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Banish the thought of running up steps, doing sprints and fast feet drills clutching a guitar.

I'm speaking of speed and agility of a different kind here.

I'm talking about being able to play an instrument with nimble, quick dexterous hands. There aren't many musicians who couldn't do with this. 

Some time back, I worked with an excellent guitarist who had started to find playing very painful. Rather than playing a minimum of 3 hours at a time, he would struggle to play an hour without being written off for a few days afterwards. Long practise sessions would ruin him for a week - a huge problem for a professional musician.

In resolving his painful ways (he was able to go back to practising marathon sessions daily) he was pleasantly surprised to find an immediate impact on a hillbilly guitar style he had been working on. His fingers were faster and more agile.

 

Lots of people, musicians included, have underactive or overactive muscles around their hands and wrists.

A little like the tale of Goldilocks and all that porridge she thieved, too little or too doesn't do the job. The right temperature is the one that tastes just right and the right amount of muscular activity is the one that gives the best performance by far.

It's also worth mentioning that suboptimal levels of activity around the hands and lower arms is accompanied by other suboptimal activity elsewhere. The ways this overactivity and underactivity can be distributed throughout a person are practically infinite.

That said, there are some things you can do that will address this balance and make you faster and more agile without doing specific speed drills on your instrument.

Keep your eyes and ears peeled for part two of this where I'll provide you with some suggestions to make yourself quicker with ease.

 

Arton "Just right" Baleci
Float Sting - Sports Injury Rehab and Performance, Harley Street, London, W1