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Wrist Pain: Nothing or Everything to do with bass?

Discussion in 'Technique [BG]' started by jammadave, Sep 21, 2004.


  1. jammadave

    jammadave Rudderless ship Supporting Member

    Oct 15, 2003
    Wash DC metro area
    Hi guys -

    I have an interesting problem.

    My hands and wrists are fine for playing - I get no pain before, during, or after playing (unless I'm playing Primus's "American Life", then my fretting fingers get so tired they're slow to respond after a few minutes).

    But (and I haven't the slightest memory if I've asked this before, so bear with me) -

    I cannot bend my wrists backward without pain.

    By this I mean, using the example of sitting down on the floor: Most people will crouch down, put their right hand palm-down to the floor behind them, and use that to lower them to their butt. When I do this, the pain is so great in my wrist that the whole arm collapses to avoid that wrist angle.

    Another analogy: If I put my palms together, straight up, in front of me, like I'm praying; I'm okay as long as my forearms are apart enough that it's about like a Mercedes logo; 120 degrees between forearms, and 120 between each forearm and my hands together. But, as I bring my hands downward toward my lap, and my forearm-to-hand angle goes past 105 degrees or so (toward 90) I find it IMPOSSIBLE to press my palms together without severe pain in the carpal/metacarpal area.

    I plan on seeing a doctor as soon as I can quantify the whole thing, really tell her what's wrong and when it's good and bad and whatever.... But anybody have any preliminary thoughts?

    Somehow I don't think my playing is doing this. But, everyone here knows a lot about hand injury from playing and whatnot, so I thought I'd ask.
     
  2. jammadave

    jammadave Rudderless ship Supporting Member

    Oct 15, 2003
    Wash DC metro area
    Oh, and the pain is localized to the carpal bones themselves, there is no numbness, shooting pain or the like normally associated with CTS.
     
  3. I would seek medical advice - it doesn't sound normal.
     
  4. CJK84

    CJK84

    Jan 22, 2004
    Maria Stein, OH
    See the doctor asap. While this problem may not have resulted directly from playing the bass, your time spent on the instrument may be aggravating it.

    Good luck.
     
  5. You might try stretching by doing the praying-position thing and pushing it a little. Obviously, the key is to be extremely gentle and to listen to your doctor's recommendation over mine, but it's a thought.
     
  6. Ozzyman

    Ozzyman

    Jul 21, 2004
    NEVER stretch to the point of pain though. It's one of the worst things you can do because it actually causes your muscles to tighten and create bigger rips in the tendon or muscle you're stretching and it will become tighter.
     
  7. Joe P

    Joe P

    Jul 15, 2004
    Milwaukee, WI
    Dude!

    Did you ever figure-out what that was?

    I have the same problem now!!

    Joe
     
  8. Chili

    Chili

    Mar 8, 2005
    Newcastle/England
    i had what sounds like the exact same problem, i couldnt wrest my hand on anything or bend it backwards coz it would hurt like hell, it was becoming abit of a problem for me but some people sed try to relax more, fore ur self to do it, so i did for a while but it didnt seem to go away but then it just went by itself, mabe i stared to relax while playing without realizing it, it will probs just blow over, and mabe try to force ur self to relax aswell and if nothing, see a docter mabe
     
  9. Dharmabum

    Dharmabum

    Jul 11, 2005
    Richmond, VA
    I will simply say that you MUST seek medical help for this. I don't want this to sound insulting to anyone on the board because it's full of very dedicated musicians, but it's probably not full of very dedicated doctors.

    Three years back I was suffering wrist problems, decided to just play through it and not see a doctor until it was extremely uncomfortable, and then was unable to play bass for five months due to CTS. And as I'm sure you're an avid bassist, imagine having a doctor telling you that you can't do what you love. It sucks and any precautions you can take to avoid this situation are worth it.

    Don't worry about trying to be specific for the doctor. They have very specific tests for repetitive stress injuries. And remember, their job is to figure out what's wrong with patients!

    Best of luck.
     
  10. machine gewehr

    machine gewehr

    Sep 17, 2005
    Istanbul
    About 6 months before I could not even open a door with my right hand because of that pain in my wrist.My hand was somehow forced really hard to move as it is not supposed to be and this problem began.Don't ask me how,its a stupid and ridiculous
    story :) I went to see a doctor and I couldn't play bass for a month and thats so sad for me.Doctor said i could even have a surgery for this.I had phsycal therapy and it's still not fully recovered as it hurt when i punched my brother today :smug:
    Go and see a doctor mates,before its too late!
    Hope you the best.