My name is Chris, I’m from Hobart, Tasmania. Since I was 15 years of age I have had this perhaps delusional thought that I’d like to play Guitar well enough to entertain myself and perhaps others if they choose. Inspired in my youth by who else but The Beatles and others, Fleetwood Mac, Johnny Winter, Rolling Stones…the list is endless really. Acoustically inclined, I have fiddled and faddled, getting part way toward a ‘goal’ but never far enough. I have followed Justin ever since he headlined (front page spread) of his hometown newspaper, ‘The Hobart Mercury’ . If I remember correctly it was titled “Could this be the Worlds Best Guitar Teacher?”.
Skip froward 55 years, I have now retired and free enough to perhaps pursue what I have had in my heart all this time. I have along the way though, developed arthritis in my left hand (middle knuckles of my three middle fingers). So, I am not averse to starting again and learning to play left handed and wondered if there were folk who may have experienced such a transition and what resources they might have used.
Thank you Mark
Welcome to the forum Chris.
Hi Chris and welcome to the forum! All the best with your journey
Hi Chris. Welcome to the community!
Hello Christopher and welcome to our community.
If you flip sides it will be interesting to see how you get on playing as a leftie.
Enjoy your adventure.
Hi Christopher, and a warm welcome from Austria to Australia .
Switching sides and starting more or less from scratch sounds like a great plan. I’m quite certain, that there was a community member who did the same after a bad injury of his fretting hand. But unfortunately, my old brain can’t remember who he was . Maybe somebody else can remember his name .
I wish you a great restart and hope to hear more from you .
Thank you and yes it will be interesting. One can only try.
Welcome aboard, Chris!
Glad you now find the time to pursue your dream, but sorry to hear about your left hand. As shared Mark, Justin himself swapped the guitar (for a different reason though), so I guess, this will probably work.
All the best and lots of fun on your guitar journey!
Cheers - Lisa
Hi Chris Welcome, Sorry to hear about your arthritis.
What a great approach to relearn left handed lots of what you have already learned will be relevant.
Good luck on your progress.
Welcome and I wish you a lot of fun
Hi Chris, a warm welcome from the land next to where Nicole is from, which is also down under but using your perspective
Not sure if Nicole can confirm (and not sure either if it really matters), but there seem to be no kangaroos in Austria
Welcome also from Australia
Nice to meet you
Sorry to hear about your arthritis.
I love that you’re trying left handed to get around it and continue playing
Hey Chris, welcome to the community. Plenty of other aussies around here, I’m from Northern NSW and enjoyed greatly my trip to tassie a few years back
Hi Chris! Andrew here from the mainland. Like you, I have some form of arthritis in both middle fingers (holds both hands up with middle fingers extended ) - I have been diagnosed with psoriatic arthritis. Coupled with this, I also have ‘trigger finger’ in both middle fingers, meaning they lock in a gripped position when grabbing objects or, in the case of guitar, playing for extended periods. The open D chord (x00232) is particularly problematic for me, as are barre chords if playing for a long session. I have had my left hand lock on me while performing a couple of times, and this really challenged my memory and quickly able to play chords all over the fretboard while my hand is locked in a particular barre shape.
I can’t give medical advice, but this is what I do to ease (only somewhat) my arthritis and trigger finger problems:
- play for shorter periods (30 min is usually okay for me)
- finger stretch exercises before playing
- learn alternate chord voicing to avoid problem chords e.g. I play the open D by barre-ing the G, B and E strings on the second fret and play the 3rd fret on B string with my middle or ring finger.
- play guitar in different ways e.g. play more lead rather than rhythm/chords
- Learn another instrument - I have taken up bass which poses less of an issue for me and the learning curve wasn’t as great as learning guitar for the first time - and there’s always a need for a bass guitarist!
Keep on strumming!
Hello and thank you. Great tips that I will follow up on. Sorry to hear of your arthritis, like you I do get the lock up thing happening…it’s a real bother.
I can confirm, Franz, no kangaroos in Austria’s wildlife. In some zoos, you might find them .
Chris, welcome to the community forum. Sorry to hear about your arthritis. You can start learning to fret and play with your other hand. Justin made the switch for the Nitsuj practice session videos, but it was apparent while watching that it takes some time. While you are learning with the other hand, you may find some chords and riffs that you can do even with the limited mobility in the 3 fingers. Django Reinhardt became a great jazz guitar player even after severely injuring his ring and little finger in a fire. Look up his story and you might find some inspiration. Best of luck in your guitar journey and have fun.