Arm / Wrist alternate picking

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Thread: Arm / Wrist alternate picking

  1. #1

    Join Date: Dec 2008
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    Arm / Wrist alternate picking

    Having this be the biggest struggle in my guitar playing wanted to get your input.

    I usually pick with my wrist; however for anything over say 150 bpm 16th notes I end up using an arm / wrist combination. I'm never tense when I do it, and i have really good control with it.

    However for the life of me i can't under stand why I can't move my wrist any faster and why I have to end up using my arm to get faster speeds.

    Having just watched this video I see Chris Broderick went through a similar change; however he doesn't really go too much into how he did it.

    YouTube - Chris Broderick (Megadeth) - June 2010 Lesson

    Would love to get your input as far as a good way to move to a wrist only technique.

  2. #2

    Join Date: Sep 2008
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    Most guys I've seen with really developed picking techniques seem to use a combination of wrist and arm, where it's (I'd say) about 70% wrist and 30% arm at top speeds, where it's a kind of 'whipping' motion...

    The stigma attached to using your arm muscles when picking at high speeds is mostly due to it often being a result of tensing up your whole arm when trying to reach speeds your not really ready for.

    I'd say, provided you're staying relaxed, I wouldn't fret too much about it.
    "The greatest power one may possess -- in any situation -- is simply not to care what happens.

    "In fact, it's the only power, all others being a semblance and mockery of it. But you must also not care about possessing the power itself. So fuck it."

    Thomas Ligotti

  3. #3

    Join Date: Jan 2009
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    I'm in the exact same boat as your Samer. After watching a ton of Shawn Lane video's I decided to switch to wrist picking because it seems to be fastest. I still end up using my elbow to tremelo pick when I'm playing death metal or when I'm playing really fast (well for me at least LOL) but for the most part I've switched to wrist and I've found my playing has cleaned up a little as well as gotten faster when I do play completely from my wrist.

    There's a video of Rusty Cooley talking about this very same thing and he says just use whatever you're most comfortable with

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