How to relieve and prevent finger pain when you are a guitar learner

The guitar is one of the most popular instruments in the world. However, it requires a learning process during which some frustration can be felt due to the sore fingers experienced by beginners.

As in every action we perform for the first time, the body must adapt to it. Thus, when starting in the art of the guitar, the player will feel discomfort in the fingertips, due to the appearance of calluses.

Common injuries when playing guitar

The guitar is not an instrument that has very good ergonomics. Therefore, a period of adaptation is required, not only to learn to play it, but to find a position that does not mistreat the player.

To begin we must observe the correct posture when sitting, in order to avoid neck, back or waist pain. It is not uncommon for guitarists to experience various types of injuries to the wrist, elbow, or forearm.

Among the different types of injuries suffered by guitarists are the following:

In all these cases there can be tension, inflammation, pain, numbness, loss of flexibility in the hand and fingers, even spread of the ailment to the neck and back. And of course, the practice or learning of the instrument is affected.

At any age you can begin to learn to play the guitar, although children have greater ease.

Do not stop reading: Tendinitis: types and treatment.

What is the cause of finger pain when playing guitar?

If you are starting to learn the guitar, you have surely suffered it and you know what we are talking about. Definitely, finger pain is a necessary evil when you want to become a guitarist.

Now, the question is why do your fingers hurt when playing this instrument. The first reason is more than obvious, since we are not used to pressing strings.

Second, according to a study, when playing a string instrument repetitive contact can cause trauma closed. In this case, in the tissue of the fingertips, which is soft. In this way, constant pressure causes the upper layer of the skin to wear away, exposing the more sensitive dermis.

Isotonic movements of the fingers can also affect the tendons, as muscle and joint contraction and some effort are required. In both situations, pain in the fingers can occur.

Pressing the strings too hard will cause pain on the fingers, both in the tip or yolk and in the tendons and joints. For a beginner, it can be difficult to determine how hard to exert.

On the other hand, metal strings injure the fingers more than nylon strings. Also, if the strings are too tight, your fingers must press harder for a clean sound to be produced.

How long do corns take to form?

Fingertip pain is almost a rite of passage for apprentice guitarists. Over time, these bruises heal, turning into calluses that allow you to touch without discomfort.

On average, it may take 15 days to a month for corns to form on the fingertips. This in turn depends on a number of factors, such as how many days a week the person plays, the type of guitar, the type of string, and the technique.

Finally, if the person is an expert guitarist and stops playing for a while, the callus formation process takes less time once it resumes.

Do not stop reading: Medical treatment for calluses.

Tips to prevent finger pain when learning guitar

While corns are beneficial in the long run, while forming they are a real torture for the beginner. This may lead some to think about abandoning the instrument.

In this sense, pain in the fingers when learning to play guitar is inevitable, but it doesn't have to be unbearable. Here are some tips to prevent or mitigate it as much as possible.

1. Duration of the session

It is advisable, when you are starting, that you divide the practice sessions, so let them be short periods of time 5 to 10 minutes long.

You can stay that way for the first two weeks. Then you will feel a little less pain and you can increase the duration and frequency to 15 minutes, 3 times a day.

Even for expert guitarists it is advisable to rest every so often, between rehearsal sessions, to avoid conditions in the fingers and wrist, such as tendinitis or others.

2. Lightly press the strings

When practicing, if you are not surrounded by an audience, apply as little pressure as possible. In rehearsals or if you give concerts you can use more force if you need it.

On the other hand, take care of the grip on the back of the neck. Often the excess tension is due to the bad position of the wrist and the pressure of the thumb behind.

3. Use nylon ropes

It is known that it is not the same sound, depending on what you want to play. However, as an apprentice, It is recommended that you start with the nylon ones until you have corns, so you don't feel so much pain.

Remember also that old and corroded ropes wear out the buds, while new ones allow better sliding. So replace them if they already look rusty.

4. Keep your nails short

If you are right, those of the left hand, and vice versa. Keep the fingernails short of the hand that you use to step on the strings and produce the chords.

That way, the pad presses better down for a clean sound. This will also reduce the pain and you will not accidentally touch another string that you do not want.

5. Don't touch with wet hands

When you have been in the water for a long time, when bathing or being in a pool, damp skin softens a bit. Touching like this can affect the calluses formed, cracking and opening the skin.

In addition, wet fingers slip on the strings, so the pressure must be increased, with the consequences that this entails.

6. Help your corns

Also, if the person wishes, the formation of calluses can be accelerated by applying some techniques, such as drumming. As long as this doesn't cause other injuries or more pain.

Yes indeed, avoid hitting very hard or on a very hard surface. The recommended thing is a plastic card (such as a credit card) or a wooden table with a tablecloth.

7. Maintaining your instrument

If the neck is bowed or the bridge is too high, the strings will be tighter and more pressure will be required. ANDIt is important that the guitar is properly calibrated. Take her to the musical instrument workshop and have the necessary arrangements made.

The guitar is a not so ergonomic instrument. That is why you have to take care of the positions so as not to favor injuries.

How to relieve finger pain when playing guitar

When you are learning to play guitar, it is advisable that you do not continue playing if your fingers feel soreas the soft tissue damage worsens.

You should not allow, under any circumstances, the buds to break and have open wounds or blisters. This will force you to stop to wait for them to heal and will delay the process of callus formation.

If required, use a natural anesthetic, such as apple cider vinegar, immersing your fingers in a glass with this product for 1 minute after touching.

It also helps to use cold compresses, alternating with warm well as warm salted water and rubbing with alcohol. Remember that if you are going to play again you must dry your hands well.

Identify the type of pain you suffer when learning guitar

Although finger pain is normal when you are first learning to play guitar, it should not be taken lightly, as it can become a more serious problem.

This does not mean that you should stop playing, at least not definitively. If your fingers hurt, take breaks, practice less for a few days, and give your yolk time to recover and harden.

If we feel pain when touching the fingertips, it is a matter of calluses or lack of them. But if we experience pain when we claw our fingers, it is another type of injury.

You must pay attention to this, well if the pain is in your hands you need to improve your position or grip. But if it persists or you experience it on your hands, wrist, elbow, or shoulder, it's a sign of a more serious problem.