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Left hand wrist-pains

Discussion in 'Technique [BG]' started by Phunky, Apr 29, 2006.

  1. Phunky

    Phunky Guest

    Aug 1, 2004
    I'm having pains in my left wrist, so i stopped playing for 3 days, and then played really soft and easy material but now it's back :S what should i do?

  2. IanStephenson

    IanStephenson UnRegistered User

    Apr 8, 2006
    Moderators: Can we get something sticky on this subject?
    It's REALLY important, and really common - I'm relativly new here, but in the last few weeks there have been a dozen almost identical posts: My XXX hurts - what can I do? A sticky post might get read BEFORE people have problems.

    In Summary:

    Look at your technique - everything should be straight or gently curved. If your wrist isn't almost straight then you're going to get pain.

    Warm up - a few shakes, roatations and stretches before playing. And between songs.

    Look at what else you might be doing - Computer keyboards are a prime culpit - esspecially laptops. Do you sleep lying on your hands/arms? While not necessarily painfull these can push your to the edge, and then playing tips you over.

    Don't over stretch your playing. Build up gradually - timewise and technique wise.

    Vitamin B + Cod Liver Oil (Omega3).

    Read "The Bassist's Guide to Injury Management, Prevention and Better Health" By Randall Kertz.

    If it hurts - stop doing it.

    If it keeps hurting see a Doctor.

    Wrist pain is like addiction - you don't get better, just handle it a day at a time. When it stops hurting, thats a good day but you've got to keep doing the right things or you fall of the wagon...

    I'm not an expert - just someone who's been there.

  3. SBassman


    Jun 8, 2003
    Northeast, US
    I think you have to start with:

    How long have you been playing? and
    Do you play almost daily, or are you a weekend warrior?

    If you have been playing for years, and you play regularly, then return to the previous post. :) But, if you are a new or infrequent player:

    Stamina rears it's head for bass players. There Is a physical part to bass playing, and, like an athlete, you need to build stamina. When I was first learning to play, I had pain frequently, but it wore away as my fingers/hands/wrists got stretched out and stronger.

    Interesting that this thread came up, because, I am now experiencing pain after starting to work on Rocco muting technique. It's forcing my hand into a different kind of position, and it actually hurts me after a while. But, going slow, steady, and regularly, I'm expecting it to work itself away like the past.
  4. Mike


    Sep 7, 2000
    look at the set up on your bass as well. is your action a mile high? are you using a heavy string gauge? if so, try to make adjustments or have it adjusted and set up properly. that can make a world of difference.
  5. Pierre_Pontroli


    Mar 18, 2006
    After two years of infrequent doodling I decided to start playing seriously. After only a few days I noticed I was getting a horrible clicking pain right in the middle of my wrist. Since then I've tried real hard to play with a straight wrist, and it seem to have done the trick. I did start getting other pains, shooting pains; and realised I was putting too much pressure on my fingertips when fretting. I messed around with different pressures to try and get a good tone with the minimum pressure. Still working on that one!!
  6. steveb98

    steveb98 [acct disabled - multiple aliases]

    Mar 15, 2006
    Venice, CA
    Shorten your strap and get the bass up higher, that helps force you to straighten out forearm and wrist. Try to keep the neck up higher same thing. Look at a classical guitarist left arm and wrist they are taught that straight line between forearm and wrist.

    Also work on a lighter touch, you could be gripping too hard, that's how drummer get tendentious gripping sticks too hard. You don't have to play hard to get a big sound. Listen to someone like Gary Willis lightest touch around but big precussive sound.

    Take a couple lessons and work on position and technique.

    Remember you need to listen you your body (wrist in this case) it trying to tell you something. If you don't you will have a short music life and long life of wrist pain.
  7. cb56


    Jul 2, 2000
    Central Illinois
    Also the bass itself might be part of the problem. As much as I wish I could, I absolutely cannot play a Warwick or Spector with the NS style bodies. The smaller body plus the slight neck dive cause me to use an extreme angle with my right wrist that causes me pain. One gig and I'm in pain for a couple of weeks. once I switch back to a larger style body (Fenderish) with good balance, the pain goes away and stays away.

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