basses that promote injury?

Discussion in 'Basses [BG]' started by qsoxy, Aug 21, 2001.

  1. qsoxy


    May 4, 2001
    I've owned an Ibanez ergodyne for a while and recently two of my fretting hand fingertips have suddenly 'blown out'--pinched nerve or something--the pain is going away but I've had to take a week or two off playing. I know I should use a lighter touch, and I am now, but fear that my particular bass is bad on my fingers. A factor, I suspect, in addition to how I press the string down is the way that the string vibrates against the fretboard and my fingertip when I strike a note (a vibration that depends on the wood of the neck, plus the string, I guess). Question is: am I crazy, or this vibration better or worse depending on the bass/neck wood? What kind of wood, and/or bass brand are the easiest on the fingertips? Thanks for any info!!
  2. FalsehoodBass


    Jul 22, 2001
    Denver, CO
    i've never heard of this being a problem.. how low do you play your bass?... if its really low and you have to bend your fretting wrist a lot to reach around the neck, that could be a problem.
  3. Dave Castelo

    Dave Castelo

    Apr 19, 2000
    if they are called "ergodyne" the last thing you should have is a physical problem with it...

    i have never heard about ergodynes giving you problems like yours... maybe you should see a doctor and check your hands... also take a look at your technique and postures when playing...
  4. qsoxy


    May 4, 2001
    My wrist usually doesn't hurt, nor do my joints. When I'm fretting my wrist is straight with my fingers curved around. It's a problem with the fingertips, internally, perhaps where the flesh meets bone. Feels like achilles heel on my fingertip.
  5. Luis Fabara

    Luis Fabara

    Aug 13, 2000
    Ecuador (South America)
    Audio Pro - Ecuador
    Are you a Newbie?
    Its normal that your fingers hurt.
    Specially if you dont play with a pick.
    I have ripped my fingers a couple of times..
    Specially the Thumb where I slap, and my index finger where I pop.
  6. frederic b. hodshon

    frederic b. hodshon Supporting Member

    May 10, 2000
    Lake Forest, CA
    jeez, how hard are you people playing?

    the only time i popped a blood blister was when i was playing upright un-mic'd at an outdoor venue.

    light to medium touch gets you there.

    unless it for the theatrics...

    i've played for over 20 years without any hand pain.

    lucky? maybe...but, i think a lot of it is in technique.

  7. qsoxy


    May 4, 2001
    I've been playing for only half a year, but its not blisters, its some kind of internal pain such that I can't touch my fingertip to anything without intense pain.
  8. Bruce Lindfield

    Bruce Lindfield Unprofessional TalkBass Contributor Gold Supporting Member

    Well I would tend to go along with the others and say that it is nothing to do with the bass and sounds like either a technique problem or as you seem to be saying some inherent medical problem.

    It sounds like you should be seeing a doctor or a physiotherapist - I saw a physiotherapist in London for back problems - nothing to do with bass playing, but mentioned it in conversation and he was treating a lot of bass players for hand/wrist problems.
  9. Kubla Khan

    Kubla Khan

    Jan 29, 2001
    The Steinberger bass can be a very dangerous instrument. Nothing like a blunt sharp headless bass in your face, accidentally of course.

    Kubla Khan
  10. Bruce Lindfield

    Bruce Lindfield Unprofessional TalkBass Contributor Gold Supporting Member

    "blunt sharp" - make up your mind! - it can be one or the other - severe adjectival problems diagnosed here!!! ;)

    Did you actually read any of this apart from the title? :rolleyes:
  11. RAM


    May 10, 2000
    Chicago, IL
    I've never heard of a bass being bad for your fingers. Like Bruce said, it's probably something that's caused by an inherent medical condition or poor technique.

    The only problem I could forsee with a bass is if it were too heavy and created neck and back problems. That's more likely to happen.

    Another thing I've encountered a few times is a broken blood vessel in a finger. It's kind of painful but isn't caused by just happens.

    Talk to your doc.
  12. frederic b. hodshon

    frederic b. hodshon Supporting Member

    May 10, 2000
    Lake Forest, CA
    you could by a zon and make all your troubles go away.


  13. Tuomas


    Mar 14, 2000
    Helsinki, Finland
    This one might be a bit far off... but could it be because of nickel allergy? I mean, some people are really allergic to nickel and if it would somehow get in and under your skin if you do slides with those nickelplated-roundwound strings? I don't know if that's possible but it might cause pain.
  14. Mr. X

    Mr. X

    Mar 29, 2001
    The only bass, with which I ever had a problem, was a Thunderbird. I was told, that it was because of it being a neck heavy bass, my hand was trying to support the neck and finger it at the same time.
    This caused a strain on the ligaments in my fingers.
  15. mikemulcahy


    Jun 13, 2000
    The Abyss
    Take two tylenol and call me in the morning, That is a new one on me!!

  16. ok, do you press straight down on the strings? like, is your finger perpendicular to the string? i play guitar that way, but bass strings are too big for that, so i fret with my finger at a slight angle, pressing down with the slighty fleshier part, rather than the very top of my fingertip.
  17. What you seem to be talking about is you finding the resonant frequency of your finger when you pluck certain notes, or at least thats what it seems like to me. I don't think this is a problem.

    It's most likely technique on your part, or maybe a deficiency somewhere in your setup. Like your bass may have low, buzzy action, and you are pressing the strings real hard to get rid of the buzzes.

    Try using your thumb and middle finger of your left hand to squeeze the sides of your index, tell us if that hurts, or if its just on the finger tip.
  18. I have an Ergodyne, and I don't have that problem at all. If my hand hurts, it is always because I play too hard and my finger start to get a bit tender. I can get carried away when i do gigs :)

    I actually think the Ergodyne is one of the most comfortable basses around. It's light, sits well on my hip, and the neck is nice and small. That's just my opinion though.

    I would suggest that you analyse your technique. I think that is where the trouble might be coming from. It may help wearing your bass higher too. Mine sits on my hip, but if my fretting hand plays really close to the body of the bass, it isn't comfortable for that hand at all. However, that's my own fault for not having the bass sit up higher.
  19. my 2 cents, stop playing hard, relax, and enjoy.

    I played with a real loud guitar player and i plucked very hard to keep up. my wrists, hands, forearms and elbows got really beat up.

    I had to stop playing for 1/2 a year just so my limbs would works again. now i play with a light touch and when playing the DB i warm up my body and take it easy. first bit of stress i take a break.

    if you want to play for a life time you must think of the future and the damage you may have caused by the time you get there.