Might have to give up 8 strings?!

Discussion in 'Extended Range Guitars' started by Jeries, Mar 4, 2021.

  1. soap_opera_phantom

    soap_opera_phantom bronze sound and pointy guitars

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    Not sure if this helps, but I have a device called a "Rolflex" that is designed to alleviate tendinitis and things of that same ilk by pinpointing tight spots on the forearms, elbows, etc. I don't want to encourage anything that might hurt rather than help, and YMMV, but for me, it has been extremely helpful in mitigating issues with tendinitis.
     
  2. Thaeon

    Thaeon Cosmic Question Asker

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    I had tons of wrist issues when I had my first couple 8 strings. They were all Carvin DC800s. Their necks are thicker than Ibanez and ESP guitars. But not really thick necks by any stretch. I had some serious concerns that these issues would return once I started playing my Oni regularly. They did not. I get less fatigue from playing that guitar than I do from 6 strings. Might be how you're holding the guitar. I tend to play 8 string in classical position and 6 with the guitar sitting on my right leg. Try to find a position to play in where your wrist bends the least. If you can keep your the back of your hand and your forearm in a straight line or as close to it as possible, you'll have less issues.
     
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  3. LordIronSpatula

    LordIronSpatula A series of interconnected fortune cookies.

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    I come from the classical music field where discussions such as this are a lot more common. Because of low action and low string tension, it's possible to play a typical electric guitar for a long time with sub-optimal technique (in terms of ergonomics) and still get good results. But with a more physically demanding instrument like a contrabass set up for orchestra playing, you can easily injure yourself in your first weeks with the instrument if you aren't coached on ergonomics. So among classical string players, including good classical guitarists, there's a lot of discussion about using larger muscle groups in place of smaller ones, and using the weight of our bodies instead of muscle tension.

    The muscles in your forearm where you're experiencing issues are the ones that tense/curl your fingers and thumb. To me, this sounds like an issue that could be improved by being intentional about using more left arm weight and releasing pressure from your thumb. Good classical string players (classical guitarists included) only use the thumb to stabilize the hand, not as a source of fretting pressure. The fretting/stopping power comes from the weight of the left arm and from the more powerful muscles of the back. I know this might sound crazy to some readers here but it really works and makes multiple improvements to left hand ergonomics and efficiency. Check out classical guitarist David Leisner's book "Playing With Ease" for in depth discussion of these concepts applied to guitar.

    Optimizing technique is a lifelong journey IMO. I experienced similar problems when I jumped from a standard classical guitar to seven and eight strings, then again when I began playing lutes which have cumbersome round bodies in addition to chunky necks. In each case I found I that in response to a more demanding instrument, I was just adding tension to my existing technique. Once I sorted out new ergonomic postures for my body and hands on these instruments, I was able to heal and play them without pain.

    With good ergonomics, I've seen petite women shred on upright basses that made them look tiny. I suspect there is a solution that will allow you to play eight string again. A more ergonomic instrument could certainly help but I suspect the real cause of your trouble would be better addressed by adjusting technique.
     
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  4. Thaeon

    Thaeon Cosmic Question Asker

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    I used to teach guitar students this. If there is tension you need to stop. Analyse where the tension is, and why, and address that. Guitar should be loose. Light touch. Not gritting your teeth. Finesse, not brute force. Take intermittent breaks too. Play for 40 minutes and take 20 minutes off or whatever.
     
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  5. Jeries

    Jeries Banned

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    basically you and thaeon are saying go Oni or go bust as I wanted to from the start lol

    I can’t handle the B8, so I’m going to have to sell it - do you think $3500 is a good price ? (Looking at reverb?) or whatever? I def have to sell the B8 and only place I can ask for help is here

    sorry guys, it is not like anymore embarrassment knowing others have had the issue - now it’s more of a monetary problem lol
     
  6. Thaeon

    Thaeon Cosmic Question Asker

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    Don't be embarrassed by it. Not every human body is the same. We all have different physical limitations. That said, the Oni Essi is designed for a smaller person who doesn't have large hands. I love mine. I've said it before. I have to work harder on my 6 string than I do my Oni.
     
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