Kate H.
user 12937388
Pittsburgh, PA
Post #: 2
I would be grateful if someone could tell me how to avoid this. I've only been playing the Uke for a few months and already have major left thumb pain--some days I can't pick it up at all. I am really trying not to grip so tightly but a major part of the problem is that I have very small hands and I have to stretch and bend more than most to make the cords. If this keeps up, I won't be able to continue for long. Any ideas or suggestions other than trying to grip as lightly as possible?
mitch b.
Pittsburgh, PA
Post #: 5
maybe look for a uke with a smaller-around neck? or find some chord alternatives that don't require the same degree of stretching? i love this site for finding chords: http://chordlist.bria...­ or maybe try some hand stretches (i found lots of sites when i googled) or one of those little hand-strengthening gadgets? i've seen some like this, which come in different sizes and difficulty levels, at Relax the Back near Trader Joe's in East Liberty: http://www.amazon.com...­

sorry i don't have any better advice.
Group Organizer
Pittsburgh, PA
Post #: 1
Kate...ouch!...This is fixable...if you had tennis elbow, your doc would likely say: Lay off for a week, take anti-inflamatory such as ibuprofen or Aleve, change your grip, even check in with a PT friend for excercises to strenghen, and when your resume play, play "soft" and not too long, and slowly, slowly build playing time. Kate, for your thumb, try this: stop playing and when you do, just finger the chords. You don't need sound to "practice." Yes, take ibuprofen and don't stop too soon. When you start back, play in short spurts, maybe 10/15 minutes at a time. Your thumb position could be giving you fits, and you can check with a teacher or other players. This will go away...baby yourself for a bit...and don't come charging back. ok? $2, please. Marlene
Amber R.
user 9724419
Pittsburgh, PA
Post #: 3
Hi Kate!

Are you coming to 1st Wednesday? I can take a look at your grip and see what's going on. I am NOT a ukulele teacher, but do teach violin, viola, and cello. The ukulele hold isn't too far off from violin, just sideways rather than vertical. One thing that I would suggest (without looking) is to make sure that your thumb is perpendicular to the neck, rather than parallel/in line with it. If your thumb is parallel you'll over stretch the tendon and end up with thumb, wrist, and eventually elbow pain, the same way violin players with a collapsed wrist do.

Hope we can get this figured out! :)

Joanne L.
user 83491002
Ellsworth, PA
Post #: 1
I am a massage therapist and would be happy to show you stretches not only for your thumb but your wrists as well. Your pain is most likely caused by repetitive use.
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