How do you play your bass when sitting down?

Discussion in 'General Instruction [BG]' started by Bassic Needs, Aug 1, 2020.

  1. Bass body on your leg

    192 vote(s)
  2. Between legs

    55 vote(s)
  1. Bassic Needs

    Bassic Needs

    Jul 7, 2019
    Do you play with the body sitting on your right leg (assuming you play right-handed) or do you play with it between your legs like Hadrien Feraud?

    I am wondering what are the advantages and disadvantages are for each.

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    Last edited: Aug 1, 2020
    Smooth_bass88 likes this.
  2. I play right-handed. If I sit, bass rest on the left thigh. For me, this just positions the bass in a position that is similiar to my standing position and it keeps the neck raised. Also, for me, it just allows for better access to the upper register on the instrument. If I rest the bass on my left thigh it is a bigger transition when I stand and the neck is in a more horizontal position. Different strokes for different folks . . .
  3. I play both. If im playing with a pick, its between the legs. With fingerstyle its on my right leg.

    I dont hear very much tonal difference between the 2 wether with pick or fingerstyle, its all about comfort.
  4. Bassic Needs

    Bassic Needs

    Jul 7, 2019
    I find myself feeling more comfortable with the bass sitting between my legs, and I also think the bass position doesn't really shift when I stand. It does seem like a bit of a stretch to get the lower notes though.

    Technique is probably an issue since I am coming from playing some guitar previously. The other issue besides the reach is a tendency to not keep my left hand parallel to the fretboard (fingers not perpendicular and wrist turned a little bit)

    I'm trying not to develop bad habits; playing while sitting is how I am going to do most of my learning. I wanted to find out what the majority of folks do and does it really come down to just preference or is one better than the other.
    ObsessiveArcher and TN WOODMAN like this.
  5. pcake

    pcake Supporting Member

    Sep 20, 2011
    Los Angeleez
    i'm short and right handed, and i play with the waist of the bass on my right knee.
    OpposableThumbs and Bassic Needs like this.
  6. EchoEcho


    Oct 14, 2007
    I try to keep as much of a 45-55 deg angle from the horizontal as possible so as not to overstretch my wrist. I also don't want the bass to be too low but reasonably high (but not neck-tie height! At least not just yet anyway). Thus, my bass is between my legs. My main aim is for comfort and avoiding health problems down the road such as carpel tunnel
  7. dalkowski

    dalkowski Supporting Member

    May 20, 2009
    Massachusetts USofA
    Just as poorly as when I'm standing.

    Srsly, body on right leg.
  8. Badly. I can't get it into a good position while sitting.
  9. JRA

    JRA my words = opinion Supporting Member

    either, both, other. depends on the chair/stool/sitting surface and other variables: practice? ensemble? the music? reading? strap? --- yada yada. it's about getting the job i adapt. but i like to sit when i can!*

    * i also like to stand when i can! :laugh:
  10. Govner22


    Jan 19, 2013
    If you can replicate your “standing up” position, that would seem to be best. I hang my bass a little low to avoid some right elbow arthritis I’d get otherwise so I practice standing up much of the time. Not always ideal but it replicates what I’d do at a gig.
  11. Nashrakh


    Aug 16, 2008
    Hamburg, Germany
    Bass on right leg, with the right foot on a stool to raise it.

    I find that with the bass on my right leg I have better overall access to most neck positions. Plus I can't seem to physically fit a bass between my legs...
  12. gebass6

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

    In between the legs.

    Four points of support.
    Left thigh.
    Right thigh.
    Upper horn against the chest.
    Strap is on.
    Sitting on the edge of a chair.
    Legs in a ninety degree angle.

    When tapping the bass easily goes vertical from this position.

    When I stand the bass is in the same position as when I sit.
    Last edited: Aug 1, 2020
  13. doran.dragic


    Jul 2, 2014
    I use both.

    Right leg (I'm right handed) if I'm playing music that requires me to play at the frets 1-9 a lot.
    Between the legs if I'm playing higher up. This position makes my left shoulder hurt if I'm staying in the lower frets region too long.
  14. cmcbass

    cmcbass Supporting Member

    Jan 4, 2018
    Bass sits on my right leg. Guitar I play between the legs.
  15. doran.dragic


    Jul 2, 2014
    How long have you been using the footstool? Have you ever been experiencing any discomfort? I'm asking because a lot of orthopedists that deal with musician injuries feel that the asymmetrical position that you're in when using a footstool can lead to medical problems.

    I know classical guitarists use leg supports which they position on their left leg.
  16. Bassndrums73


    Mar 13, 2018
    Right leg.
    Bassic Needs likes this.
  17. BarfanyShart


    Sep 19, 2019
    DC Metro
    I was taught young to wear a strap even when sitting down because neither on the leg or between the legs is optimal ergonomics for most people - and that has remained ingrained in me, right or wrong. That said, now that both my BGs are short scale, between the legs is mostly fine.
    Paul New, Pops OB, TN WOODMAN and 3 others like this.
  18. Cut the middle

    Cut the middle

    Apr 17, 2020
    Right thigh in the "waist"
    Bassic Needs likes this.
  19. Bassic Needs

    Bassic Needs

    Jul 7, 2019
    I did wonder about using some type of footrest to elevate my right leg but I worried about the ergonomics. I can't cross my legs like some people do, so I gravitated towards using the bass in the middle.

    Sounds like I should give the strap a go to see how that helps.
  20. tb-player

    tb-player Gold Supporting Member

    Mar 6, 2019
    I also use a classical guitar foot rest/stand to elevate my right foot. It works well.
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