Hand Injuries

Hello fellow guitarists.

I’ve been utilizing a lot of Justins amazing videos for the last 2yrs.
I’m wondering if theres any other members that have had a hand injuries? A lot of the times I feel like I’m on a island because of this. My pivot points are hard to find because I’ve lost my index finger including the knuckle. My situation is a little different and wondering if anyone in the community has this similar experience?
I’m a little self conscious about this but what the hell. I really get frustrated to say the least. Because of Justin’s videos, the Class of 23 and Clubs I can play roughly 8 songs. Never thought it be possible!

My hope is to find other guitarists that have hand injuries?

Thank you and have a wonderful day. :guitar::drum:

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My answer is yes and no to this question. I came off my motorbike 10+ years ago and I have reduced mobility and strength in the middle finger of my right hand. In day to day life this can be a bit awkward but as a right-handed person it doesn’t affect my guitar playing at all as that’s just holding a pick. It would be an obstacle to me playing left handed.

Good luck with finding others who can offer advice to you.

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I badly broke my right wrist (strumming hand) a couple of years ago. While it’s not the same injury as you, I was told it was a life changing injury and I wouldn’t be able to use my hand normally.

I have painful arthritis in it and it takes a couple of hours to get going each morning.

I have purposely decided to pick up a guitar again to make sure I didn’t let my injury dictate what I could or couldn’t do. I now see guitar practice as a form of physiotherapy.


If you want inspiration try looking at Django Reinhardt who played with two fingers. One of the great jazz players of all time.
I have limited mobility in my fretting hand ring finger from breaking it when I was a kid so I can understand the frustration.

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No fault of justin’s lessons but ended up with a sprained thumb on my fretting hand from practicing
barre cords repeatedly I think. Still dealing with it a year later but think I’m on the mend with a lower
setup on the acoustic guitar. Minimal string height = less pressure on the thumb.

Thank you for sharing your experiences. I was wondering if there were others out there that have struggled with hand injuries. I’m really grateful that you all shared your personal experiences. Just over 2yrs ago someone suggested I look up Django. I couldn’t make many chords but someone suggested Open G Tuning too. That put the bug in me and with Justin’s YouTube videos I was well on my way.
I’m really grateful for your thoughts & insights on this sensitive issue​:pray::guitar::drum::+1:


Hi Bob, I’m suffering from an old hand injury too, broke my third finger on my left hand at the knuckle, first joint was completely displaced. Hand surgeons told me, that they couldn’t help me. Now my third finger is constantly flexing a bit out of direction and isn’t by far as flexible as my other fingers. I can’t bend this joint as far as the others, but it’s a minor problem to yours, having lost your index. Funnily enough, the training for the ring finger did well, so far I don’t have problems I could’t find a workaround. My curved little finger, pointing inwards is much more of a problem in terms of embelishments or reaching the next fret.
Out there in tbe www are several great players who mamaged to play with missing fingers, I hope you find some encouragement!

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Hello Andrea

Thank you kindly for sharing your personal experience about your hand injury. I’m really happy to know that there are others here that can relate. Its an old injury from the 70’s as I was a chef. I had a great hand surgeon but he couldn’t save the finger after a few surgeries. Unfortunately, gangrene set in. I’m a lefty and I’m finding work arounds that have kept me going. Learning has been hairpulling at times but I’m sooo glad I stuck with it after 2yrs. The hardest thing I’m struggling with is when to use my thumb on the back of the neck. I have a large gap between my thumb & middle finger because there’s no knuckle. The guitar neck falls deep in between these 2 points. I guess my thumb needs to get busier.:laughing:
Maybe, I’m just not using it enough? Its just tough knowing when to use it & when not to use my thumb. I think I’m focusing more & more on my thumb position for a reason. I’ve become more and more aware how important the thumb is. It has to come into play for my situation. It can be confusing moving around the frets because of missing knuckle & digit. The neck sits too deep in my palm. Hope my explanation makes sense? I’m very grateful for the comments & support. Keeps me motivated :pray::guitar:
A big thank you!

My issues are nothing compared to yours, but I can imagine how hard this must be. Just to give you some encouragement, there are a few videos on YT from persons who have major hand injuries or have lost fingers. Just one example from a guy with a missing index:

Maybe there’s a chance to get kind of a taylor made space reducing cushion from silicone or whatever to bridge the gap? Maybe talk to a orthopedic technologist, if there’s a way to help you? I know, there are replacements for missing fingertips or objects to help barre strings e.g. here: https://youtu.be/CVnfz4Mck2U?si=nnQRJNoABrSNLcEs
I wish you all the best! Rock on!

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Thank you for your insight with this subject. This video is a tad inspiring. j/k
INCREDIBLE video. I looked around for something like this and all I found was a guy who pretended he had no index finger. That in itself helped me realize a lot of guitarist just use the middle, ring, & pinky finger at times. This video just blew my mind. Incredible and inspiring to see this. I really appreciate your help and especially the inspriration. very cool :pray:

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