Finger pain advice?

Posted by: RachManiac

Finger pain advice? - 10/06/12 10:41 AM

For the last couple of days, as I've been playing, my left pinky finger keeps aching. I've tried to go easy on it, by playing less strenuous pieces, and shortening the duration of my practicing, but the pinky pain just keeps coming back whenever I play. And I'm afraid that if I continue, I might injure myself. Any suggestions of what I should do? Thanks!
Posted by: emilypianist89

Re: Finger pain advice? - 10/06/12 11:45 AM

I had the same problem this summer! I strapped my pinky to my 4th finger and stopped playing for a few days. That finally took care of the problem. Easing off practice did not. I needed to take a complete rest for a few days.
Posted by: Derulux

Re: Finger pain advice? - 10/06/12 08:05 PM

You may have pulled something. Playing a lot of pieces with octaves/left hand stretches? Could have been a contributing factor.. I would rest it, but keep in mind that it could take a month or more to fully heal. (Some strains, sprains and pulls can take 3-6 months, longer if they're real bad injuries. Stress and inflammation injuries can take longer, too.)
Posted by: RayE

Re: Finger pain advice? - 10/07/12 08:37 PM

I second the complete rest idea, if a few days off don't fix the problem, I would consult a physician, there are many issues such as Trigger finger, arthritis, etc. that can cause long term problems if not addressed.
Posted by: LadyChen

Re: Finger pain advice? - 10/08/12 11:47 AM

I read this thread a couple days ago thinking, wow, that's gotta suck, and then I woke up this morning with the same thing frown. It's my right pinky -- too many octaves and extension I think. Time for a break! I'll be memorizing the LH part of my pieces this week wink.
Posted by: Derulux

Re: Finger pain advice? - 10/09/12 12:24 AM

Originally Posted By: LadyChen
I read this thread a couple days ago thinking, wow, that's gotta suck, and then I woke up this morning with the same thing frown. It's my right pinky -- too many octaves and extension I think. Time for a break! I'll be memorizing the LH part of my pieces this week wink.

Been playing any Rachmaninoff lately? wink Could be a tension issue, also.. but I agree, give it a break for a little. Let it heal.

Also, I know I owe you a recording of 23-5. I'm back on Wednesday and will send it to you. smile
Posted by: LadyChen

Re: Finger pain advice? - 10/09/12 01:09 AM

Originally Posted By: Derulux

Been playing any Rachmaninoff lately? wink Could be a tension issue, also.. but I agree, give it a break for a little. Let it heal.



Yes! And the annoying thing is, there was zero pain or discomfort while I was practicing yesterday and I made a lot of progress. But it definitely doesn't feel very good today.
Posted by: Derulux

Re: Finger pain advice? - 10/09/12 03:02 AM

Yeah, I hate when that happens. Usually, for me, it has to do with what I'm doing away from the keys, but for the heck of it, which one are you working on? 23-6?
Posted by: LadyChen

Re: Finger pain advice? - 10/09/12 09:28 AM

Yes, and I'm experimenting with fingering in the RH to get it smoother -- so using 1 and 4 for black note octaves, etc, so there is a bit more stretch than I'm used to. I wouldn't be surprised at all if that was causing the problem.
Posted by: Arghhh

Re: Finger pain advice? - 10/09/12 10:04 AM

If I find that something hurts after practicing, I usually take a moment to analyze my movements at the keyboard. More often than not, I find my fingers are unaligned (either at an angle to the hand, or twisted sideways), or am holding tension elsewhere and I can find a more economical movement that will minimize the pain and prevent its reoccurrence.
Posted by: bennevis

Re: Finger pain advice? - 10/09/12 01:14 PM

Many years ago, I developed this problem in my left pinky at the PIPJ (proximal finger joint) when I started playing pieces requiring a lot of bass octaves. I eased up on them, and the problem gradually resolved, and has not reappeared since even though I have been playing the same (Rachmaninoff's G minor Prelude) and similar pieces regularly since. It seems my joints have adapted to the increased stress. I didn't change my technique at all.
Posted by: Derulux

Re: Finger pain advice? - 10/09/12 01:57 PM

Originally Posted By: LadyChen
Yes, and I'm experimenting with fingering in the RH to get it smoother -- so using 1 and 4 for black note octaves, etc, so there is a bit more stretch than I'm used to. I wouldn't be surprised at all if that was causing the problem.

Yeah, I almost never use 14 for an octave. Too much twisting and stress for my hand. You really have to get your elbow in to use 14, but I just use 15 and a dash of pedal if needed. smile
Posted by: LadyChen

Re: Finger pain advice? - 10/09/12 06:44 PM

Originally Posted By: Derulux

Yeah, I almost never use 14 for an octave. Too much twisting and stress for my hand. You really have to get your elbow in to use 14, but I just use 15 and a dash of pedal if needed. smile


K cool, I'm going to tell my teacher you said that. She loves it when I say, "But some guy on the internet said to..." laugh
Posted by: Derulux

Re: Finger pain advice? - 10/09/12 09:45 PM

Originally Posted By: LadyChen
Originally Posted By: Derulux

Yeah, I almost never use 14 for an octave. Too much twisting and stress for my hand. You really have to get your elbow in to use 14, but I just use 15 and a dash of pedal if needed. smile


K cool, I'm going to tell my teacher you said that. She loves it when I say, "But some guy on the internet said to..." laugh

HAHAHA as long as you don't tell her where I live, I'm cool with it. laugh