avoiding hand problems

Ergonomics and Posture for Classical Guitarists, Aches and Pains, Injuries, etc...
ice 9

avoiding hand problems

Post by ice 9 » Sun Sep 17, 2006 5:03 pm

is there anything you do or reccomend to aviod tendonitis, carple tunnel etc...

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Vesuvio
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Location: Northern England

Post by Vesuvio » Sun Sep 17, 2006 6:43 pm

Check your posture, have someone else check your posture, respond to discomfort, remember to rest, discriminate between tiredness and pain and if there's pain—stop and find out what's wrong before you attempt to continue. Best wishes, V.

PS I may have already mentioned this to you, I tell everyone to read "The Natural Classical Guitar" by Lee Ryan ISBN 0-933224-50-8.

Azalais

Post by Azalais » Sun Sep 17, 2006 7:28 pm

Don't underestimate the importance of your sitting position. If you can only afford a few lessons, spend the time you have with your teacher making absolutely certain that your posture and hands are not straining or adding extra effort to your playing. Stop often, stretch out and recheck your position.

Stretch out and warm up before you play. If you are prone to aches and pains or have chronic injuries, this becomes even more important. Warm your hands and back muscles before a long practice session (? a hot bath or shower, soak your hands briefly in hot water, stretching and flexing them to get warmed up before you play.)

DON'T IGNORE PAIN. It sounds so obvious, but we get focused on our playing, ignore the fact we're not sitting up straight, and become determined to keep going... we ignore the cramps developing in our lower and upper backs and arms, the little pains in the back of the hands, the aches in the fingers... we push for an extra fifteen minutes, half an hour or an hour... and the damage is done... The next day you the start the process over again, and in short order the muscle spasms have become chronic, the joints and tendons have been damaged. It takes much longer to recover from these injuries than it does to prevent them.

Playing an instrument, especially in the beginning, is far more athletic than it appears to be. Each new piece we try to learn adds new challenges... longer stretches, more intricate hand positions, more speed and repetitive movements. Remembering to keep your body, hands and fingers (and LH thumb) RELAXED, especially when your brain is struggling to decypher a difficult passage, is probably the hardest task.

If you're having difficulty with string squeaks, fast shifts and poor tone.... chances are that you are ignoring a key element: remembering that playing is a sequence of pressure and RELEASE of pressure. We think of LIFTING fingers as part of the effort, but if you try to lift without consciously releasing the tension first, you are making the task twice as difficult as it needs to be... (If you forget to take your foot off the brakes, before long they will overheat and fail. ) Remember to stay consciously relaxed when you play... and never ignore pain.

amrouche

Post by amrouche » Thu Sep 21, 2006 10:38 am

hay..
listen...i m a medical studient..i believe that.the cause of the damage of the tendon is thier constant sliding aginst the (retinacula)a tunnel of fibers in the base of your hand....witch cause the sheath around this tendon that makes that mission easy..just get fatigue...so the solution of that is to keep your tendon straight from the place from where they immerge...and thee area where they insert on the bone....when you play try to keep a straight line between your elbow and and your rest and your index
and you're supposed not to flex your rest(so your hand become more close to your forarm)but i do flex it sometimes!......and the most important thing is to just keep your self confortbale

i hope that i ve giving you a hand
sheers :D

jimmispoons

Post by jimmispoons » Thu Sep 21, 2006 1:43 pm

Azalais wrote:
...Remembering to keep your body, hands and fingers (and LH thumb) RELAXED, especially when your brain is struggling to decypher a difficult passage, is probably the hardest task.
- This is so true, and it is something I constantly struggle with. It is so easy to loose sight of the fact that there is a direct correlation between your level of concentration (which increases with a new or unfamiliar pieces) and your grim determination to carry on until it is correct, regardless of the pain.

When a piece is memorised it tends to be more natural to me and my touch lightens considerably... as does the stress on my wrists.
Azalais wrote:
...playing is a sequence of pressure and RELEASE of pressure. We think of LIFTING fingers as part of the effort, but if you try to lift without consciously releasing the tension first, you are making the task twice as difficult as it needs to be...
- I have never thought of playing like this, but of course it is absolubtely spot on - this has actually changed my perception slightly, thankyou Azalais.

Anyway my advice, Warm up thouroughly with some good exercises, take frequent breaks and try to be mindful of the first point above at all times...

For me personally, this is what causes me to slip and tire myself, physically when playing.

J.

jorroser

Post by jorroser » Fri Sep 22, 2006 3:20 am

Hi.
If you are felling pain, slow down. Do not over exercise. As someone in the other answers told you, palying an instrument has much of atlhetics.
You may consult a physician, some problems like carpal tunnel syndrome are associated with thyroid diseases.

sV_cheats 1

Post by sV_cheats 1 » Fri Sep 22, 2006 3:35 am

I just recently had tremendous wrist problems. I had both tendonitis and carpel tunnel. There are quite a few things you can do. Keep checking your hand posture. Your wrist should be fairly strait, if not completely strait. Don't over do it (especially with bad technique). If something hurts, put it down for a while. I know it may be painful at the time, but it beats paying for an ijury over weeks and months. Don't stress your hand out. Eliminate anything that isn't necessary in pieces that puts additional stress on the wrist. If things do start getting bad, invest in a hand restraint (in any drug store) and wear it at night, or during the day if you need to.

Hope this helps!

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