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Author Topic: barre chords strength  (Read 171 times)
DaveyO
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« on: November 02, 2018, 10:51:16 PM »

Need more strength in my left hand for longer term chording
What an I do?
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broKen
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« Reply #1 on: November 02, 2018, 11:27:35 PM »

Keep playing them. Don't over do it. By the end of a song in F, my hand is usually hurting.
Be aware when you're squeezing too hard.
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rockstar_not
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« Reply #2 on: November 03, 2018, 12:49:38 AM »

Have you had better strength in the past?
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« Reply #3 on: November 03, 2018, 11:49:21 AM »

Hopefully not stating the obvious...  check your setup?

Ed
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skyline
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« Reply #4 on: November 06, 2018, 04:09:32 PM »

If it is just strength you need - you'll just need to keep at it. Are you sure it's just a question of strength?

As Ed said, assuming your guitar is well setup

As rockstar_not points out - are there any other special considerations (accident, injury, prior-condition, etc)?

Unless you have very large hands with long, flexible fingers your hand/arm/guitar-body position probably needs to change when you’re playing barre chords

Maybe it’s because so many players are right handed, but most players position the guitar to favour the picking hand - even though the harder tasks usually fall to the fretting hand.

   - think about which muscles are doing the work, and how the tendons and bones relate to those muscles

   - a heavily bent wrist restricts the thumb/index ability to clench - usually you need to drop your shoulder a bit, or re-position your arm from your normal chording position

   - the most common problem is thumb position - most people find keeping their thumb “tip” positioned behind the neck, between the second and last joint of the index gives them better grip

(sometimes it helps to imagine the thumb is running on a track straight up the middle of the neck’s back - this is trickier if you’re playing on a neck with a deep-v profile)

                   - how far onto the neck is your index finger
         - are the joints of the index finger falling on or beside strings
         - can you keep your index finger flat
         - can you keep your index parallel to the frets

Most players have a very different left hand position when playing partial barres

Also if you look at how most classical players sit - you’ll get some ideas on how to optimize the position of your left hand for doing barre chords. Classical guitar arrangements use a lot of full and partial barres - there’s a reason they use those stools.
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tlp2
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« Reply #5 on: November 07, 2018, 01:03:54 PM »

^ this
Watch a couple of Dale's - maplebaby - videos on here.
His technique is really good and you can see how he holds his guitar and what his hands are doing. 
Holding your guitar in that optimum position really helps get your hands at the right angle,
and I enjoy his videos anyway.
Thanks Dale! 
:)
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ST
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« Reply #6 on: November 07, 2018, 09:01:45 PM »

Need more strength in my left hand for longer term chording
What an I do?

You've received some great advice and information so far.

Are you playing solo or with others?

Are you strumming or picking?

What style of music are you playing?

How long have you been working on your barre chords?

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skyline
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« Reply #7 on: November 10, 2018, 11:38:13 PM »

You've received some great advice and information so far.

Are you playing solo or with others?

Are you strumming or picking?

What style of music are you playing?

How long have you been working on your barre chords?


Great questions, which effectivdly sum up a question of musicality that I totally overlooked:

 - it is rare that a human-fingered barre chord needs to be so well executed that every string sounds perfectly

   ie   it's too easy to equate a barre with a capo (the terms are easily confused, especially for thise of us raised with english as our mother tongue)

Most often a barre is presenting harmonic or melodic support for only two or three strings. Those strings may be on opposite sides of the neck, and it is not alwqhs that a barre has to allow every string to voice cleanly
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