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View Full Version : Enforced break from strumming - How do I stay sane?



Ben_H
07-26-2012, 10:31 PM
So I have tennis elbow which precedes my uke habit by about two weeks. I caused it by shifting an awful lot of woodchip with a small spade, one-handed in case anyone wants to know. I've tried to rest it and from what the doctor says the uke strumming shoudn't affect it however, three months later it is getting worse not better.

I've resigned myself to not strummming for 6 weeks but will go nuts if I cannot play and feel I will lose all the progress with playing I have made.

I've started finger picking but although this is different muscle groups my arm and elbow still aches. Could just be lazy muscles getting an unexpected workout overlaying the existing problem but not sure whether this is a good substitute for strumming. I'm also not sure about doing single down strums with the thumb

Can anyone suggest alternatives where I can still learn and practice new chords, progressions and still get my weekly uke club fix? If not 6 weeks is going to be an awfully long time and no guarantee it will fix the problem anyway.

Sven-Uke
07-26-2012, 10:44 PM
Bad to hear that.

Can you ask anybody in the house to strum while you play the chords?
Or tune the uke to a chord and strum with your other hand?

Get well soon!

Ben_H
07-26-2012, 11:50 PM
Who do you think I am, WOTE?

Sven-Uke
07-27-2012, 12:04 AM
Who do you think I am, WOTE?

LOL!

But seriously, get well soon!

1931jim
07-27-2012, 02:44 AM
Perhaps this is a good time to learn the fretboard. I know it is my biggest weakness. I always play and sing so I've been lazy myself at learning the fretboard.

luluwrites
07-27-2012, 02:53 AM
Perhaps this is a good time to learn the fretboard. I know it is my biggest weakness. I always play and sing so I've been lazy myself at learning the fretboard.

To that end, I've been having fun with this little game (www.musictheory.net/exercises/fretboard).

Uncle Rod Higuchi
07-27-2012, 08:25 AM
perhaps its time to work on your voice with slower songs. down strum with your thumb, but not vigorously, just enough to maintain the slower rhythm and to focus on the melodies. :)

keep uke'in',

rem50
07-27-2012, 08:46 AM
That's a real good idea.

perhaps its time to work on your voice with slower songs. down strum with your thumb, but not vigorously, just enough to maintain the slower rhythm and to focus on the melodies. :)

keep uke'in',

1931jim
07-27-2012, 09:01 AM
To that end, I've been having fun with this little game (www.musictheory.net/exercises/fretboard).
Thank you luluwrites, I have never come across "this little game" before. Regards. Jim.

ChrisRCovington
07-27-2012, 09:42 AM
Time to learn how to build ukuleles. Start spending all your free UU time in the luthier section. :)

ukulelepuapua
07-27-2012, 02:04 PM
You could make your uke a lefty!! (or righty if your a lefty!) The first fully ambidextrous ukulele player?

jackwhale
07-27-2012, 02:30 PM
I have periodic arthritis which affects my playing. I usually play more harmonica and try to learn scales so that I can play along with my uke when the pain goes away. And one can always learn more complex rhythms. (I'm assuming you can still tap with your left hand)

Ben_H
07-27-2012, 09:13 PM
You could make your uke a lefty!! (or righty if your a lefty!) The first fully ambidextrous ukulele player?

Unfortunately I think I'm ambisinisterous :)

I'll try the thumb downstrumb. Singing is good, One of the reasons I bought a baritone (but by no means the only one) is so that when I sing at home I can play soprano chords on the baritone and have the tune in a register more suited to my voice.

Thanks for the suggestions

I'd love to have a go at making an ukulele but was rubbish at school in woodwork. I also suspect I would need a lot of equipment and the last thing I need at the moment is another hobby with expensive equipment. ;)

TheCraftedCow
07-27-2012, 09:15 PM
Would it be blasphemy to question if you would consider a different tuning and laying it across your lap as slack key? If so, what about turn your hand palm up and play strum from the side of the little finger with only movement from the wrist? Do you play sitting or standing? Strap or no strap?

Ben_H
07-30-2012, 08:20 PM
Would it be blasphemy to question if you would consider a different tuning and laying it across your lap as slack key? If so, what about turn your hand palm up and play strum from the side of the little finger with only movement from the wrist? Do you play sitting or standing? Strap or no strap?

I'd be happy to try anything at this stage as long as it doesn't cost me anymore money :) Before I start searching could you recommend any good websites to start on?

CHeers

Ben

kissing
07-31-2012, 05:07 AM
You'll just have to learn to play the uke like this guy plays guitar:



http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=aTAKOS9kzGA
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=aTAKOS9kzGA

Cornfield
07-31-2012, 05:11 AM
Hammerons and pulloffs

cheekmeat
07-31-2012, 07:30 AM
Hammerons and pulloffs

I agree heartily with this! Strengthen up that left hand and see what is possible without strumming.

Also that fret/note game is fantastic!

sukie
07-31-2012, 07:40 AM
So I have tennis elbow which precedes my uke habit by about two weeks. I caused it by shifting an awful lot of woodchip with a small spade, one-handed in case anyone wants to know. I've tried to rest it and from what the doctor says the uke strumming shoudn't affect it however, three months later it is getting worse not better.

I've resigned myself to not strummming for 6 weeks but will go nuts if I cannot play and feel I will lose all the progress with playing I have made.

I've started finger picking but although this is different muscle groups my arm and elbow still aches. Could just be lazy muscles getting an unexpected workout overlaying the existing problem but not sure whether this is a good substitute for strumming. I'm also not sure about doing single down strums with the thumb

Can anyone suggest alternatives where I can still learn and practice new chords, progressions and still get my weekly uke club fix? If not 6 weeks is going to be an awfully long time and no guarantee it will fix the problem anyway.
Sorry to hear. BUT -- rest or it'll get worse. Then itll be even longer.

How about using your time to learn some theory?

Ben_H
07-31-2012, 08:08 AM
Sorry to hear. BUT -- rest or it'll get worse. Then itll be even longer.

How about using your time to learn some theory?

I've had a classical music training in piano, clarinet and percussion so the theory is there, though somewhat rusty.

I think the hammer ons and pull offs will have to do :)