stiff fingers and wrists

Discussion in 'Technique and Posture' started by chensa, Jan 12, 2015.

  1. chensa

    chensa

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    So I play and practice ALOT.

    I've noticed that my right hand/wrist is starting to feel heavy and slow. Doesn't hurt, just feels like it doesn't want to move much.

    Any idea what might be going on? I thought carpel but it doesn't hurt....
    ....maybe it's something unrelated to my playing....yikes...
     
    chensa, Jan 12, 2015
    #1
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  2. chensa

    happyrat1 Destroyer of Eardrums!!!

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    There's such a thing as overdoing it.

    Here's a good thread on exercises to help avoid carpal tunnel.

    https://www.keyboardforums.com/threads/precaution-of-finger-and-hand-for-new-learner.25422/

    As for what's slowing down your hand? Old age? Muscle bound fingers? Arthritis? Could be anything.

    Definitely a good idea not to overdo the practice though.

    Generally an hour or so per day is adequate for most people.

    Do you play professionally? How many hours per day? How often? How old are you?

    Gary
     
    happyrat1, Jan 12, 2015
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  3. chensa

    chensa

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    Thanks for the info.

    Yes I play professionally and I'm CONSTANTLY having to learn new songs or review alot of past material...I wish I had a photographic memory. Anyway, there are times that I can practice up to 3 to even 6 hours a day. Sometimes I take the day off...

    I'm 52
     
    chensa, Jan 12, 2015
    #3
  4. chensa

    happyrat1 Destroyer of Eardrums!!!

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    I'd suggest visiting your doctor or a physiotherapist. It's probably just father time catching up with you though. Between slowing reflexes and repetitive stress injuries there's only so much flesh and bone is capable of.

    Gary
     
    happyrat1, Jan 12, 2015
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  5. chensa

    Fin

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    The other day I practiced for about three hours, and my hand is feeling stiff. The only thing that temporarily makes it better is to practice more. I recommend just take a break for a few days if you can. :confused:
     
    Fin, Jan 25, 2015
    #5
  6. chensa

    spdam

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    Pure Organic African Shea Butter can be helpful to use on your hands when not playing. I bought "arthritis gloves" which are said to improve circulation. They are a very thin material (cotton stretch?) and they are somewhat fingerless. They feel good, snug, warm and you can do some playing with them.
     
    spdam, Jan 29, 2015
    #6
  7. chensa

    Skyjumper

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    Having arthritis now, I found that when I played regularly my hands were not as stiff as they are without. Hand position is key. Always have your fingertips lower than your wrist. If you are sitting to low, your wrists will bend up and this will cause the carpal syndrome. I have played since I was 5 (58 now) and have never had an issue thanks to my teacher smacking my wrists until I got it right. Thanks Teacher! You can get a topical NSAID Cream that works wonders such as Voltaren Gel. I have a compound pharmacy make mine on prescription.
     
    Skyjumper, Aug 3, 2016
    #7
  8. chensa

    happyrat1 Destroyer of Eardrums!!!

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    I'm pushing 60 myself in a couple of months and arthritis runs in my family.

    So far my fingers aren't affected, but my wrists are beginning to feel the occasional twinge.

    Best advice I can give is to keep your joints warm and not to overdo it with practices.

    As for topical creams and external gadgets? It's a medically proven fact that NO external remedy has any therapeutic affect on arthritis. All they do is irritate the skin chemically to induce a nerve illusion of heat in the affected area.

    You'd be better off plugging in a heating pad and resting your hands under it instead.

    There's no shortage of charlatans out there willing to part desperate sufferers from their hard earned money.

    Gary ;)
     
    happyrat1, Aug 4, 2016
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  9. chensa

    Groovejones

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    When I was in my 20's I had the coolest most awesome piano teacher. Here is what I learned that saved me years later when I got a house gig playing 4 hours every day.

    Important! Adjust the height of your bench or (if you play standing up) your keyboard, so that your wrists are as unbent as possible. if you sit too high, your wrist is bent with knuckles above your wrists (picture a cat trying to strike with its claws). Too low and your wrists are bent the other way (picture a dog sitting up and begging.) In either of those cases your tendons have to go around a corner to pull your fingers closed (which is the keyboard players main action.) The resulting inflammation of the tendons can become chronic and you will have to quit for a long time.

    In addition, try to relax the arms as much as possible especially when playing loud, fast, or most especially when playing loud AND fast. Use relaxation and the weight of your arms to create volume, not the tension of a rigid arm striking. This is the condensed reader's digest version of most basic Arrau DaSilva technique. The most natural ergonomic hand motion is to grasp. if you use the grasping action instead of the striking action, you can eventually play all day without injury from impact. If you strike something while your arm is tense you create the most classic scenario for "Tennis Elbow" or tendonitis. This begins with a tired low-energy feeling in the hand and arm motions. Rest and relax!
     
    Groovejones, Aug 6, 2016
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  10. chensa

    chensa

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    The problem is that I have a two-tiered keyboard so many times one hand will always be at a different angle because I play bass lines on occasion. I have never heard of the Array DaSilva technique and I'm not able to locate it. Do you have a link ?
     
    chensa, Aug 6, 2016
    #10
  11. chensa

    Groovejones

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    I am not allowed to post a link since I just signed up today. Look for an article online about Arrau (not "array") and DaSilva. My teacher, German Diez, of Cuba and New York City, was a student of Claudio Arrau. His teaching didn't make me into a good or bad pianist, but years later when I really decided to put some time into my practice I became eventually good enough to get steady work. It is there that I was most benefitted because I was always relaxed and when I wasn't, i could feel what was wrong and get there.
    When I play bass lines (I love them!) I usually split my keyboard so I have only used two tiers to play both organ and piano in the same song. Usually it's the piano weighted keys that are going to require demanding physical technique. Organ accents and such being via expression pedal. Good luck and keep those shoulders down breathe deeply and smile a lot.
     
    Groovejones, Aug 6, 2016
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  12. chensa

    Rayblewit Do you think Ray blew it?

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    Hi and welcome.
    I personally have no problem with my wrists. But the knuckles are feeling the pain of arthritis terribly.
    The grasping action may be better for wrist pain but has the opposite effect on the knuckles. To allieviate my knuckle pain, I need to move the wrists up and down (just slightly) in line with the fingers. A flexible wrist will take pressure off the fingers. This allows the fingers to move more freely without over stretching and reaching for keys. Striking the keys instead of caressing the keys is better for the knuckles (less painful).
    Applying heat prior to playing (as Gary says) certainly helps.
     
    Rayblewit, Aug 6, 2016
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    happyrat1 likes this.
  13. chensa

    Oriane Lima Hold on

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    Pain:mad:
     
    Oriane Lima, Aug 7, 2016
    #13
  14. chensa

    Alchemy

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    "picture a cat trying to strike with its claws" Yes I did picture :). But happyrat may be upset.

     
    Alchemy, Aug 14, 2016
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  15. chensa

    happyrat1 Destroyer of Eardrums!!!

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    Personally I prefer the extended live version.



    Gary ;)
     
    happyrat1, Aug 14, 2016
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    Rayblewit likes this.
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