Jump to content
Triumph_Rock

Bass guitar selection?

Recommended Posts

Right guys, 

I want to pick the brains of bass chatters. 

Awhile back I bought a new Musicman Stirling Sub 4 HH. I love the tones it produces, and the selector switch function. But I've hardly played it.

However when I play sitting down, I get bad pain in my right shoulder. The pain will become so bad that I will stop playing. 

Has anybody had similar issues with any bass guitar? Where your right shoulder became so painful that you couldn't play? 

Did you find a solution? Or was it a case of finding a bass guitar that doesn't cause this pain?

I'm guessing different bass guitars, with different body designs is the answer?

David 

 

Edited by Triumph_Rock

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Do you play with the bass sat on your right thigh ?

Try playing with it on a strap with the bass in your normal standing position, legs open with both feet flat on the floor so you are not twisted or forcing your shoulder up or forward

There's a good posture/injury video course on Scott's Bass lessons where the guy who is a professional musicians' osteopath and bass player lays down some guidance, most of which Scott doesn't himself practice, the look on his face a few times when he realises he does and has been teaching it it wrong is priceless. I figured it out for myself as I found trying to play with instrument on right thigh neck 45' to the body was twisting my spine and giving me a pain in the side or shoulder and causing me to bend right wrist excessively

 

  • Like 4

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Thanks @Aidan63 . I will try what you have suggested. At least for now I have my Westfield EB3, I can play, which causes little pain after a long time of playing. But I don't want to be limited to one type of bass for the rest of my life!

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I play sitting and standing, and when sitting my strap is the same position/height  as when I’m standing, i don’t think it’s the bass i would say it’s your posture, and it could also be that your maybe tensing your right shoulder, relax and find a comfortable position 🙂

  • Like 2

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
5 minutes ago, Reggaebass said:

I play sitting and standing, and when sitting my strap is the same position/height  as when I’m standing, i don’t think it’s the bass i would say it’s your posture, and it could also be that your maybe tensing your right shoulder, relax and find a comfortable position 🙂

That's kind of what I am hoping. But when I play my EB3 I can play for a long time , with little to no pain. The EB3 being alot thinner body and different shape of course.

I really hope a different posture may help. As the 38mm nut on the Stirling Sub4 is alot easier for me to play well.

 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

To get your arm around this particular body, you might be slightly raising your shoulder to get your hand to where it's used to being.

Sitting down, your options for tweaking your posture are a bit limited, but perhaps have a go at rethinking your posture when sitting down, getting your shoulder and neck comfortable and relaxed first, and then working down the arm.

(Maybe at the end of all that your hand will be unhappy instead....😬)

  • Like 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Sitting down playing can make us evaluate our gear. I bought a cracking Gibson Les Paul but sitting down it just doesn’t work for me, so have bought an SG to replace it which works much better for me.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I currently have a trapped nerve in my neck which sends a shooting pain down my left side...again a bad posture condition.

As I'm getting older I'm finding that more things are going wrong with me...

  • Like 1
  • Sad 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Erm... left shoulder, in my case, and I am right-handed.

About 15 years ago I bought a Yamaha BEX4 bass. It was in blue sunburst and was fantastic in every way and a good fit for the band I was in, both sonically and visually. First time I used it standing was when we had a three hour rehearsal. No issues at the time, but when I woke up the next day I could barely move my left arm. The design of the bass pushed the neck out more than usual... even though I am tall it was too much of a reach. Sadly, it had to go.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Go and see a physio. (Easier said than done at the moment).

There's an excellent chance that the pain you experience while playing is the symptom rather than the cause.

A few years ago I started experiencing sharp shoulder pain, triggered by long walks, of all things.

I went to the GP who referred me to the physio, we never got to the bottom of what was causing the problem other than general 'poor posture' but he gave me some simple exercises to do, focusing on the shoulders and ,despite my low expectations, within a few weeks of the exercise regime the pain vanished and I can walk as far as I like now without problems.

Point being that the long walks were never the fundamental cause of the problem, they were just exacerbating an issue that was primarily being caused by something else.

Edited by Cato
  • Like 3

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Might be worth a chat with an Alexander Technique practitioner. My understanding, is not my direct experience, is that the AT is all about getting your posture right.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Are you playing plectrum or fingers? You should try the opposite of what ever you’re doing and also try different positions. Sitting is rarely the best and when standing having a bass too low can cause problems. The scoop on the back is there for a reason, tuck it well into the body.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Getting the right chair made a big difference for me, I had a comfy one but it made me slouch a bit which wasn’t good, I’ve now got a decent office chair with the arm rests removed and it’s fully adjustable, so I sit more upright.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I get some shoulder pain playing my cheap Cruiser jazz bass when I play it without resting my wrist on top of the body.
I don't know how much of it's actually due to the body shape, it's not weight I think..my Harley Benton is probably twice the weight and feels fine.

Without analyzing it I'd guess the issue for me is the playing position, my newest Sire jazz has an identical body shape to the Cruiser, weighs more but so far hasn't caused any shoulder pain.
With the newer one it feels more comfortable having my right hand completely free floating instead of anchored to a pickup/pick-guard, I think that's stopping me locking my shoulder up so much.

Another thing which may or may not be linked is overall fitness, at first I was getting back pain which gradually ended in neck pain and a headache as I got more and more tense. I started doing more exercises to strengthen my back and core muscles (more for work than bass) which seemed to help out a huge amount. As overall strength increased I was able to relax a lot more instead of straining to keep my back, arms and shoulders in position.

  • Like 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Would just like to thank everybody for the replies here. I have implemented some of them, even though I am away from home, and have traveled with my EB-3L. I get no pain in my right shoulder at all at the moment.

The main difference I've made is the fact both my feet/legs are now place symmetrical on the ground whilst I play, I no longer cross my legs as before.

Can't wait to try this with my Stingray Sub 4 HH when I get home.

Edited by Triumph_Rock
  • Like 2

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Join the conversation

You can post now and register later. If you have an account, sign in now to post with your account.

Guest
Reply to this topic...

×   Pasted as rich text.   Paste as plain text instead

  Only 75 emoji are allowed.

×   Your link has been automatically embedded.   Display as a link instead

×   Your previous content has been restored.   Clear editor

×   You cannot paste images directly. Upload or insert images from URL.


  • Recently Browsing   0 members

    No registered users viewing this page.



×
×
  • Create New...