1. Please take 30 seconds to register your free account to remove most ads, post topics, make friends, earn reward points at our store, and more!  
    TalkBass.com has been uniting the low end since 1998.  Join us! :)

I've been slapping until my hand bleeds

Discussion in 'General Instruction [BG]' started by Boudinot Bass, Apr 18, 2006.

  1. Boudinot Bass

    Boudinot Bass

    Apr 18, 2006
    Right now, I have to stop playing my upright bass for about a week after playing it only for a couple minutes due to pain. My fingers are splitting open from rockabilly slapping. Does anyone know how to protect my hand so I can play all the time?
  2. you could try some kind of medical tape
  3. stingray96191


    Jul 27, 2001
    Pittsburgh, PA
    Unofficially Endorsing Ernie Ball Music Man Guitars
    If you are using steel strings, stop.

    And during your downtime check out www.rockabillybass.com they are generally more helpful than not.

  4. simpy1


    Mar 31, 2005
    New Zealand

    My recommendation is super glue. Seriously. Get the stuff in the little bottle with a brush (like a nail polish bottle). Brush it on the side of your thumb and your fingers. It'll feel weird at first but it words a charm. Maybe do a search.

    Otherwise let them heal a bit, then go at it again. You'll eventually get some mean callouses.
  5. And she still won't listen!

    Take time off. The callouses form when your body repairs the damage caused by slapping. Its like any form of training. Lifting weights, running. Working out breaks DOWN your body. The rest between workouts makes you stronger when the body is given enough time to heal, it heals, and goes a step further, making you stronger so you can handle the stress that caused the damage.

    Being a little sore is ok, going until you bleed is too much at one time. Practice slapping every two or 3 days, regular playing or rest on the off days. You should have better callouses every practice, if your fingers keep getting sorer, you're either doing too much, not letting enough time pass to let them heal, or both.

  6. ebe9


    Feb 26, 2006
    South Africa
    Take a break and if you absolutely have to play, like others have said, superglue is your friend.
  7. pkr2


    Apr 28, 2000
    coastal N.C.
    You really should consider using nylon or gut strings.

    A neat trick is to use plain old adhesive tape. Unroll a couple or three inches and roll a very tight little roll about 1/8" in diameter on the end. Tear it off and position the little rolled up part on the end of your "picking" finger to create a sort of knob that will work like a pick. Wrap two or three turns over the little "knob". Keep everything beow the last Knuckle joint so that you can still bend your finger.

    Be careful! You can really cause some permanent damage by continuing to use ANY technique that causes pain.
  8. Alvaro Martín Gómez A.

    Alvaro Martín Gómez A. TalkBass' resident Bongo + cowbell player

    I respectfully disagree. Steels sound great for standard pizzicato technique, but they lack that "bouncing" tone quality that guts have when slapped. I love the slap-rockabilly DB style and I was working really hard on that last year, but I stopped because my DB has steel strings and always had my fingertips literally destroyed (letting them heal didn't work). When I can get a DB with guts, I'll start again.


  9. If I wasn't studying anatomy, that'd make me nauseous.
  10. And isnt this the BG forum...or did i step into the wrong room again?

Share This Page