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Old 12-24-2018, 07:11 PM
KarenB KarenB is offline
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Default my punishment for not playing

I have barely picked up my guitar to play it in a few weeks. I starting playing today, and my guitar is punishing me by giving me pain in my fingertips where my callouses once were.

I have for some reason, been in "resistance" mode. Does that ever happen to you? In my heart I want to make music but sometimes i'm resisting. The cure it seems, is just to do it, rusty playing, pain and all. Once I'm playing again, I'm a happier human.

Any tricks you've learned along the way to breakthrough resistance and prevent it from coming back?
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Last edited by KarenB; 12-24-2018 at 08:45 PM.
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Old 12-25-2018, 08:38 AM
Golffishny Golffishny is offline
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Since the most pressure to fret on many guitars is close to the nut, try to capo up a couple frets until you work your way back into it. Hope that helps.
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Old 12-27-2018, 06:51 AM
KarenB KarenB is offline
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Thanks Golffishny-- I read this too late and just "muscled" my way through. Thanks for the thought.
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Old 12-27-2018, 08:09 AM
Silly Moustache Silly Moustache is offline
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Hi Karen,

Like you. I have not really played sine my last rather casual rehearsal on Wednesday the 19th.

Strange thins are happening with my hands, possibly due to my extreme age (I'm 70) and possibly due to my weight loss last year due to caner and the ensuing treatment which made it difficult/impossible to eat/drink etc.

however my carpal tunnel syndrome has largely vanished, but I have issues with "trigger fingers"

I still can't regain any weight but I have been going to the gym since last January to regain some strength. This involves using various machines which may also contribute to my hand problems.

However this morning I resolved to get out my guitars and give myself a thorough play session. The first few minutes were very painful tight muscles in my fingers, but it eased up quickly and soon all felt normal.

I did lose my fingertips callouses last year when it was impossible for me to play from April until about September and longer to get my voice to work again. Once I did start playing just a little a day, they soon returned.

Hands and skin are adaptable, but they need gentle but repeated training to do what we require of them.

This helps:
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Old 12-27-2018, 09:58 AM
KarenB KarenB is offline
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Quote:
However this morning I resolved to get out my guitars and give myself a thorough play session. The first few minutes were very painful tight muscles in my fingers, but it eased up quickly and soon all felt normal.
Glad the tightness eased up quickly. Happy picking!
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Old 12-28-2018, 07:21 AM
Golffishny Golffishny is offline
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Silly, good that your carpal tunnel symptoms eased. When I lost weight my Carpal tunnel, cubitol tunnel and trigger finger symptoms eased. Now I just have some light tingling and numbness at times. My dexterity has come back almost 90% after 3 years. I had a piano teacher who was in her upper 80's. She had bad arthritis throughout her body but said as long as she played piano some every day her hands worked ok and her pain in her hands was lessened. Even 10 minutes a day helps. Good luck with your recovery.
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Old 12-28-2018, 07:49 AM
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Mbroady Mbroady is offline
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(Way) Back in the day I would use a little something-something to attract the muse.
These day i stick to a more low key method. I spin (these days it’s not really spin) some tunes on Pandora and let the music lead they way. Sometimes old favorites, but I do I try to find some new stuff. If something grabs me I will purchase and down load it then cop some chord changes and grooves off of the tracks

There’s some great music out there. Ironically one of my new favorites it a group called “The Fretless’” which has no guitars in the group. But great songs, vocals, lyrics, melodies.....

In regards to the pain...ouch......perhaps some aspirin till you get your guitar fingers back.
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Old 12-28-2018, 10:25 AM
der Geist der Geist is offline
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This was just posted a few minutes ago. Very fortuitous timing for you.
https://m.youtube.com/watch?v=5CMFHflZ7XY

Carl’s chanel is excellent, i have learned a lot from him. Sometimes when i get de-motivated i will spend an evening or morning just watching guitar videos and will find something that get me motivated again.

As far as the fingers go...i am finally to the point with the calluses that i can go a week without playing and they dont hurt when i start up again. My accuracy and timing however will suffer greatly from not practicing. Previously i found that a drop or two of super glue on the tips of my fingers would let me practice without them hurting while my calluses we rebuilding. Nail polish remover usually takes it off or it will wear off pretty quickly.
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Old 12-29-2018, 08:25 AM
Golffishny Golffishny is offline
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We used to use super glue on our fingers to cover cuts while bowling.
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Old 12-29-2018, 10:32 AM
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I find that playing with others creates the need and motivation to practice and prepare. Sometimes buying a new toy or accessory helps. Keeping my instruments out of their cases and available is huge for me. Even if you're not motivated to practice per se, an instrument that is just immediately available to be played will help you do the necessary maintenance to keep your hands conditioned to play.

I just returned from a 10 day vacation Thursday night with a Friday gig scheduled. I had not played in 11 or 12 days with the exception of a 15 minute visit to a guitar store (before family dragged me out ). I thought I'd pay the price last night but was surprised that two hours of continuous play was not wholly uncomfortable. What I did notice was that I was not accurate at all and muffed a couple things lacking the finesse that regularly playing provides. I guess that playing every day for years gave me a reprieve as my callouses were relatively intact even after almost 2 weeks away from the instrument.
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Old 12-29-2018, 12:21 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by KarenB View Post
Any tricks you've learned along the way to breakthrough resistance and prevent it from coming back?
Hi Karen...

Sometimes I'll force myself to play with a friend, or invent an assignment I have to get done (like writing a backing track for a video).

Often I give it a few days and I'm back in the saddle. Playing well it's not always rewarding or pleasant...Sometimes it's work. If I treat it that way, I act more responsibly.


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Old 12-29-2018, 11:15 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Golffishny View Post
We used to use super glue on our fingers to cover cuts while bowling.
+1

I remember those days too. The thumb was the trouble maker for me.
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Old 12-30-2018, 07:06 AM
KarenB KarenB is offline
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Quote:
Playing well it's not always rewarding or pleasant...Sometimes it's work. If I treat it that way, I act more responsibly.
lj, that is so true. Thanks for the reminder.

Vindibona, I find that too. Playing with others is a motivator, and having a guitar out and not in the case is a help too.

Funny how we sometimes need a "push" to do what we love.

Thanks to all for your thoughts.
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Old 01-06-2019, 09:13 AM
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jgmaute jgmaute is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by KarenB View Post
I have barely picked up my guitar to play it in a few weeks. I starting playing today, and my guitar is punishing me by giving me pain in my fingertips where my callouses once were.

I have for some reason, been in "resistance" mode. Does that ever happen to you? In my heart I want to make music but sometimes i'm resisting. The cure it seems, is just to do it, rusty playing, pain and all. Once I'm playing again, I'm a happier human.

Any tricks you've learned along the way to breakthrough resistance and prevent it from coming back?
Karen I’ve been unable to play for 6 weeks or more three times during the last 2 1/2 years due to injuries. Each time when I’m able to play again my go to “gold” is Rock Tips, a brush-on liquid. I also recommend Rock Tips to my beginning guitar and ukulele students. While it seems expensive per ounce one bottle lasts forever and is really worth it.

Keep on playing! Joan
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Old 01-06-2019, 09:34 AM
jaymarsch jaymarsch is offline
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I totally hear you, Karen. I can be going along with playing my guitar daily and then life can intervene and it is like having to stop while bicycling uphill. Really hard to get going again. I have used a variety of methods to get back on track including pulling out a DVD lesson or a prompt from one of my songwriting mentors.
Sometimes a break is a good thing but if I go for more than a week, my fingers really feel it.
Good to know that it happens to other folks too.

Best,
Jayne
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