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hand injuries

Silenced Fred

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Man, I'm a klutz.


When I was in high school shop class, I caught a couple fingers in a belt sander and ripped out the fingernails on my index and middle finger. I couldn't play for about 2 months or so.


A few years ago I slammed my fingers in a car door. -3 days before I had a gig. My fingernails on my ring finger and index finger turned black, and wound up falling off. That was painful as hell. That gig sucked.

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Try playing the bass after you slice the tips of your middle and index with a razor knife....I think I used duct tape and vodka on that gig.



Right middle forearm.


Toughen up ladies.


Ouch. [-X

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After a high school training injury left me doing everything left handed including buttering bread, I started working on alternate ways of doing a lotta stuff.


As a finger picker I've practiced even pickin' with just the pinkie. Even flatpicking with alternative ways to hold the pick without the thumb. Left hand by open tunings that even a wrist brace and tubing sorta deal could either make work bottlenecking or pulling down into basic chords. Heck, Django did pretty well with not so many fingers. Relearning without an entire hand could be difficult and would require an entirely different approach, depending on the specific situation.


Yeah, it hurts to play before a hand injury is healed.



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No problem with my hands but I have a replaced disc on my neck (C7) and a plate with 4 screws. The pinched nerves go down to my fretting hand.


A couple of weeks ago I hurt myself shoveling coals when we were smoking a full pig, my fingers got a little lethargic after that.


All and all I am glad I can play and that playing is like therapy, I suck but I enjoy the hell out of it.

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RE musicians not doing "hand" sports...


I dunno about now, but in the 1970s I knew lots of pros who did martial arts. Not just guitar guys, either. Seems to me it'd be worse for a reed guy to have either hand outa action.


I know a lotta old time blues guys and radio era musicians of all styles who had hands with scars on them you couldn't believe. Huge fingers from younger years of "outside work." I knew one radio era jazz 5-string banjo/guitar picker whose fingers were so short and thick I dunno how he played - and he was the first to tell it was farm work when he was a kid. Yet he was so relaxed and quick and... I'd love to have half the talent and skill.


(Parenthetically no wonder he felt comfortable with an "ax-handle" round guitar neck. <chuckle> And strength for guitars with heavy strings and a lousy action? Heck, these folks could bend horseshoes with their fingers.)


My major hand injuries came not from "sports," but from computer mousing and "everyday" stuff that shouldn't be a problem but became one. Heck, my hands have hurt more from hauling gig equipment onto a stage than .... well, stuff that even took skin off various portions of the hands in "sport" activities.


Don't get me wrong, I'm not advocating one damaging one's hands. Quite the contrary. Just pointing out that apparent risk and real risk can be two different things.



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Agreed that what is right for me is not right for everybody.


Agreed that hand injuries can and do happen because of things other than sports.


Agreed that many people can overcome many hand injuries and become a great player (think Django).


But on the other hand (no pun intended)...


I once knew a pianist who had a softball stop his career. Completely lost the use of a finger and the doctor said it would eventually have to be amputated.


Why put your hands in a situation where there is an unnecessary risk?


Many people have automobile related injuries, but you have to get from one place to another. That makes it a necessary risk. You can minimize the risk by practicing defensive driving.


Many people who play sports end up with sports related injuries. You do not have to play sports. That makes it an unnecessary risk in my opinion.

Fred61 just hurt his thumb in a football game bad enough to come here for help.


B@sshole just reported the following injuries playing football:

Left hand: Jammed Ring Finger, Sprained Thumb

Right Hand: Jammed Wee Finger (Pinky), Smashed Pointer Finger, Jammed Thumb


Either one could have had a finger broken. Hopefully they will both heal quickly and completely.


If one wants to play sports, realize that nothing more than a freak hop of a softball or a bad fall can immediately end your ability to play music well. The difference between a healthy hand and a hand injury is an infinitesimally small second. If the game is worth that risk, go for it. I don't have the right to tell anyone how to run his/her life. But for me, when the softball game or the basketball game or the football game starts up, I'll be on the sidelines and not on the field.



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The deal is that I agree on weekend type sports, Notes...


Sound mind, sound body, proper body motions... all are important for good musicianship from my perspective. That's easier to do with some sort of fitness program. Ted Nugent, like or dislike the guy and his music, told me in a bow hunting interview for a news story once that he doesn't do drugs and works to stay in shape to do his stage stuff. I don't know if the bow came before or after guitar, but the guy had quite strong hands for guitar picking.


Problems arise in "sports" from improper body movements and timing. It's also one reason a lot of the old "masters" trained people in all kinds of activities from music to western fencing in a far different way.


But no, I wouldn't play baseball, softball or football at this point for all the tea in China. I didn't after I hit my mid 20s for reasons you stated. Fencing, martial arts "forms" (kata, poom-se, whatever you wanna call them) are excellent.


I'm also concerned that some people will continue to use guitar technique that hurts, and I don't mean people practicing more than usual and having their fingies hurt from the strings. I've also seen really stupid stage "accidents."


Myself, I'm dead serious, I've been hurt far more moving band equipment or overconcentrating on photojournalism needs than safety, than in "sports" I've done. That latter doesn't count unsupervised overdosing on weight training for fencing in high school that severely weakened my right wrist for life... @#$%@#$



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Just to clarify, I wasn't *****ing or complaining about my injury


It hurt, and I just couldn't play for 2 days


It just got me thinking, what if I really hurt my hand bad? What would I do to grow around that?


I was looking for stories of people who did, if anyone, and see how they overcame it


I am not saying my injury is the end all be all, most badass injury of all time


Geez :D

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