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Correct wrist position and CTS
#2893113 09/22/19 02:19 PM
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Tom97 Offline OP
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I know that in order to prevent health issues such as CTS, one should play in a relaxed manner with wrists more or less aligned with the forearm (both vertically and horizontally).

However, my teacher insists that my wrist (the part that connects wrist with forearm) should be a little lower than the upper part of my wrist - I noticed that Josh Wright plays like this too in one of his videos.

I am attaching a picture of Josh playing. It is a video focused on beginner technique and the upper part of his wrist is a little higher than the part connecting to his forearm (hope I got that across).

Before I had a teacher, I tried to have my wrist and forearm completely aligned (even though I did not manage to do that all the time). So, which is the right way? According to my teacher, the position on the picture is the basic one for beginner pianists. Of course there are situations where this does not apply and the wrist position has to be adjusted. I just want to make sure it´s okay not to play with my wrist and forearm COMPLETELY aligned.

[img]https://ibb.co/kKzyztD[/img]

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Re: Correct wrist position and CTS
Tom97 #2893118 09/22/19 02:31 PM
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People have different anatomy. There simply is not a one correct hand shape and one's hand may change it's shape a lot when playing different passages. For me the most natural and effortless way is to play the fingers down from the knuckle and keep the wrist straight (levelling my forearm, wrist and knuckles) as much as possible. This has prevented my carpal tunnel problems returning.

Re: Correct wrist position and CTS
Tom97 #2893153 09/22/19 04:29 PM
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It depends what you are playing and your own morphology (if you have higher torso, long arms, ....). It is like at the tennis; there is a theoretical movement and then every player has his own twist to it based on what works best for him. The position is different if the piece is using many black notes or only white, chords or scale runs, ..... Personally my rest position is more level than Josh but the knuckles are still slightly higher; again when I start playing the configuration changes all the time.

Re: Correct wrist position and CTS
Tom97 #2893311 09/23/19 07:26 AM
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I had never heard of wrist alignment until I visited this forum.

The wrist must be relaxed and flexible, it must be moving all the time in all directions in order to allow fingers to play comfortably and in order to shape the phrases. I think you should only pay attention to how relaxed and helpful your wrist is when you play and forget about wrist alignment.

Re: Correct wrist position and CTS
Tom97 #2893395 09/23/19 12:26 PM
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I don't know how your wrist and forearm could alway be completely aligned in the way you describe without being rigid. Rigity can lead to injury. You need your wrists to be supple. There isn't a right or wrong height. The wrist should be mobile.

If your wrist is pointing outwards (towards the little finger side) for extended periods, you risk a cubital tunnel injury. This can happen if you are seated too close to the piano, or when playing with the left hand in the treble, and the right hand in the bass. You can usually compensate by moving your body. If you can't, look out for tension.


Last edited by johnstaf; 09/23/19 12:28 PM.
Re: Correct wrist position and CTS
Tom97 #2893411 09/23/19 01:08 PM
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Originally Posted by Tom97
I know that in order to prevent health issues such as CTS, one should play in a relaxed manner with wrists more or less aligned with the forearm (both vertically and horizontally).

However, my teacher insists that my wrist (the part that connects wrist with forearm) should be a little lower than the upper part of my wrist - I noticed that Josh Wright plays like this too in one of his videos.

I am attaching a picture of Josh playing. It is a video focused on beginner technique and the upper part of his wrist is a little higher than the part connecting to his forearm (hope I got that across).

Before I had a teacher, I tried to have my wrist and forearm completely aligned (even though I did not manage to do that all the time). So, which is the right way? According to my teacher, the position on the picture is the basic one for beginner pianists. Of course there are situations where this does not apply and the wrist position has to be adjusted. I just want to make sure it´s okay not to play with my wrist and forearm COMPLETELY aligned.

[img]https://ibb.co/kKzyztD[/img]

Originally Posted by Tom97
I know that in order to prevent health issues such as CTS, one should play in a relaxed manner with wrists more or less aligned with the forearm (both vertically and horizontally).

However, my teacher insists that my wrist (the part that connects wrist with forearm) should be a little lower than the upper part of my wrist - I noticed that Josh Wright plays like this too in one of his videos.

I am attaching a picture of Josh playing. It is a video focused on beginner technique and the upper part of his wrist is a little higher than the part connecting to his forearm (hope I got that across).

Before I had a teacher, I tried to have my wrist and forearm completely aligned (even though I did not manage to do that all the time). So, which is the right way? According to my teacher, the position on the picture is the basic one for beginner pianists. Of course there are situations where this does not apply and the wrist position has to be adjusted. I just want to make sure it´s okay not to play with my wrist and forearm COMPLETELY aligned.

[img]https://ibb.co/kKzyztD[/img]


Hi Tom, Right now I am dealing with wrist problems, and found a great answer to position and wrist tension. It is in the videos and supplementary material that are listed in the Adult Piano Adventures book. I purchased the app for the iPad for $4.95, and in it he has videos and explanations of wrist action while at the piano! There is a 3 minute demo after each lesson, on how to deal with wrist tension! I had it there all this time and didn’t even know it!!!


Casio Privia 160, Classic popular, Soft Rock, Studying In PIano Adventures AIO, Unit 11
Re: Correct wrist position and CTS
Tom97 #2893634 09/24/19 09:18 AM
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Have a look at this excerpt from a Taubman lecture:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=H_v5VdEDrHs

I was taught by a Taubman teacher for a few years because I was having hand, arm and shoulder pain - it's much improved now after changing position (mainly raising the bench) and avoiding stretching and twisting.

The wrist position on Josh Wright's photo - my Taubman teacher would have me avoid!!


Alan from Queensland, Australia (and Clara - my Grotrian Concert & Allen Organ (CF-17a)).

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