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Forearm Carpal Tunnel, Playing In Sitting Position

Discussion in 'Basses [BG]' started by mrjim123, Sep 3, 2008.

  1. mrjim123

    mrjim123 Supporting Member

    May 17, 2008
    I bought a new G&L Tribute L-2000 a week ago. I have been learning new songs from CDs, so I've been mostly sitting down while playing.

    About an hour ago I was playing (sitting down) and I noticed my technique was going to hell. I finally figured out that the inside of my right (picking hand) forearm was getting numb from resting it on the bass. It still hurts and feels a little numb, classic carpal tunnel, I would say.

    I am playing live with an acoustic guitarist and percussionist this weekend. Both sit while playing, so I kind of hate to play standing up.

    So, I'm looking for some way to alleviate the pressure on my forearm while playing sitting down. This never happened with my old bass (Gibson Ripper) - bigger body, so a different pressure point I guess.

    Any ideas?

    (Also posted in Technique forum. I saw nothing in FAQ about cross posting - do any rules apply here?)
  2. Way too much bend in your wrist. Straighten out your wrist.
  3. mark roberts

    mark roberts Supporting Member

    Nov 13, 2004
    Lawrence, KS
    Unless I'm missing something...is this your neck arm or your plucking arm? Slight clues tell me it's your plucking arm. The one that addresses the body of the bass.

    Like my doctor would say..."don't do that"...stand up and play if it results in a different pressure point that doesn't produce a negative physical response. Or, at least, if a stool is necessary for the sake of "acoustic performance appearance"...then get one that you can lean against, maintain a mostly upright/standing posture but look like you're in a seated playing position while keeping sensitive pressure points under control.
  4. mrjim123

    mrjim123 Supporting Member

    May 17, 2008
    Thanks, but I wasn't very clear in my original post (since edited). It is my picking arm that is the problem.

    I tried my old bass and found that I can rest the entire length of my forearm across the top of the bass body (so there's really no pressure point on the forearm), and my hand is in perfect picking position.

    Because my new bass's body is smaller I find that I have to pull my forearm back to get in correct picking position. As a result all of the weight of my right arm is resting on one small part of my forearm.
  5. mrjim123

    mrjim123 Supporting Member

    May 17, 2008

    I like the tall stool idea. Thanks.
  6. Jim Carr

    Jim Carr Dr. Jim Gold Supporting Member

    Jan 21, 2006
    Denton, TX or Kailua, HI
    fEARful Kool-Aid dispensing liberal academic card-carrying union member Musicians Local 72-147
    THAT is how it is done. :cool: :hyper:
  7. It helps me to use a strap on the bass even when sitting down. That way I don't use my right arm to steady the bass.
  8. Has a doctor given you a diagnosis of Carpal Tunnel Syndrome? Sounds to me that you got poor technique, straighten out your wrist, your cutting of the circulation, that's all.

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