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question about Strength VS Dexterity

Discussion in 'Technique [BG]' started by fr0me0, Jun 30, 2005.

  1. fr0me0


    Dec 7, 2004
    Winnipeg Canada
    I have a question for the guys that say you have all the strength you need and that what you need is dexterity. My buddy showed me and exersise from a guitar work out. (I think it was Steve Vai but I can't remember) but anyways the exercise is for endurance. What you do is hammer on with your index finger for a minute, then your middle finger then your ring then you pinky and then every day you make the time a little longer to build endurance. Thing is this exercise makes my forearm burn like it would when i'm doing a forearm exercise while strenght training. Does this mean its a bad exercise and something I shouldn't be doing?
  2. JMX

    JMX Vorsprung durch Technik

    Sep 4, 2000
    Cologne, Germany
    pain = bad
  3. fr0me0


    Dec 7, 2004
    Winnipeg Canada
    I wouldn't realy say its painful. Just burns a bit like when you are exercising a mucsle. Not the kinda of pain you get when you are hurting a mucsle by doing something improperly.
  4. You are right in the sense of endurance. A big forearm from playing is due to muscle endurance, not strength, although it becomes strength. Simply, you don't need any strength to play anything that can be played within a 10 second period. (meaning you can shred at a billion miles an hour for 10 seconds and its all dexterity + innate strength/minimal endurance.)
  5. Razman


    Feb 10, 2005
    Orange Park, FL
    Sounds just like excercise to me. You should be fine; I think I may start doing this to warm up for practicing...
  6. Correlli


    Apr 2, 2004
    New Zealand
    What ever it is, it's very uncomfortable.

    Some people don't like that feeling.

    All I can say is that you're a big sissy :bawl:

    Edit: man, my engish is bad.
  7. Strength isn't a bad thing to have, and you do need to have a certain base level of strength in your fingers, since you won't be able to fret or pluck notes effectively without it. I think the guys who say you have all the strength you need are reacting against the guys who talk about using those grip master things (or whatever they're called). Using one of those is mostly overkill. Many people may already have the strength they need to play the bass. Those who don't will quickly acquire it simply by playing. Once you reach that point you're not going to gain anything by doing strength building exercises.

    What almost everyone needs to work on is endurance. Endurance and strength are two different things. There are three kinds of muscle fiber. Type I is found mostly in the muscles you use all the time to maintain your posture. It's slow but has great endurance. Type IIA is fast and has good endurance. Type IIB is fast but tires quickly. It's the kind that makes you bulky and muscular. When you do endurance building exercises you transform Type IIB fibers into Type IIA fibers.

    So, do you have all the strength you need? Probably, especially if you're an adult. Do you still have a need for exercise? Definately. Not strength training, but endurance training. That burn in your arm is a sign that you're exercising enough to see results.
  8. I´d like to sidetrack for a while if I may because I don´t want to start a new thread about a similar subject.

    Recently I heard from a guitarplayer that like me do a good amount of weighttraining that he never exercised his forearms at the gym because he thought it would cause problems with his guitarplaying.

    This seems really weird to me because I dont really se any harm in forearm exercise, ifa anything it should do good I think exept just after the workout when you are stiff in your forearm.

    So my questin is ofcource: Does anyone have any info or thoughts on this subject?
  9. Suckbird

    Suckbird Banned

    May 4, 2004
    I did that excercise mirrored with my right hand 4fingers too, i picked 5min at each finger and no rest and i can say i burned pretty nice in my forearms, but i think this will give me a hell of a endurance when i do fast single-string tapping...

    also, am i supposed to have my let's say index finger frett when i practice the other 3fingers or just hammer on from open string?

    also, am i supposed to have a whole floating hand :p

    And yeah, i'm also afraid from excercise at the gym, what if i would hurt a muscle or something in my arms and not be able to play...
  10. Ok. That wasnt really my question. It was more if weight training on you forearms can be a bad influence on your playing. Injuries not included.

    But as you said, injuring your arm yould indeed be a nightmare ofa a situation.
  11. MCT


    Apr 11, 2005
    What about when your palm cramps up. You know when you're holding a note with your index and then alternatig with your ring and pinky? I mean I cramp up like no tommorrow and I don't try to do it often just whenthose lines come up.
  12. Meehaw


    Jun 11, 2003
    Gdynia, Poland
    Not when it's only muscle pain. :)
  13. To a point anyway. Burn from exercising is fine. When you reach the point where you can't go on, then you should take a 3-5 minute break to let your muscles recover. You can overstress a muscle, but that's likely to show up a day or two later.

    I don't think it would hurt, as long as you don't do strength training exclusively and you don't overdo it.
  14. Dasein


    Jun 19, 2005
    Strength is used for using heavey melee weapons like axes and halbreds. It also increases the damaged done with each attack. The amount you can carry in your pack also increases with strength.

    Dexterity is used in ranged weapons like bows and crossbows. It can also increase your ability to dodge a missle attack. The chance your attack has to hit an enemy is increased with dexterity.

    hehe, jk. But I don't see how that exercise is very relevent to bass playing unless you do lots of Vai-type tapping. I can play for hours with just normal fingering but it would hurt like that with lots of tapping because it's just not normally done in bass playing or even conventional guitar playing. I think you should just scrap that exercise if it hurts because I doubt it's helping in bass technique.

    but seriously, World or Warcraft rocks.
  15. cirwin


    May 2, 2005
    I try to get to the gym 2 or 3 times a week. When there, I do exercises for wrist & forearm strength and grip strength. I have Repetive Motion Syndrome. When I went to a doctor, she gave me a bunch of these exercises to do and they both help my playing and keep the pain away.

    Burn is ok, pain is a warning signal. If you're going to do exercises, have someone experienced (therapist, exercise trainer) show you how to do them. That way you should be ok and not injury yourself. Be aware of your body. Don't over-exercise, especially when starting out. (I'm amazed at how many people I see at the gym exercising wrong and often wearing support braces!)
  16. Not the workout animal I used to be, but basically.... combine weight training with stretching exercises and there is no problem at all. Baseball players and basketball players used to not lift weights because they were afraid the bulk would make them too slow. Well, look at them now. Look at sprinters for that matter. They all look like NFL linebackers.

    Building your strength in a healthy way is ALWAYS good. That said, muscle fatigue and lactic acid are things you want to avoid on the day of a gig! Don't hit upper body stuff at all on a gig day is my advice.
  17. What I mean is, what kind of bass do you use, cheaper basses have a higher action than expensive basses, at least they use too. So pushing and fingering are going to build strength.

    When you're forearms get tight take a moment and stretch them, try putting you're arms shoulder height at the sides and turn your plams in and try pushing out like you are pushing with the palm of your hand and rotate your hands foreward and back.

    As far as lifting look at Alice coopers old guitarist I think, can't remember which one, I just remember him being huge :eek:

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