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Discussion in 'Technique [BG]' started by Guss, Oct 23, 2002.

  1. I've got some songs that I really enjoy playing, however they have some big stretches in them that I can't do yet. Is there any exercises that I can do to improve my stretch ability?
  2. Work with frets 1 anf 4 with fingers one and four. Or you can try starting with the (first fret, first finger) then while holding that finger down place (second fret, second finger) holding both of those fingers down place down (third fret, third finger) and finally (forth fret, forth finger) remember to do this exercise really slowly holding each finger down for about 10 sec. before moving on to the next fret. After doing this on the G string move to the A string and so on. If you want more practicego back to the G string and instead of start on the 1st fret(Ab) start on the second fret (A) and repeat the pattern. Do this once each day for a week and see how you feel. If you can't reach after that come back and see me and I will prescribe something more potent.
  3. Another possible solution...
    How big are the stretches?
    If it's something like 1st fret to 7th fret on the E, you could just play F on the E string and play B on the A string, 2nd fret.

    Also, how low do you wear your bass? The lower you have it the harder it will be to reach larger gaps across the fingerboard, generally speaking.
  4. Bryan R. Tyler

    Bryan R. Tyler TalkBass: Usurping My Practice Time Since 2002 Staff Member Administrator Gold Supporting Member

    May 3, 2002
    And don't forget to keep your hands warm and keep your breathing steady and constant; proper blood circulation helps the dexterity of your hands.

    Or just get a seven-string. Then you can play 28 notes all in a single finger-per-fret position :D
  5. Sorry, the stretch is on the D string, a hammer on stretch consisting of three notes. It goes from 7th fret to 9 to 11 and back again, any advice?
  6. Hmmm...
    All I can think of, really, is practice it.
    Or if you want, practice a 2-4-6 stretch on the G string, and when you can do that, the 7-9-11 won't seem so bad. :p
  7. Fliptrique


    Jul 22, 2002
    Szczecin, Poland
    Endorsing Artist: Mayones Guitars&Basses
    Do lots of C maj i 2 octaves. Do lotsa maj scales in 2 octaves. Really. Helps a lot on stretching and precision (higer positions on e string were a big problem to me before I did C maj 2000 times:D

    As I think about it, I come to conclusion, that playing 2 octave scales is a great excersise for just about everything. Do them.

    Rock on,
  8. Refinger it. Or practice playing stretchy things.

    Heck, do both.
  9. beermonkey


    Sep 26, 2001
    Seattle, WA
    Why not play the 11th fret C# as the 6th fret on the G string? If it's absolutely necessary to play it this way, you'll just have to work on it a bunch; and related stretching. I don't have a bass with me, but if I were to play that 7 - 9 - 11 on the D string, I'd probably use my index finger for the A, my middle finger for the B, and my pinky for the C#.

    Something that I've found to be a good warm up exercise that will most likely help you on your quest for greater stretching ability is playing 3-string arpeggios.




    This example would be based on C major... very easy to extend it all the way up the neck and then come back down again.
  10. pyrohr


    Aug 28, 2001
    Pakistani compound
    When I was younger I used to put a tennis ball between my fingers on my freting hand and sqeeze the ball with just those two fingers, let me tell you this is a hell of an exercise but if you do this you will notice you hand will open up more thus allowing you greater reach with you fretting hang while strenthening you hand.
  11. See I have a stretching problem too.
    I have generally small fingers for a bass palyer and cos I haven't even got a bass yet.... yes yes I know, I'm getting one soon.......it makes life really hard when I do play on bass (I use a 3/4 classical guitar to practice :( ) So what generally happens is that I will get a riff donw perfectly on that, but you put a bass in my hands and I'm absolutley edit: changing one letter of a word does not make it acceptable. Choose more acceptable vocabulary. - MOD
  12. Wrong Robot

    Wrong Robot Guest

    Apr 8, 2002
    I love having big hands :D
  13. beermonkey


    Sep 26, 2001
    Seattle, WA
    I hate you...

    :D :D :D
  14. Ahhh, me too. I mean, there really medium size, but the fingers are long. I'm a teenager so I'm still growing. The stretch is just barely out of reach.:D
  15. supergreg


    Jan 20, 2002
    Keep on practicing. I used to have a hard time playing Seeman by Rammstein, but after enouph practice I was able to make huge stretches. :)
  16. I have found that the more you practice the easier the jumps get. So Practice
  17. Make sure your thumb is pointing in the same direction as your fingers. Your thumb will naturally want to point towards the headstock, which limits the span of your left hand.

    Good Luck,

  18. I am a smaller framed female, and have small hands. I stretch my fingers everyday whenever I'm just sitting around like watching tv. This has helped me tremendously. Before when I tried to do stretching exercises on the bass, my hands would just cramp up, but its much better now that I've stretched. Another thing that helps me even though it isn't stretching related, chinese metal balls have halped with dexterity and coordination.
  19. RobOtto


    Aug 15, 2002
    Denton, TX
    Yeah I second the metal balls. I picked some up from Ebay for about $10 shipped and work on clockwise and counterclockwise while watching TV or something. Pretty decent hand workout and stretch.
  20. Yes I have those things, it just never occured to me that they could be used for stretching!
    OOh I also foound a good stretching song, Summertime rolls by Jane's addiction


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