palm moves to contact the bottom of the neck. By the time I hit the 6th string my thumb is on the neck behind the 6th string and my palm is touching the bottom edge of the neck (exaggerating a little bit). The trick is, the finger joint nearest the tip still needs to be bent, to play the note with the tip of the finger. Anyways, I can say 100% that my wrist does not really change angle from high E to low E. What happens is that my palm starts out far away then gets very close to the neck. Also thru various practicing I’ve spent some time trying all kinds of different contortions to see what works best and the angles continued to refine as I got faster and cleaner. I experimented with all kinds of things, like, doing scales without my thumb on the neck at all, to learn different fretting pressure, playing classical position, purposely playing with my elbow way stuck out, etc etc.. there’s no right answer because people with different body dimensions will play slightly differently..

    I'm an intermediate student of Metal Method. I play seitannic heavy metal. All Kale Seitan! The glutens will be eaten with relish!
    And on the Seventh Day, Mustaine said: ∇ ⨯ E = - ∂B / ∂t ; and there was Thrash; and it had a ♭3; and it was good.

  • #21838

    rightonthemark
    Participant

    check out randy rhoads.

    while his guitars hangs low he also has the neck pointing upward to make it easier on his fret hand.

  • #21839

    safetyblitz
    Participant

    Those Randy Rhoads pictures are great examples. Note that you don’t have to hang the guitar super low to get that effect, it’s largley about how you orient the strap around your body.

    Truly parallel to the floor is a bad idea. It forces your left arm to work a lot harder to reach where it needs to reach. Note that when Michael Angelo Batio plays seated, he has the guitar in “classical” position with the bottom contour of the guitar resting against his left leg, rather than the typical “bedroom guitarist” pose with the guitar over the right leg:

    Some more examples:

    Even though Slash has his hips turned in this picture, this is a good example of a good neck angle that’s not quite as ambitious as Randy’s:

    Marty Friedman:

     

  • #21840

    safetyblitz
    Participant

    Here’s a great example that applies to your exact situation.

    Note how Marty Friedman has let the elbow of his fretting arm move away from his torso to ease the sideways angle of his wrist:

  • #21841

    safetyblitz
    Participant

    Either way, I don’t see how either position helps him get his pinky on the 6th string

    The reason the “headstock pointed to the sky” thing helps is because of how it affects the rotation of your forearm.

    Essentially, when the guitar is in a “parallel to the floor” position, your forearm is rotated in the conventional “palm toward the ceiling” direction about as far as it can go. That means there’s no more “slack” left in the rotational range of motion of your forearm in that direction to help your pinky reach further toward the low E string. You are already rotated as far as you can go.

    In contrast, with the headstock pointed more the the ceiling, your forearm’s rotation is closer to a neutral “thumbs up” position, so there is still some “spare” range of motion to rotate further in the “palm to the ceiling” direction if you need to do so to help your pinky reach further toward the low E string.

  • #21842

    safetyblitz
    Participant

    For the most part, I think the main fix for your problem is letting your left elbow move outward as in the 2nd Marty Friedman pic I posted.

    The other angle to think about is how much are you pointing the neck “forward” instead of “sideways”? If you are resting the guitar body more against your right hip than directly in front of you, then you will be pointing the neck more “forward” instead of straight to your left. The more you are pointing it forward, the more you are forcing your left wrist to contort to get your fingers into position.

  • #21846

    bdickens
    Participant

    I can’t really see the pictures very well, but it looks like you might have your wrist bent at too sharp an angle. You actually want it pretty close to straight; you get a much stronger grip with a lot less stress and fatigue that way.

     

    Hold your wrist out straight and make a fist. Now curl your wrist inwards. Feel the difference?

     

    You also might be squeezing too hard with your hand. That will cause strain by itself, not to mention exacerbate any wrist positioning issues. Pull back with your arm instead.

     

    Emulating the way this that or the other guitar hero holds his guitar is hit or miss. Everyone’s body different. What works for someone else might not work for you. Besides, even though someone is a hotshot shredder, he still might not be holding his instrument in the most efficient manner.

     

    What you want to do is adjust the guitar to fit YOU, not force yourself to adjust to it. The classical position is probably the best to emulate; it is the product of much study and refinement over a long period of time and is very ergonomic

    Byron Dickens

  • #21851

    DanzoStrife
    Participant

    Ok guys, I asked another guitar teacher and he said it in very few words.
    My hands fingertips were pointing towards the NUT diagonally and which is making my wrist twisted and pointed outside.


    Most of time , I need to move my palm facing somewhat inward towards my rightside and at the worst, fingertips parallel pointing towards the SIDE DOTS of the neck.

    I drew this and this is what he means:
    despite the guitar height, what leg I put it on, this was wrong , so it made all of that moot

    View post on imgur.com

    Anyways, now it feels A LOT better. I was trying to twist my hand to get my pinky to reach, but I find I can arch my wrist all the way to do that without pain. The pain comes from doing BOTH arching AND twisting .

  • #21856

    safetyblitz
    Participant

    My hands fingertips were pointing towards the NUT diagonally and which is making my wrist twisted and pointed outside.

    You still need to think about how your overall arm position is affecting the angle of your wrist. I’d argue that what’s happening with your fingers is largely a *SYMPTOM* of your arm position.

  • #21857

    DanzoStrife
    Participant

    Safetyblitz: yes of course! Let me rephrase that. Despite me changing hand and leg positions, I still had my hand pointed the wrong direction. Getting the headstock more vertical and my elbow pointed outward is most helpful 🙂

  • #21860

    bdickens
    Participant

    Good to hear you are getting this figured out.

    Byron Dickens

  • #21880

    DanzoStrife
    Participant

    Wow, the pain has taken almost 24 hours to get rid of. Now that it’s gone, I can finally practice again. I really want to make sure all of my postures are correct. When you’re a dumb teen, you will gloss over this stuff and not get it right. That’s a big reason why I quit back then. I literally learned two chords and that was that.

    I’m here for the long haul, u know like forever? It’s nice of you guys to support me 🙂
    (no internet existed during teen years)

  • #21886

    JL8112
    Participant

    Hey DanzoStrife I know Im late but that guitar teacher is right. For the most part your fingers should be almost parrelel to the frets. I too suffer from a wrist injury so I can relate to you, but keeping your fingers parrel tp the frets will help.

  • #21887

    JL8112
    Participant

    Check out Dougs hand positioning in his videos

    • #21888

      superblonde
      Keymaster

      Doug does a bunch of detail and neck and thumb closeups for this in what is currently week 31 ‘speed exercises’ just fyi.

      I'm an intermediate student of Metal Method. I play seitannic heavy metal. All Kale Seitan! The glutens will be eaten with relish!
      And on the Seventh Day, Mustaine said: ∇ ⨯ E = - ∂B / ∂t ; and there was Thrash; and it had a ♭3; and it was good.

  • #21892

    DanzoStrife
    Participant

    Lol? Week 31? I have only purchased up to week 17. I’m on week 3/4 right now too >.>
    Fingering position is too basic to wait that long to learn man.

    Anyways, I’ll tell u how i developed this bad habit . LOOK AT THIS PIC. You see how horizontal her guitar is to the floor, yet shes TWISTING her arm during a barre chord? If you do a barre chord like that, u need to change positions to raise the headstock to the sky. This is NOT Doug Marks or MM quality man .
    God It hurts watching that arm twist. I did a trial for this and will never pay for this crap

    Guitartricks.com is overall pretty bad. I don’t recommend them, even if u ignored this blip
    Also, Licklibrary has no written material and they play all the cover songs very wrong compared to the source. They don’t show u fingering, technique. They just play through it and expect u to learn. A lot of stuff is out there, but it’s not good. Thank God for this site!

  • #21894

    superblonde
    Keymaster

    Yea I agree about those other sites. I checked out dozens of different lesson places/dvd’s before seeing that metal method is clearly the best quality. Hah, try to learn anything from Malmsteen’s original shred video..

    I also agree with the finger angle to the frets, the thing that always got me was, so many very fast guitarists don’t play like that (and its not because they’ve changed their grip for vibrato or bend). Scroll back up to kirk hammet’s photo, his fingers are clearly not angled to the frets in what is the “correct way” yet hammet obviously is very very fast and clean. That Pete Thorn video I recently posted where he teaches one of his solos, he’s the same way, his fingers are totally angled while he is doing licks and legato (again not doing vibrato). It’s really strange. Paul Gilbert too. I guess somehow they became flexible enough that it isn’t a problem for them, I dunno. Or maybe they were the fortunate few with correct body dimensions so that it doesnt matter or their joints coincidentally line up? Who knows but they sure didn’t throw the guitar in the closet because of aches and pains in their early days, so they must have had some luck somehow.

    I'm an intermediate student of Metal Method. I play seitannic heavy metal. All Kale Seitan! The glutens will be eaten with relish!
    And on the Seventh Day, Mustaine said: ∇ ⨯ E = - ∂B / ∂t ; and there was Thrash; and it had a ♭3; and it was good.

  • #21895

    DanzoStrife
    Participant

    ^ The Hammet one is towards the bridge, which is good. So I observed that u can either have your palms towards the bridge or tips parallel to side of the neck, just not towards the nut unless you have flexible anatomy like u suggest.

    I know this is the reason why they invented the curved curl bar for biceps. For me, using the straight bar hurts a lot, and I can’t progress in weight. Arnold recommended using the curved curl bar as your palms point towards each other a bit.

    For me, I need to be extra careful. Even after quitting a certain job, I had carpal tunnel syndrome almost my entire life aftewards (17 yrs)

  • #21897

    safetyblitz
    Participant

    Doug does a bunch of detail and neck and thumb closeups for this in what is currently week 31 ‘speed exercises’ just fyi.

    [long loud movie-trailer-style record scratch noise]

    Hang on. Am I hearing this correctly? Pardon my ignorance, because I don’t own any of Doug’s courses. Does the basic course really not cover hand position until week 31???

    • #21901

      superblonde
      Keymaster

      LOL slow down there, no pun intended, week 31 is in the context of speed. Tho I agree the early weeks could include more “thumb-cam” especially for the open chords.

      Re-watch Week 1 at 14:34. “The angle of your fretting fingers should look like this” .. Doug demos and says “hold your hand like this.. NOT like this” and then at 15:00 about the elbow and 15:30 about the position of the thumb. Altho it’s interesting that Danzo had the 3rd way not demo’ed with palm facing to the nut to stretch with his pinky according to his previous diagram.. At week 1 17:28 there’s a demo on the classical position.. at 18:00 Doug demos “keep wrist as flat as possible” and strap length.. pulling back on neck.. etc. All this stuff is covered really quick to get to playing smoke on the water.. Week 1 needs a lot of close watching to get it all, maybe even rewinding. Oh yea at 19:30 there’s a demo of what could be called, one-finger-to-a-fret “do this, not this (wild flailing fingers)”

      The thing about the weekly videos is that, there is a ton of info given each week in only the 15-20 min video. So to me it really was not “watch this week’s lesson then move on to the next week”. I still go back in time frequently to watch previous weeks and I am still learning more details. Especially those early weeks, the quantity of info is very high. I think this is a good example of this, maybe re-reviewing Week 1 could have helped Danzo a lot. So that’s what Id suggest in general for all – periodically go back and re-watch.

      My favorite part of Week 1: “one thing though, if you’re standing with your strap up like this, you’re gonna look a bit like a dork so gradually lower it over time.” Haha.

      I'm an intermediate student of Metal Method. I play seitannic heavy metal. All Kale Seitan! The glutens will be eaten with relish!
      And on the Seventh Day, Mustaine said: ∇ ⨯ E = - ∂B / ∂t ; and there was Thrash; and it had a ♭3; and it was good.

  • #21902

    safetyblitz
    Participant

    Re-watch Week 1 at 14:34.

    Glad to hear. If this is something that came up as part of the course revision threads, I had forgotten it.

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