Shoulder Problems..

Discussion in 'Miscellaneous [BG]' started by BaSsDuDe230, Feb 17, 2002.

  1. Lately when ever ive been playing (not even over extended periods of time) that the bass strap shoulder is really hurting. It won't stop me from playing the rest of the jam but it will be a real annoyance. I had to sit some of the time yesterday cause of this. Im 13 too...good health and all. What you all think it is? I didn't play with a strap for this whole week (11-16) w/o a strap and yesterday when i put it on, my shoulder still hurt...anyway thanks

    BTW This is probably where it should go...i dont think it belongs in OT but if you wanna move it go ahead :)
  2. lesfleanut

    lesfleanut Guest

    Sep 25, 2001
    Syracuse N.Y.
    i dont know, try one of those straps that goes over both shoulders. Peace;)
  3. Two-shoulder strap, huh? I've never seen one. Got one for my golf bag, because my back is starting to go. Sounds like a great idea for a bass, too. Does such an animal exist?
  4. Sweet. Maybe with one of these I can play my two-ton Alembic again. Thanks for the help.
  5. Brad Barker

    Brad Barker Supporting Member

    Apr 13, 2001
    berkeley, ca
    the two-shoulder strap is a great idea.

    also, there is a certain type of that is made up of a stretchy material. this way, the strap handles the majority of the bass' stress, although there is some stress on the shoulder.

    i tried something other than this on my spector (8+ pounds!) and my left arm started to go numb IN A MATTER OF SECONDS!!!

    (i wonder what type of straps JT uses. I mean, his basses are the heaviest of all-16 pounds, 25+ pounds. this is absolutely rediculous. whatever straps he uses must be incredibly good because he probably still has life left in his left arm...we should hope so, anyway!).
  6. lesfleanut

    lesfleanut Guest

    Sep 25, 2001
    Syracuse N.Y.
    No problem, all in a days work:D
  7. Brendan


    Jun 18, 2000
    Austin, TX
    Brad...I think JT uses Levy leather straps.
  8. I use a padded 2 1/2 in Leather Levy X-Long strap with my 10 lb (estimate) Fender MM Sig J-Bass...
  9. embellisher

    embellisher Holy Ghost filled Bass Player Staff Member Supporting Member

    8+ pounds? That's heavy? All of my basses weigh more than that.

    The stretchy strap that you referred to is made of neoprene, the best of which is the Comfort Strapp. Here is a link to one of the many places you can buy one online.

    But 3" padded Levy's work just fine for all of my basses.
  10. Brad Barker

    Brad Barker Supporting Member

    Apr 13, 2001
    berkeley, ca
    for the record, the strap that made my arm start to tingle was a guitar strap made out of all leather (or a leather substitute).

    no padding whatsoever.

    i haven't weighed my bass on the bathroom scale...that's a good idea...

    well, the scale said it was 9 pounds...but it said that i was like 134 or so. I was weighed at a doctor appointment last week and i was about 138...

    that strap is not exactly what i have, but it looks top-of-the-line quality. a little pricey, though. i think i'll stick to what i've got.

    jumping around with a strap like this with a neoprene strap isn't confidence inspiring. [look out: it's a bass slingshot!]
  11. i'm a 39 yr old mom bassist lol
    i say just get in shape dude :)
    i drive with a hand grip in my reach...
    sit ups and push ups bells
    heck i gotta be able to haul my equipment lol
    my strap is leather..made out of a horses belly girt lol
    and i play a '59 precision that's ballanced correctly as it hangs
    check differnt lengths for your starp..fine tune your muscles...and find your zin with your ax :) your back will thank you over the years
  12. RAM


    May 10, 2000
    Chicago, IL
    Hurting your shoulder? There's a lot of different mechanisms in the shoulder that could get injured if mistreated. I'd check with a doctor, if I were you, to see if you're doing some real damage.

  13. Ha! Wussy! I weigh in at 234!!!...My only opinion for you is BULK UP! hehehe:D

    And I had a neoprene strap...yeah it was really short and pretty much a thick rubber band...
  14. Over in the Technique forum they're discussing the merits of resting the right arm/wrist on the hip of the bass while playing.
    IMHO, resting your right arm on the guitar could add considerably to the weight of the instrument and the pressure being applied to the left neck-shoulder area. And, maybe some of us push down with right wrist on the hip of the instrument. This could add considerably to the pressure on the left shoulder.
    Try this TEST: Stand in position and play a couple bars, then let go of the neck with your left hand. If the headstock moves up, that means you're pressing down with the right. Or, just press down with your right wrist/forearm and notice the extra stress on your shoulder. I've not tried to measure it, but I'll bet it could more than double the weight of the instrument. I'd think it could contribute significantly to fatigue injuries in both arms (from pushing against each other) and the shoulder (from shouldering all that extra weight.)
    This also COULD be another good dynamic to pay attention to during practice, along with the OTHER right hand issue - alternating plucking fingers.
    Just a thought.
  15. Hategear

    Hategear Workin' hard at hardly workin'.

    Apr 6, 2001
    Appleton, Swissconsin
    The one thing that everyone that lifts weights knows, is that you should always listen to your body! When starting to play bass, you're going to be slightly uncomfortable (shoulders, forearms, wrists, fingers, fingertips), but if the pain continues for an extended amount of time or it really starts to hurt (especially if it becomes debilitating), STOP IMMEDIATELY and figure out what the problem is before continuing! It doesn't make you a "wuss" or a "wimp." You're body is telling you that something is wrong -- for the cry-eye, listen to it!

    How about this: 1) Try a wider strap, with some decent padding, or a Comfort Strapp (as was suggested). 2) Watch your playing style - be sure you're not adding to the weight of your bass by resting your hand on it (as was also suggested). 3) When your shoulder or arm starts to hurt, stop playing, remove the bass and rest a bit. Maybe do some arm circles to loosen things up in there. In fact, try some stretching exercises/arm circles before you start playing. 4) If you're in a gig situation and your shoulder starts to hurt, lift up on the bass between songs, taking the weight of the instrument off of your shoulder.

    If you try these things and your problems don't seem to be getting any better, or if they get worse, SEE A DOCTOR. And I would recommend a sports medicine doctor, if you can swing it. Oh yeah, when you're done for the day, try putting a warm compress or heating pad on your shoulder for about twenty minutes or so. You can also take up to 4 ibuprofin tablets every four hours, to help relieve pain and swelling.
  16. Another factor of shoulder pain is how high you wear your bass.. the lower you wear it, the more you´ll have to stretch your left (or right if you´re left handed) arm to hold the neck correctly..
    Also, if you wear it higher than your waist, and stand properly, the body will also rest on your tummy.. that has reduced a lot of shoulder pain to me..
  17. ive started to lift on a regular basis recently, so that might be the problem.
  18. Brad Barker

    Brad Barker Supporting Member

    Apr 13, 2001
    berkeley, ca
    BASSnSAX: I used to weigh more, but I got sick. No kidding. I lost at least 5 pounds in a matter of a month. then i stopped playing sports altogether (and started playing bass more and more...)

    i'm only an average-sized 16 year old.

    to keep this post nonpersonal (or less so, rather): the concept of not placing the right hand on the instrument makes so much sense. too bad i didn't do it much in the first place...

    i reckon i should raise the height a little, too. not only could it reduce the amount of stress, but it also offers greater playability.
  19. That is exactly what I use for my MIM Jazz Deluxe