My Hands Hurt When Playing Guitar OUCH ! :( Is this normal ?

by Gabri3lla

I started playing guitar about three weeks & half ago. My fingertips are getting tough and its not hurting...however the muscles in my hand are killing me.

Every time I hold down the frets I can't play more then 15 mins at a time b4 they get tight and start to ache and cramp. After its like my hand feels like its been doing a heavy workout.

Is that normal ? I know you only need to press as much as it takes to sound the strings, but it seems I'm pressing down pretty hard to do that. Do I just need to wait for my hand strength to build up ?

I also heard something about action and was wondering if that's what was causing it, or if its just because I'm new to playing.


Hi, Gabri3lla--

Yes, it is QUITE normal. The things that you are asking your hands to do are just not natural things for a hand. The pain a fatigue should go away gradually as your hands become used to playing.

The type of guitar that you are playing can definitely make a difference in your comfort. Acoustic guitars generally have a wider neck and are more likely to cause pain and fatigue. Electric guitars have a narrower neck and are often easier for beginners to play.

It is possible that having the action on your guitar set could help alleviate the discomfort.
You might want to take your guitar to a qualified repair person and ask about the possibility of resetting the action.

Good luck with your playing! You might want to check out our Absolutely Free Guitar Lessons. You will find tons of free lessons and other valuable resources.


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