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Alternating finger plucking and fret hand pain!

Discussion in 'Technique [BG]' started by progrmr, Sep 21, 2008.


  1. progrmr

    progrmr

    Sep 3, 2008
    Columbus, Ohio
    I'm a newb to the bass and so I'm really starting at ground zero.

    2 things:

    1. I noticed that I wasn't really paying attention to my plucking fingers and proper alternating. When I paid attention to what I was doing for the 1-2-3-4...on each string warmup exercise I was NOT doing proper alternating at all. Even though what I was doing felt natural, it was not proper technique IMO.

    So basically I stopped doing anything during my practice (about 30-45 daily) other than the 4 frets up and down, advancing 1 fret per cycle until I hit the 10th fret. Is this what I should be doing? Stopping anything else until I correctly alternate each plucking finger correctly? I think it is but thought I'd get some opinions.

    2. I'm getting some fret hand pain after about 30 minutes of this - kind of at the base of my thumb which sits on the neck. I'm not wearing a strap when I practice, just sitting on a comfortable chair that doesn't have arms. I notice the neck is about parallel with the ground. Is this the correct position? I'm thinking that maybe I need to bring the headstock up a bit.

    Any recommendations?
     
  2. KOOSEE

    KOOSEE

    Jul 15, 2008
    southern CA
    For your thumb pain you just need to relax. You are tensing up causing your thumb to put more pressure on the neck. I had the same problem too, when I first started playing chords.
     
  3. i had the same thumb problem just let your thumb rest dont squeeze the neck really hard, plus if your new to bass your hands will take time to ajust to the neck dimentions etc. As for your plucking there is no wrong way to pluck what ever works for you.
     
  4. Its a good start and a good part of your practice regime. If you really want to build independance then practice permutations on your fretting hand while sticking to strict 1-2 alteration with your plucking hand.

    For example: Using your fretting hand:

    1-2-3-4
    1-2-4-3
    1-3-2-4
    1-3-4-2
    1-4-2-3
    1-4-3-2

    Then...

    2-1-3-4
    2-1-4-3
    2-3-1-4
    2-3-4-1
    2-4-1-3
    2-4-3-1

    Then....

    3-1-2-4 etc

    etc.

    after a couple of days of doing this, you will be flying all over the fretboard with very little difficulty!

    - Andrew
     
  5. progrmr

    progrmr

    Sep 3, 2008
    Columbus, Ohio
    ^^ This is GREAT advice - I found and printed a full list of all the possible permutations and started doing them tonight. Very good exercises, and fun too! Especially for beginners working on their technique before trying to attack any songs.
     
  6. Lemmno how it works out for you!



    - Andrew
     
  7. yes, use the strap... set it up so that the bass is in the same position when sat down that you play it in when stood up... and that means that it should be above waist level when standing...

    If you have the strap on, then your left hand isn't trying to support the bass and you can press lightly with your thumb...
     

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