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Squeezing the neck

Discussion in 'Technique [BG]' started by Mike Macktavish, Nov 23, 2018.

  1. Mike Macktavish

    Mike Macktavish

    Nov 23, 2018

    What exercises/techniques do you recommend to stop from squeezing the neck while playing? Are there any links that illustrate any of that?

    Thanks and happy Thanksgiving,

  2. I’ve had problems with this too.

    In my case it only seemed to happen when performing live, but what helped me the most was relaxing my plucking hand. You may not realize it but if you are squeezing the neck you are probably tensing up both hands inadvertently.
    Try practicing slowly with your fretting hand thumb completely off of the neck and after awhile let your thumb naturally come to the back of the neck. Keep your plucking hand relaxed and the fretting hand seems to fall in line. At least for me it did. Hope this helps.
  3. fearceol


    Nov 14, 2006
    +1 to the above.

    OP..incorporate the above exercise into your practice routine on a regular basis. Do it for three or four minutes before and at the end of a practice session. Refer back to it for a minute or two during the practice.
    Fergie Fulton likes this.
  4. Nashrakh


    Aug 16, 2008
    Hamburg, Germany
    Additionally to the above, make sure your setup is optimal so you don't feel the need to squeeze in the first place.
    Fergie Fulton, Curtbass and Lobster11 like this.
  5. May or may not be the issue, but now would be a good time to look at your posture. This video helped me when i got a heavier bass, had some neck dive and some resulting left hand tension:
    Fergie Fulton likes this.
  6. mambo4


    Jun 9, 2006
    This is the best exercise I have found to cure Left hand "death grip"

  7. Mushroo

    Mushroo Supporting Member

    Apr 2, 2007
    Massachusetts, USA
    Reposition your thumb so that it's physically impossible to squeeze the neck too hard.
  8. Badwater


    Jan 12, 2017
    The only technique I know of is, relax, and not get tense. And stand up and play with the bass lower than sitting position. I know this is all bad technique, but it works for me. And is not for everyone. Once you find a way to relax and play you can adapt the proper techniques to playing if it helps.
  9. Fergie Fulton

    Fergie Fulton

    Nov 22, 2008
    Retrovibe Artist rota
    Simple answer is know what role your fretting hand thumb plays in your technique...in mine it is non existent as a rule because fingers rule my technique and the thumb is just along for the ride.


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