Does small hands player stuck ?

Discussion in 'Basses [BG]' started by wishforbass, Feb 25, 2018.

  1. gebass6

    gebass6 We're not all trying to play the same music. Supporting Member

    No pain at all!
    I can reach six inches without stretching.A minor third interval.
    How wide can you spread your hand out?
    Without straining or stretching?
    Last edited: Feb 26, 2018
  2. JACink


    Mar 9, 2011
    As a picture is worth a thousand words...

    My hands are too small:


    And an excuse that I have used plenty when playing Ukulele (or even guitar), "My hands are too big!":


    (BTW, that makes this post 2042 words long, but who's counting? ;) )
  3. pablotries


    Feb 2, 2018
    Costa Rica
    I've accepted that there's things I'm physically unable to do with smaller hands, but most of them are rarely things that I feel are making me a less-than-adequate bass player. You adapt to your limitations and I really wouldn't worry too much.
  4. EatS1stBassist


    Apr 15, 2016
    So cal
    How did you get a picture of you holding my hand?
    Bassbeater likes this.
  5. arbiterusa


    Sep 24, 2015
    A good friend of mine was 5 foot 2 and had tiny hands. He had zero problems playing bass. My hands are about half the size of my guitar player's, and neither one of us has any issues. Just play more.
  6. I wouldn't worry unless your trying to become a jazz bassist. I just hop around. I can play as fast as steve harris and only hobbits have shorter fingers than me. It's more about agility.
  7. pcake

    pcake Supporting Member

    Sep 20, 2011
    Los Angeleez
    toowrongfoo likes this.
  8. joenoone


    Mar 21, 2009
    Clermont, FL
    Yea, play an upright bass and then you'll understand "small hands". That scale is much larger than an electric bass (3/4 size is 42" scale versus electric at 34") and the playing technique is different. That doesn't mean upright bass players suck, it just means they adapted to the large scale. As the adage goes, "it's a poor musician who blames his instrument". :D
    Bassbeater, wishforbass and gebass6 like this.
  9. Bassbeater

    Bassbeater Guest

    Sep 9, 2001
    "It's a poor person with an instrument to blame; the musician."
  10. Curley Shadow

    Curley Shadow

    Oct 16, 2009
    In all fairness there are some crappy instruments as a former public school orchestra director, the poor instruments were often the main reason kids dropped out
    joenoone and EatS1stBassist like this.
  11. Ric5

    Ric5 Supporting Member

    Jan 29, 2008
    I disclose nothing
  12. inanimate_carb


    Aug 11, 2016
    No. Players overcome all sorts of physical impediments and become very accomplished anyway. Marcus Miller is deaf in his right ear and it hasn’t seemed to slow him down.
  13. Gringo Basso

    Gringo Basso

    Aug 26, 2016
    My guitar/bass teacher had me do some Marquis de Sade stretching exercises and that got rid of my "little-finger" blues. It's remarkable what your fingers will do if you work your ass off to stretch them and play a LOT. There are no excused for little hands.....and that particular a lie!
    Bassbeater and EatS1stBassist like this.
  14. wishforbass


    Jun 23, 2016
    5 inch with normal stretch
    gebass6 likes this.
  15. vegas532


    Nov 10, 2006
    Pensacola, FL.
    I have congenital hand and limb deformities and I've played everything from an Ibanez to the now infamous 24-string Godzilla. You just adapt to what you get your hands on, they're ultimately just tools.

  16. Tommyc


    Nov 11, 2015
    Do small hands matter? Well because the classical guitar is played as a polyphonic instrument i.e. basses held on frets and lines played above, the stretches on electric bass are not really that bad in comparison. The photo uploaded of the late, great French guitarist, Ida Presti demonstrates her remarkable flexibility despite being all of about 5 2". Dexterity trumps large in playing an instrument. Any instrument. ida_presti2.jpg
  17. gebass6

    gebass6 We're not all trying to play the same music. Supporting Member

    A bit off topic.
    There are those that say "Don't stretch!It's bad for bassists!"
    So why is it OK for a guitarist and pianist to stretch?
    Last edited: Feb 26, 2018
    Bassbeater likes this.
  18. Tommyc


    Nov 11, 2015
    It's ok because it's necessary. If your guitar score has a low g ringing through the whole measure, then it's ringing through the whole measure and you have to hold it. I used a book written by the late classical guitar teacher, Aaron Shearer that gave a regimen of exercises to increase stretch lengthwise on the fingerboard and width wise. These were systematic and had to be approached over time and only for a short time per day.
  19. wishforbass


    Jun 23, 2016
    I'm against stretch and use a lot of shift and I'm fully ok and can play list of basses expect five string deluxe jazz bass because neck is too wide for me and it's on uncomfortable lvl.
    Last edited: Feb 26, 2018
    gebass6 likes this.
  20. Bassbeater

    Bassbeater Guest

    Sep 9, 2001
    Well... truth be told, I have giant tropical spider hands. I can palm catch a basketball, but I still use shifting, mittening and extreme hand contortion depending on the riff. I have to vary the approach to avoid cramping or fatigue. -for one song finger origami, the next song, a mitten break. Small hands might change the way I play, but it wouldn't make me worse I don't think.
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    Primary TB Assistant

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