How much tension on the thumb?

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twistedblues
Posts: 181
Joined: Sun Feb 05, 2017 7:48 pm

How much tension on the thumb?

Post by twistedblues » Sat Feb 18, 2017 5:23 pm

How much pressure should you apply with the thumb when playing in the 4 finger position? And what do you do with the thumb position when you play open string notes?

souldier
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Joined: Tue Dec 08, 2015 4:45 pm

Re: How much tension on the thumb?

Post by souldier » Sun Feb 19, 2017 12:29 am

Thumb pressure varies depending on what you are doing, but generally I put as little as is required. When doing scales for example, I put almost zero pressure on the thumb and use the thumb more as a guide for stability. In most cases as much as possible I try to put the pressure on my biceps and arms rather than using all the strength in the thumb to fret the strings. This will really prevent your thumb from fatiguing and getting strained, especially when doing barre chords.
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Julian Ward
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Joined: Thu Feb 09, 2017 9:22 am
Location: UK, Ringwood

Re: How much tension on the thumb?

Post by Julian Ward » Sun Feb 19, 2017 12:50 am

The thumb is often overlooked by students but it's position is critical.. In answer to your other question - the thumb remains in position during open notes with the fretting fingers lifting accordingly. The hand should stay as still as possible with no repositioning of the hand at all unless it is physically required to move to play the notes. Most problems I have with any beginners struggling are to do with the left hand thumb.

twistedblues
Posts: 181
Joined: Sun Feb 05, 2017 7:48 pm

Re: How much tension on the thumb?

Post by twistedblues » Sun Feb 19, 2017 2:32 pm

Very important

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BugDog
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Location: Northern KY USA

Re: How much tension on the thumb?

Post by BugDog » Tue Feb 21, 2017 7:44 pm

I question that there is single set amount of tension that the thumb is to use. For me, the thumb tension and position changes almost constantly depending on what the fingers are doing. I'm in close agreement to what souldier said.

For open strings, I suppose thumb position and placement would be influenced by what you just played before the open string and what comes next.
BugDog
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clivepics
Posts: 299
Joined: Wed Jul 25, 2012 7:59 am
Location: Bath, England

Re: How much tension on the thumb?

Post by clivepics » Mon Mar 13, 2017 7:10 am

use as little tension as possible to avoid ahcing if you play for a long time.

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