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Palmside forearm pain (Read 236 times)

Offline pogouldiwitz

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Palmside forearm pain
« on: September 19, 2021, 03:04:20 PM »
Hi,

I recently returned to learning the piano after a long break. A month or so ago, I started playing in the evening and didn't notice that I had been at the piano for close to three hours. The next day I felt some soreness in my forearms on the palm-side of my left arm. The pain is located midway between my wrist and elbow. I only feel it when I try to play. Occasionally it goes away and i'll try to play for 15 minutes or so.

I have noticed that if I'm sitting at my desk and my entire forearm or just the wrist is supported that I don't feel any pain when I simulate some sort of finger exercise on the surface of the desk.

1) Does anyone have advice on how to heal this injury?

2) Is it possible that I don't use enough finger action in my playing? This would seem counter to the modern approach to pedagogy, which stresses playing with the entire arm, using gravity, minimizing reliance on finger technique, etc.

Thanks.

Offline j_tour

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Re: Palmside forearm pain
«Reply #1 on: September 19, 2021, 04:38:12 PM »
Unfortunately, I think I know exactly what you're talking about.

It's, for me, a kind of intramusucular aching which is omnipresent, and in odd places where there aren't corresponding joints.

No, I don't think you can solve it, and I doubt it has to do with your technique at the keyboard.  Just one of those things.  I use ibuprofen in an attempt to combat inflammation, but at maximum prescribed strength, over a regimen of months, it's not been successful entirely.
My name is Nellie, and I take pride in helping protect the children of my community through active leadership roles in my local church and in the Boy Scouts of America.  Bad word make me sad.

Offline scientistplayspiano

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Re: Palmside forearm pain
«Reply #2 on: September 19, 2021, 05:54:52 PM »
I understand how frustrating it is, when you came back to play, doing everything correctly, however, suddenly had an injury.

Do you happen to have a virus infection or cold recently? Once I had a strange joint pain, level 6 out of 10. I thought it was an injury, and started to read books about injury and piano technique. That was actually time I really learned how to play with arm weight, wrist circle and forearm rotation.

Gradually I recovered and made great progress. A few months early, the joint pain happened again, but this time I realized I caught a virus, which was not just coincidence. I believe the virus triggered inflammation and the pain. Once I recovered from the virus, the pain is gone.

Hope you will recover soon.

Offline pogouldiwitz

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Re: Palmside forearm pain
«Reply #3 on: September 19, 2021, 08:46:10 PM »
Not a virus but I am going through a tough time, personally. I hold a lot of tension from stress in my body, so it's possible that my muscles are tense and the resultant lack of flexibility caused this problem. Idk.

Offline pogouldiwitz

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Re: Palmside forearm pain
«Reply #4 on: September 19, 2021, 08:51:02 PM »
Unfortunately, I think I know exactly what you're talking about.

It's, for me, a kind of intramusucular aching which is omnipresent, and in odd places where there aren't corresponding joints.

No, I don't think you can solve it, and I doubt it has to do with your technique at the keyboard.  Just one of those things.  I use ibuprofen in an attempt to combat inflammation, but at maximum prescribed strength, over a regimen of months, it's not been successful entirely.

It seems like it's a forearm flexor issue because I notice the tension/ache when I close my hand (without my fingers curled). I also notice it when I grasp something like a tea kettle and carry it in a way that requires grip strength. The ache is in the same spot.

I like to sit a little higher, but I may experiment with sitting a little lower to engage more finger action.


Offline anacrusis

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Re: Palmside forearm pain
«Reply #5 on: September 19, 2021, 09:16:17 PM »
Not a virus but I am going through a tough time, personally. I hold a lot of tension from stress in my body, so it's possible that my muscles are tense and the resultant lack of flexibility caused this problem. Idk.

This can absolutely happen. My technique saw a decline during a couple of years where I had a lot of stress that I felt unable to deal with. It was very difficult to relax my body even though I had known how before. Tense muscles and playing the piano do not go well together. You may be helped by taking a conscious look at what you can do in your life to reduce stress and tension - if possible, I know it sometimes is not - as well as your technique.

Offline scientistplayspiano

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Re: Palmside forearm pain
«Reply #6 on: September 19, 2021, 09:27:06 PM »
Relax is much easier said than done. It is a journey, not only physically but also physiologically. Here is a book worth reading: What Every Pianist Needs to Know About the Body.

Amazon link: https://www.amazon.com/What-Every-Pianist-Needs-About/dp/1579992064/ref=sr_1_1?crid=1FTG0H5WZA81B&dchild=1&keywords=what+every+pianist+needs+to+know+about+the+body+dvd&qid=1632086515&sprefix=What+pianist+ne%2Caps%2C212&sr=8-1

There is also a DVD based on the book, but I never found where to buy, if someone happens to know, please let me know.

Offline j_tour

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Re: Palmside forearm pain
«Reply #7 on: September 19, 2021, 10:37:14 PM »
It seems like it's a forearm flexor issue because I notice the tension/ache when I close my hand (without my fingers curled). I also notice it when I grasp something like a tea kettle and carry it in a way that requires grip strength. The ache is in the same spot.

That, on the other hand, is something I do know a good bit about.

Just from experience.

But, there, again, the only cure I've found is rest.

Flexor tendons in RH and LH, as well as the feet.  And the larger tendons controlled through the forearm and corresponding leg. 

There are some kinesiotape techniques to help support the larger tendons, but I don't think that would help in the long run.

You may be in need of restructuring of how you approach the keyboard.

It may be something as simple as readjusting your stance/sitting position.  But, you would have to try it out over the course of at least a few months, so, it's not very simple to diagnose.
My name is Nellie, and I take pride in helping protect the children of my community through active leadership roles in my local church and in the Boy Scouts of America.  Bad word make me sad.

Offline lostinidlewonder

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Re: Palmside forearm pain
«Reply #8 on: September 20, 2021, 03:01:01 AM »
The only cure is to stop until the pain totally goes away. It is just like doing weight lifting for the first time or after a long hiatus, if you push yourself too hard you're going to hurt for a while aftwards and it's no good blocking that out and continuing unless you want to break yourself. Playing piano 3 hours without break is not healthy for anyone really and rather ridiculous if you are just starting out again.
"The biggest risk in life is to take no risk at all."
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