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> Developing Picking Hand Speed
purple hayes
post Apr 3 2009, 01:28 PM
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I think the biggest piece of the puzzle in working up some decent alternate picking chops is my right hand. My forearm seems to get too tense at my top speeds and my top speed just isn't that speedy.

What can I do to over-come this?

If your response if "relax your forearm", please try to provide specific ways to do this. wink.gif

edited to add: if you can provide links to previous threads about this same topic, that will work too. I'm sure it's been covered before. (I just can't ever find anything using the search function here)

This post has been edited by purple hayes: Apr 3 2009, 01:38 PM

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post Apr 3 2009, 01:39 PM
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One tip can give you is to play tremelo picking on one string start out slow and try to relax your entire body while playing. Increase the step and continue to stay relaxed and when you come to to piont where you cant realx any more becasu it goes to fast thats you potential picking speed(As Micheal Angelo Batio would say) you ant ick realaxed above this speed......

Now you need to work on lower speeds untill you can play relaxed on higher speeds....

Hope it helps

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Aleksander Sukov...
post Apr 3 2009, 02:04 PM
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Of course, relax your forearm, but how?

Practice this little exercise: , or something similar.
Apply this exercise up to 12th fret. But like this: start with a low tempo, like 40, 50, or 60. While practicing, concentrate on your picking hand, on your forearm and your wrist, try to release it, the only tension should be in your fingers, to hold the pick. then when you are able to play four notes loud, four notes palm muted (piano) precisely and in tempo, without tension in your picking hand at low BPM, add 5 BPM to your metronome. Always add by 5 or 10 (if you are confident), but ONLY when you are sure that your picking hand is absolutely relaxed. Using this method you should be able to 'teach' your picking hand to relax at higher speed. This principle could be applied to the left hand as well.

If you have any more questions, feel free to ask.

Hope this helps.

Cheers! smile.gif


This post has been edited by Aleksander Sukovic: Apr 3 2009, 02:05 PM

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post Apr 3 2009, 02:39 PM
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Cool idea Alexsander. I have been working on this problem for a while as well. When I find I am tensing too much on something I am working on, I switch to something I am really familiar with and reduce the speed by about 25% which allows me to go into a really relaxed mode of playing. Once there, I switch back to something I am working on (again starting with a more relaxed speed) trying to keep that relaxed mode of playing. Then slowly ratchet up the playing.

You will probably have to work out a routine that helps you specifically so try some variations and see how it works for you.

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Ivan Milenkovic
post Apr 3 2009, 07:44 PM
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When I see mu fingers tense up during some intensive workouts, I generally take a break with that exercise, and move on to something completely different for 4-5 minutes, like playing some chords, or arpeggio shapes. Then, when I come back to that same speed, I find that my fingers are not tensing that much, so I can push the boundaries a bit further. But there is a limit mate, there will always be one, so when you see that you really cannot go any further at certain tempo, just put away that exercise and let your muscle memory to settle for a few days. Then you will push it even more, and with patience and slowly, you will get where you want.

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