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Is it.. CTS?

Discussion in 'General Instruction [BG]' started by FallenDestiny, Jan 25, 2013.

  1. FallenDestiny


    Mar 21, 2012
    Alright, so I may just be worrying too, too much but hear me out.
    Firstly, I'm not much of a fingerstyle player, because till now I mostly played songs that didn't require the use of fingers, or the original bassist had used a pick too. But yes, I did practise my fingerstyle technique, hoping to gradually improve it so that I could start with some Maiden.

    So yesterday, I was playing the Clairvoyant repeatedly, about 4 times. Then I switched to The Number of the Beast. I had barely been playing for about 2 and a half hours, when I noticed a pain in the below mentioned area.

    The area is as follows: Look at the skin between the middle finger and the ring finger (on the back of the hand). Now slowly run your finger south from that area, till JUST south of the knuckles. That's where I observed the pain. It was a sharp pain, that went away as soon as I stopped playing.

    For a newbie to playing Steve Harris basslines, I expected it to be hard on the plucking hand, as these basslines usually involve speed and stamina. I stopped playing right then, and now about 14 hours later (which includes 10 of sleep) the situation is still the same. I looked up Carpal Tunnel Syndrome on the net, and searched for images of affected areas, and found that the area of pain seems to come under the affected areas..

    Please, please help me out here. Is it really CTS? I only started playing about a year ago, and I'm 15 (if that makes a difference at all).
  2. banyaksuka


    Jan 25, 2013
    Hi, at your age I very much doubt you have CTS, especially since you've only been playing for such short time. I wouldn't worry too much about the pain, probably just muscle strain.

    In the future though, you should always take a break after 30 minutes. Just stop for 5 minutes, shake and stretch your hands, the things typists are told to do these days under workplace health and safety rules. This will make a big difference in the long run.
  3. kevteop


    Feb 12, 2008
    York, UK
    If you were developing CTS or inflamed tendons then pain in that place wouldn't be the most obvious symptom. You'd probably have some discomfort in your wrist and numbness in your fingers and/or thumb (due to the inflammation trapping the nerves in your wrist).

    It sounds like you've just over-done it a bit. Two and a half hours of intense playing is a lot, especially if you're learning a new technique you may be too tense. Just wait for the pain to go away and take it at a steadier pace in future.

    Of course if the pain persists go see a doctor.
  4. fearceol


    Nov 14, 2006
    As well as the advice given so far, I'd like to add, give the hand a day or two to rest. If the pain has gone away,(never play through pain hoping it will go away) then try playing again, BUT not before spending about three or four minutes doing some gentle hand stretches (see links below). Do them after your practice session also. Do them slowly and gently. Dont force anything. After an hour, take a break from playing for about fifteen minutes.

    As has also been said, if the pain persists, see a doctor.

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