healthy musician's hands…
August 6, 2018 at 7:57 AM #63931
Hey…I guess one thing any musician…old or young, pro or amateur back porch, fears, is arthritis, carpel tunnel, etc., etc., etc. Well…I’ve always kinds tried to protect my hands…I do stretches and hand strenghthening exercises, etc. Here lately, having to sign up on the dreaded Medicare, which I think is a big stupid thing, yet all the vultures buzzing around wanting money to explain all the part As, part Fs, supplements, gaps, drugs, blah, blah,blah…so that you sign up at 65 and then if you messed up and live to 90 you die in agony and lose your home to boot…anyway…oops did I go off on a rant there, sorry…anyway, with everytime I go to the mailbox, get online, etc., the medicare “help” vultures buzz around me…it’s just reminding me that I’m getting old. So far I’ve been lucky…no problems in my hands…yet, I look at my 93 year old dad, and he has it all…arthriits, bad tendons, carpel tunnel…he doesn’t play music, but he does carpentry and his hands really keep him from enjoying much of that. Anyway…I’ve been reading and really thinking now that the missing nutrient that has modern man suffering from these things quite possbly could be gelatin. I mean…even when i was little, like 50 years ago or not even that long ago…we all fought for the parts with gelain…we chewed the chicken bones down, everybody ate all kind of gooey meat byproduct. Now, most of us don’t regularly raise our own meats, and the store sells only cuts…who eats jello? All full of colorings and chemicals…so…yes, I once was a vegan for a while but quit when my health was a mess after 12 years of that…I love animals and am a vegan at heart, but reality hit and I came to realize I’m healthier not vegan, and not low fat. Well…my big question…anybody else read up on gelatin? I’m just now startgin to incorporate gelatin into our diet, thanks to messages from the medicare vultures swarming me now…I’m hoping if we add some into sauces, whatever…we can stave off arthritis and if I live long enough to lose all my money and belongings from picking the wrong medicare junk now, at least my fingers will hold up and I’ll be fiddling night and day! Oh, yes, I will always do my finger stretching and hand strenghthening exercises too. What about anybody else? I’d say look up gelatin, among other healthy hand ideas.August 6, 2018 at 1:53 PM #63935
Who knows , every time I think I know I find out I don’t know anything , I still eat the Grisel / cartilage off chicken bones . calcium , magnesium , potassium , sulfur , gelatin who knows what and how much of anything , sodium , electrolytes and so on ? Good luck !August 6, 2018 at 6:24 PM #63937
Steve, I’m going to start using gelatin powder…and if between that and the huckleberries, if I keep going strong for many years to come…I will let you know for sure! Yeah…I love those chicken bones…but I remember all the other stuff we used to eat, even home rendered lard…it’s all gone by the waysaide, and for me at least, it’d be hard or impossible to go back to all those things by this point. So…maybe I should make some huckleberry jelly to start with.August 6, 2018 at 8:13 PM #63938Great ScottModerator
One should always take care of one’s hands. That’s why I use Palmolive dish washing liquid. Tough on grime but soft on hands. As a matter of fact, I’m soaking in it right now. 🙂August 6, 2018 at 8:37 PM #63940Great ScottModerator
Cricket, some people suffer from arthritis due to injuries of the joints, Others suffer from it due to a genetic predisposition, or even getting it via contagion from another person (this is a certain type of arthritis). Arthritis can strike you anywhere at any stage of life. I have known children who suffered from arthritis. It not only affects the joints; it can also affect many organs of the body. Keeping a healthy weight. Doing exercises and eating correctly may prevent it in some people; but the general consensus is: If your’re gonna get it, you’re gonna get it.
Once upon a time, my hands used to be soft and subtle; and as smooth as a baby’s bum…blebee. Now my hands look more like ugly crab claws from another planet. That’s probably why I have a strange attraction to the claw-hammer banjo. A bit like Robbie the Robot’s hands. Below is a picture of me trying to form the Peace symbol. Very frustrating when I can get it. And musically? Good for strumming but lousy for plucking! 🙁August 6, 2018 at 8:59 PM #63942
Oh Madge, relax, we’re all soaking in it, either literally or figuratively.August 6, 2018 at 9:05 PM #63944
I like that clawhammering too, Scott. That’s why i don’t want age to catch up to my hands, if there’s any possible way it can be avoided. I had total body arthitis once…it’s a long story, but it was because of a vaccination i was given while in the hospital giving birth to my daughter. It was only temporary, but my jaw joints swelled up, my fingers and wrists, my knees and ankles…just every joint in my body was red hot, swollen twice its size and extremely painful to move a quarter of an inch, plus, I had a tiny infant to take care of all day and night, and could barely move…wasn’t fun. Don’t want anything like that anymore if it can possibly be avoided. My dad’s 93 year old hands give him a lot of pain and trouble when he tries to do anything much…not fun.August 7, 2018 at 3:58 PM #63958
Violet Hensley from Arkansas is still playing the fiddle at 100…I wonder if she eats gelatin????? lol. This only proves every family oughta raise a hog of their own each year.August 7, 2018 at 4:00 PM #63959
Actually…she might be over 100 by now…hope she’s still playing!
I wanna be like her if and when I ever grow up!August 7, 2018 at 4:40 PM #63961
Cricket I live here in Arkansas and I have never met her , I have been to silver dollar city a few times and didn’t get to see her when I was there !August 7, 2018 at 6:28 PM #63963
Well shucks, Steve…you need to see her. One of my old friends from SE KY lives there now and once in a while she’s on Facebook…she was telling me once that she saw her fiddling show and it was amazing and funny…a few years back, can’t remember how long ago it was…not too long ago. Anyway, my friend enjoyed it very much and said Violet was a real character.August 10, 2018 at 10:28 AM #64046John (BGD)Keymaster
Cricket, hand health is so important when playing any instrument. My advice is to stay flexible by moving your fingers and wrist, but don’t physically stretch your fingers or small joints using the other hand. And, don’t practice when if you are hurting. Give it time to heal! I’m not sure what diet is best for bones and ligaments, but anything you can do to increase your health would be recommended.August 10, 2018 at 10:28 AM #64047John (BGD)Keymaster
Cricket, hand health is so important when playing any instrument. My advice is to stay flexible by moving your fingers and wrist, but don’t physically stretch your fingers or small joints using the other hand. And, don’t practice when if you are hurting. Give it time to heal! I’m not sure what diet is best for bones and ligaments, but anything you can do to increase your health would be recommended.August 10, 2018 at 3:15 PM #64055
Cricket , a product I use helps with joints aches and pains and skin is MSM Organic Sulfur , By No Boundaries and wellness , You can read up on it , It supports your joints , mobility , skin hair and nails , immune system and promotes relief of allergy’s , about 1/3 of your body is made up of Sulfur ! Does not cost anything to read up on it !August 10, 2018 at 8:29 PM #64072
Is that something you take by mouth, Steve? I think I’ve heard of something like that people rub on joints, etc., but sounds like you’re talking internally. i wouldn’t be thinking about this much if the medicare vultures weren’t circling me constantly. I don’t really feel 65 except they’re squawking about it and I gotta start paying all that money the supposed “good deal” medicare is out every whatever it is 3 months, 4 months…I think it’s a racket, myself. It ain’t a good deal at all…if ya got hurt or sick bad, you’d still go broke and lose everything you ever worked for. Bad deal…ain’t no good healthcare deals in this country. I knew somebody who flew to India to get surgery, had a little vacation there while recuperating, flew back…this was several years ago, but she couldn’t afford insurance and actually saved money by having surgery in India. That’s just crazy. ok…end of rant…it just makes me worry about my hands…lol.August 10, 2018 at 11:32 PM #64080
Cricket , by mouth internal , nothing is cheap or fair when it comes to health care , poor folks are 2nd class citizens when it comes to health care , It’s a sad thing to live in the richest country in the world and have little or no health care !August 11, 2018 at 7:08 AM #64081
It is sad, Steve. We don’t value humanity enough…money is the most important thing, it seems to me. I had a friend who traveled to England and got sick…several years ago…he went to the doctor and he was like…what? I don’t pay? What? the medicine I also don’t pay for? But I don’t even live here…they were like…hey, it’s our health care system…coverage shared by all, and always here for anybody who needs us. NOw with us….even if you have access it’s so complicated…which doctor, which drug, which account…plus you’re still paying, not to mention you pay each month or however often. You still even have to have insurance when you’re on that ridiculously complicated medicare insanity…what’s the use of it? I think it’s all so stupid, complicated…even cruel…to hound sick people with all that complicated junk about which does what…you still owe thousands in the end and they think if that’s not ok with you it’s because you’re a bum. Silly…America is silly with their greedy healthcare system. You can see the greed…just turn on the TV…all we ever see are drug commercials or insurance commercials…I mean, where’s the Hasbro commercials or the tater chip commercials?????August 11, 2018 at 11:06 AM #64084
Cricket I truly believe that America has more bad predatory Capitalism that it has good , Its a good thing to have incentive for people to work harder to get ahead in life , But in the case of company’s and rich people using the people for what I call self indentured slavery such as good ole credit , people never stop paying , also I am a strong believer that the pharmaceuticals stopped doing cures in the 50s all drugs are now designed to treat the systems but not to cure anything , I may be paranoid but I truly believe the doctors only know what they are taught they put you on a drug to treat the problem but to never cure which means it’s by design predatory capitalism , We the people are big pharmaceutical company’s life long customers / till death do us part which is a form of indentured slavery , I don’t think Doctors are evil but they can only give and do what they are taught ! They do help keep people alive and the big Pharmaceuticals do not wont you to die as you are part of there never ending income , But bottom line it is criminal predatory indentured slavery , well enough of this rant , Gods book says to except the things we cannot change , I do not believe we can fix this and just maybe I am just crazy and paranoid ! LOLAugust 11, 2018 at 11:26 AM #64086FrederickParticipant
When I had my 4-stent, 5-bypass heart surgery back in 2006 I came out from under anesthesia to find that my pinky and ring fingers on both hands were feeling just as though I had hit my funny bone with both elbows. That feeling/sensation was supposed to go away within a few months, but twelve years later it’s still here and with ever-increasing numbness. I no longer can feel the pinky on my left hand and barely can feel the pinky on my right hand. Playing unison notes on the fiddle – a sound which is so much a part of fiddling – is very difficult anymore since I can’t feel the string being depressed.
The problems aren’t only associated with fiddle playing, but also playing up the neck on the banjo. For now, I’m having better luck with the Dobro (resonator guitar) because I only have to hold the slide bar with the left hand.
Needless to say, I gave up playing the piano right after my surgery.
I still enjoy playing music, but I’m getting more and more deeply troubled by the impending loss of finger agility. I try to stay upbeat about it, but I know it’s deteriorating day by day. Staying in the present is the best medicine.
I enjoy the friendships with so many talented folks I’ve met along the way. I guess I’m learning to accept things I can’t seem to change. Today from 2:00 – 4:00 p.m. I play with a 93 year old man who still has all his faculties and most of his dexterity. He has a group of friends in their late ages, too, and I feel privileged to be asked to be a part of it. Later, this evening, I’ll perform with another group that also enjoys having me a part of their music…so it’s not all bad. lolAugust 11, 2018 at 11:51 AM #64087
Steve, i thoroughly agree with you. The medical industry here preys on the slaves of Capitalism, for sure. You should look up some of the old Kentucky anti-capitalist songs from the coal mining areas…whew…yeah, the songsters were definitely fed up… Aunt Molly Jackson and Sarah Ogan Gunning…hope I spelled it right. Good songs. I used to sing them liviing in the hills of SE ky…but I guess they are a little strong for the general public to deal with…lol. I haven’t sung them for a long time.
Fred, I’m really sorry you’ve had to give up piano because of what happened to your fingers. That’s tragic and i can only imagine the heartache (oops…no pun intended there). But it’s great you’ve ventured toward other musical directions…I’m sure it’s nowhere near the same, still, it’s music and it sounds like you have a lot of opportunity for participation with it.
I wonder if cross tunings on the fiddle would make it easier on your hands? I do cross tunings and don’t often run into the pinky territory…but the ring finger is often used. Sometimes I cross tune and then play up in second position, for modal stuff…you get the unison on the middle fnger sometimes instead of on the ring finger as you would in 1st position cross tuned. If you play clawhammer banjo..same deal…you use special tunings…hardly any chords, IF any at all…and no picking with the right hand…just thumping down on the strings and snagging the fifth string with the thumb…I’ve heard people say the old time ways of both fiddling and clawhammer are easier for people with arthritis, etc. Just a thought. But sounds like dobro is giving you a lot of pleasure at the moment…happy for that!
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