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Piwin

Posts: 3566
Joined: Feb. 9 2016
 

Friction between fingers 

There's enough friction between ami when I play that I've developed slight calluses on the side of these fingers. If I keep my hand relaxed, that's just the way my fingers go, close enough to each other that it creates friction. It occurred to me that friction like that could theoretically slow me down. Any thoughts? Would it be worth it to try and separate the fingers more so they don't rub against each other at all or should I not worry about it?

(Secretly hoping someone will say "yeah that's a huge problem, it'll slow you way down" just so I can blame my sucky picado skills on that)

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  REPORT THIS POST AS INAPPROPRIATE |  Date Dec. 13 2017 17:13:22
 
mark indigo

 

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Joined: Dec. 5 2007
 

RE: Friction between fingers (in reply to Piwin

quote:

Friction between fingers 


yeah that's a huge problem, it'll slow you way down, but there is a simple solution: vaseline your fingers - play like greased lightning!

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  REPORT THIS POST AS INAPPROPRIATE |  Date Dec. 13 2017 18:05:44
 
kitarist

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Joined: Dec. 4 2012
 

RE: Friction between fingers (in reply to Piwin

It can definitely slow you down. Not sure about forcing separation if it is not natural for your hand. But really - if you extend your arm horizontally and let your palm face the ground then do a "jazz hand" and then and completely relax your hand, are you saying that your fingers touch? Also, where are the calluses - near the fingertips or elsewhere?

You can try lubrication, as Mark says. See if it makes a positive difference.

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Konstantin
  REPORT THIS POST AS INAPPROPRIATE |  Date Dec. 13 2017 18:14:45
 
Piwin

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RE: Friction between fingers (in reply to mark indigo

quote:

play like greased lightning!


I'll have to give it a try. Up until now I've only used grease on the finger tips, not the sides, so I'll give it a try. Thanks!

@kitarist
If my hand's relaxed and open, then no my fingers don't touch. But as soon as I start closing ("making a fist") then they touch very quick. I'd say if I pull a and m even just half a centimeter towards my palm (half a centimer from "relaxed open position"), then they're already touching at the tips. Basically it's like a and i both squeeze inwards towards m. Calluses are from the the tip to the first joint between i and m, and basically the whole finger between a and m. So yeah, I get friction with any technique that requires bringing the fingers in towards the palm...so basically every technique except pulgar and abanico...

I don't think I can do much too change the movement of the fingers per se. If I do it's like I have to mix the up down movement with a sideways movement. I have noticed that it's a bit better if I stretch the pinky out, but when I do that it adds a LOT of tension in the hand.

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"Anything you do can be fixed. What you cannot fix is the perfection of a blank page. What you cannot fix is that pristine, unsullied whiteness of a screen or a page with nothing on it—because there’s nothing there to fix."
  REPORT THIS POST AS INAPPROPRIATE |  Date Dec. 13 2017 18:37:33
 
kitarist

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RE: Friction between fingers (in reply to Piwin

I see. Thanks. What about your fretting hand - it just occurred to me that if that hand can handle quite a bit of finger separation, maybe it is not so crazy to try and separate a bit more at the PIP joints (the one between the distal/tip joint and the MCP/"knuckle" joint). As far as the trajectory of the fingertips as your hand closes in a fist, I think this is normal - Kanengizer makes that point- that your fingers are typically not parallel to each other in that range but rather are like meridians on a sphere with the fingertips converging toward a "pole" point beyond them.

I am definitely not advocating changing your stroke trajectory - rather just trying to spread out your hand a bit from the PIP joints. If that feels strained though, just try lubrication.

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Konstantin
  REPORT THIS POST AS INAPPROPRIATE |  Date Dec. 13 2017 18:58:18
 
Piwin

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RE: Friction between fingers (in reply to kitarist

Thanks. I'll fiddle around a bit and see if I can come up with something. Comparing with the fretting hand has given me something to think about. Now I look like an idiot just staring at both my hands trying to figure out how they work lol

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"Anything you do can be fixed. What you cannot fix is the perfection of a blank page. What you cannot fix is that pristine, unsullied whiteness of a screen or a page with nothing on it—because there’s nothing there to fix."
  REPORT THIS POST AS INAPPROPRIATE |  Date Dec. 13 2017 20:19:31
 
Dudnote

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Joined: Nov. 13 2007
 

RE: Friction between fingers (in reply to Piwin

Do you practice finger spreading stretches?

Apparently spreading out all fingers at the same time is not a very effective stretch (although repeated rapidly as a warm up it's fine). Better to keep the fingers together and work on separating groups of finger, e.g. with all fingers together and straight separate m and a as far as you can, breath, hold, relax. Switch fingers.

Another variant is with the first knuckle totally straight but all the other knuckles curved right in so the finger tips press into the pads at the top of the palm.Now spread all your 2nd knuckles as far apart as possible.

Another trick is to find an angled rubber (eraser for our American friends - let's not get too excited here) and use it to massage in between the bones of the back of the hand. That can help free up things.

My daughter was playing violin with a bow action inspired by the windscreen wipers of a bus. I constructed a device from a coat hanger that forced her to play with a straight bow. After just 2 days her bowing was much better. You could try the action of separating fingers for arpeggios etc on the corner of you favourite bar stool if more sophisticated devices don't appeal.

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  REPORT THIS POST AS INAPPROPRIATE |  Date Dec. 13 2017 21:54:58
 
gerundino63

Posts: 1750
Joined: Jul. 11 2003
From: The Netherlands

RE: Friction between fingers (in reply to Piwin

Have you thought about the position of your total hand?

Is your thumb left from the fingers, and not “behind” the fingers?
If you have the “ideal” hand position, a pingpong ball fits in the room between the thumb and index finger.
At the place where your mouse is. (Is that an english word for that muscle?) Or thumb muscle attached to your index finger

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  REPORT THIS POST AS INAPPROPRIATE |  Date Dec. 14 2017 7:42:50
 
jalalkun

Posts: 276
Joined: May 3 2017
From: Iraq, living in Cologne, Germany

RE: Friction between fingers (in reply to Piwin

the sides of my fingers never touch. neither in arpeggio nor in tremolo.
maybe it's physiological? like, maybe it's the nature of your hands. or can you separate your fingers while clenching without major effort?

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  REPORT THIS POST AS INAPPROPRIATE |  Date Dec. 14 2017 8:06:10
 
Piwin

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RE: Friction between fingers (in reply to Dudnote

Thanks guys.
@Dudnote No I've never really done any stretches, except simple warm-up stuff. I'm a bit reluctant though, just because I know or have heard of a few people who have gone too far with that type of stuff and had to stop playing (El Viejin comes to mind). But I guess if I do it just a bit, staying balanced it probably couldn't hurt.

@gerundino63 yeah that's one of the things I'll have to fiddle around with. It might physiological like @jalalkun said. I broke pretty much every bone there is to break in my wrist when I was kid and now I'm very limited in one direction. Say if I want to put my hand horizontal with the palm up, I can't do that with my right hand. I can keep maybe 3/4 of the way there but I'm already stretching to the point that it's a bit painful. So that's my thinking now: since my relaxed hand position is already at a bit more of an angle than most people probably, maybe that's what's causing the problem. I guess I could ask you guys with "normal" hands: if you do the jazz hands thing that @kitarist was suggesting then rotate you wrist say 30 degrees inwards (bringing the thumb downwards), if you do an arpeggio motion there can you still keep your fingers apart or does that change something?

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"Anything you do can be fixed. What you cannot fix is the perfection of a blank page. What you cannot fix is that pristine, unsullied whiteness of a screen or a page with nothing on it—because there’s nothing there to fix."
  REPORT THIS POST AS INAPPROPRIATE |  Date Dec. 14 2017 10:50:22
 
estebanana

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RE: Friction between fingers (in reply to Piwin

Does this friction cause a lot of heat?

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  REPORT THIS POST AS INAPPROPRIATE |  Date Dec. 14 2017 10:59:28
 
Piwin

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Joined: Feb. 9 2016
 

RE: Friction between fingers (in reply to estebanana

You thinking that maybe my bad picado skills could become a viable alternative to coal?
Flamenco power plant: fueling the world and then some.

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"Anything you do can be fixed. What you cannot fix is the perfection of a blank page. What you cannot fix is that pristine, unsullied whiteness of a screen or a page with nothing on it—because there’s nothing there to fix."
  REPORT THIS POST AS INAPPROPRIATE |  Date Dec. 14 2017 11:26:19
 
estebanana

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RE: Friction between fingers (in reply to Piwin

I think you need to get over to the Paris Climate talks ASAP.

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  REPORT THIS POST AS INAPPROPRIATE |  Date Dec. 14 2017 12:45:07
 
kitarist

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Joined: Dec. 4 2012
 

RE: Friction between fingers (in reply to Piwin

quote:

ORIGINAL: Piwin
[...] No I've never really done any stretches, except simple warm-up stuff. I'm a bit reluctant though, just because I know or have heard of a few people who have gone too far with that type of stuff and had to stop playing (El Viejin comes to mind). But I guess if I do it just a bit, staying balanced it probably couldn't hurt.


Just don't do stretches cold (regardless of historical advice in the guitar world) - warm up your hand first with arpeggios or whatever, and only when they feel warmed up, try some of the stretches suggested.

quote:

ORIGINAL: Piwin
[...] I guess I could ask you guys with "normal" hands: if you do the jazz hands thing that @kitarist was suggesting then rotate you wrist say 30 degrees inwards (bringing the thumb downwards), if you do an arpeggio motion there can you still keep your fingers apart or does that change something?


It doesn't seem to make a difference in my case.

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Konstantin
  REPORT THIS POST AS INAPPROPRIATE |  Date Dec. 14 2017 16:49:41
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