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My neck hurts... a lot...

Discussion in 'Technique [BG]' started by SlavaF, Jun 21, 2003.

  1. SlavaF


    Jul 31, 2002
    Edmonton AB
    Hey all.

    Ever since I got my 3rd bass, an Ibanez BTB405QM, my neck pains have become a lot worse... I swear, I am always cracking my neck, trying to make it hurt less...

    This bass is heavy and large, and I'm only 14, so I'm definitely still developing, so I know this can't be very good for me.

    So what would you all suggest to me, in order to have less pains in my neck? I will be getting a padded strap soon, and I'm trying to play sitting more often (I pretty much always play standing), but does anybody know any other things that would help me here?

    PS, don't suggest a new bass, because I simply can't afford one. But I played a Redwood Cirrus 4 today, that thing's calling my name!:D :bassist:
  2. Wrong Robot

    Wrong Robot Guest

    Apr 8, 2002
  3. Wrong Robot

    Wrong Robot Guest

    Apr 8, 2002
    Also, this might be hard to change, but If you sleep on your stomach, your neck is going to be more sore.

    Sleeping on your back will prevent this.

    Or you can go out and get a special pillow designed to combat this strain. talk to a sleep store, from what I know, they are usually filled with barley or some such grain.
  4. ASRagain


    Jun 20, 2003
    There are straps out there that go over both shoulders and therefore distribute the weight of the bass on both shoulders. I apologize, but I don't know who makes them. Take a look online or in your local instrument dealer's store.

    I would definitely look into a solution quick. Kneck and shoulder problems can progress to a point where they will never go away, or will only go away with a lot of physical therapy.

    Good luck and if you find one of those straps, let me know. I'm looking for one too.

  5. Christopher


    Apr 28, 2000
    New York, NY
    Work out and get huge. Huuuuuuuge.

    Sitting helps. So does shortening the length of the strap, though too short can cause you to overflex your right hand wrist, and looks nerdy. Pay attention to your posture and make sure you're not leaning forward too much. If you lean back very slightly, you can let your abdomen/chest take some of the weight, though too much and you'll strain your back.

    Sooner or later someone here's going to start mentioning Alexander Technique.
  6. SBassman


    Jun 8, 2003
    Northeast, US
    This is a problem for many people.
    You're not alone

    The answer is not working out.

    Lots of basses feel like trees.
    You have to find one that is comfortable
    for You.

    2 parts to the solution:

    1. Get a good strap that takes stress off your back.

    2. Go to a music store and play every bass. Note the weights. There are some basses that are Twice as heavy as others. Find a light bass and buy it.

    And one more possibility:
    3. Consider short scales. Contrary to popular opinion, you Can get awesome tone out of a short scale bass. Especially if you have some other effects/preamps. Some short scales are 1/3 the weight of their 34" and 35" tree brothers.

    You Don't need a huge bass.
  7. SlavaF


    Jul 31, 2002
    Edmonton AB
    Thanks for the suggestions, I really appreciate them.:) I will definitely get a padded strap, one of those pillows WR suggested, and try to lean back a bit when I play (not to mention sitting more).

    But right now, I really cannot afford to get a new bass, and if I did, I'd get a max of $500 CAD trade in value for my BTB, not enough to get a decent bass... (I don't want an OLP or a Squire...)

    But thanks, I'll try some of those suggestions out!:) :bassist:
  8. Your bass' weight is definitely a consideration but sometimes, simply looking down at the neck a lot more than we realize (especially at that over to the side angle) can really be a pain in the neck. Either try to wean yourself away from looking as much or try moving the bass to your other knee in the classical guitar position (seated) and see if that helps. It allows you to play up the neck keeping your neck and your wrists straighter.

    A big 3: or wider strap will work wonders.

    The X braced "slider strap" is a great idea but it's pretty thin strap material and isn't padded at all on the shoulder. I'd love to see a thick padded version come out...
  9. Only


    Sep 8, 2002
    Warrensburg, MO
    I'm surprised no one mentioned this yet.

    I had the neck pains when i first got my BTB405 too. My problem? The longer scale and wider neck were making me reach farther, the higher string tension was making me fret the strings harder, and every time I did that I was tensing up the muscles on the side of my neck and in my shoulder...Which were being kinked by my strap.

    I shifted my bass a couple inches to my right when sitting, and changed the way my strap hung on me (Yeah, I play kinda like Trujillo now :spit: ) when standing, and that solved all my neck pains.