Guitarists, who play the palm muting technique a lot, or strum the strings fast, tend to tape their fingers regularly. But why do they do it? When we tape the fingers, it reduces the risk of bleeding or cuts and friction on strings which can lead to blisters and painful chafing while playing. Now the question is, how to tape your fingers for guitar playing and what happens if you don’t do it properly?
If you play guitar for long periods, you may start feeling pain in your fingers and notice redness or swelling. This results from increased blood circulation, which causes the skin and tissues beneath it to stretch and cause pain. Taping the fingers properly is an effective way to prevent pain.
So, whether you play acoustic or electric, taping the fingers is a great solution to extend practice time without hurting the fingers. In this post, I’ll provide all the information about how to tape your fingers for guitar playing properly.
- How To Tape Your Fingers For Guitar Playing: Step-by-step Guidelines
- Why Do Guitarists Tape Their Fingers?
- How To Protect Fingers While Playing Guitar?
- How Helpful Are Guitar Finger Protectors?
- Homemade Finger Protectors For Guitar:
- How To Tape Your Fingers For Guitar Playing: Conclusion
- How To Tape Your Fingers For Guitar Playing: FAQ
How To Tape Your Fingers For Guitar Playing: Step-by-step Guidelines
There’s nothing more annoying than to stop in between playing due to a soar finger or aching. By putting tape on the fingers we can avoid that. Still, many guitarists face finger-aching problems because they do not know how to tape the finger properly. Improper taping causes your fingers to swell and become sore and gets in the way of stroking or fretting. So, here’s a step-by-step guide on how to tape your fingers for guitar playing without taking a toll on fingers!
Step 1: Decide Where You Want To Tape
The first step in tapping your fingers is choosing the exact point of taping. Tape the finger does not mean that you tape the entire finger. You must locate the precise point that you use on the strings and then tape it. Mostly, we use the edge of the finger while playing. So, let’s be smart and tape the fingertip only.
Step-2: Cut Some Finger Tape and Use It
Always use a guitar finger tape, not some ordinary tape, otherwise, you won’t be able to produce desired sound!
Take a small portion of finger tape, cut it, and wrap it around the finger. But make sure not to apply these tape layers too tightly, as you risk losing blood circulation to your fingertips. I recommend not using more than three layers of tape on the finger.
Step-3: Try Playing For A While
Once you have applied finger tape, it’s time to test the feeling by playing the guitar. We usually just use the tape and start jamming, regardless of how comfortable we are or how well the guitar sounds. That’s not the right thing to do. I recommend checking the guitar’s sound after applying the tape. As long as the guitar sounds good and the fingers are comfortable, you’re good to go. But if there are any tiniest buzz occur during playing, try checking, adjusting, or reapplying finger tape.
Why Do Guitarists Tape Their Fingers?
Several reasons may lead a player to consider using finger tape, such as:
- Aching fingers
- Cuts and abrasions
- Support for guitar picks
- Dry skin
- Hand protection
Some guitarists may tape their nails if they sometimes pluck strings with them instead of a pick. This way, their nails do not get caught on strings or damaged. On the other hand, some players find it easier to strum faster if they tape their knuckles. This is because the strings do not cause much friction when the tape is applied.
How To Protect Fingers While Playing Guitar?
Putting much pressure on the guitar strings often results in discomfort, or bleeding or blisters to our fingers. But you can avoid those by following some simple tips:
- Take breaks. Consider splitting your practice time up so your fingers can rest rather than play for a long period.
- Use Nylon strings. The soft nature of nylon strings makes them less aggressive on the fingers.
- Keep your nails short. Thus, you can press down more easily on the strings and lessen soreness.
- Never play with wet fingers. Wet fingers mean they will be softer than usual and easily be in pain with all the string pressure.
- Use a guitar pick. It is designed to protect our fingers while playing. Also, it can keep the strings clean.
Related Posts: How to Clean a Guitar Fretboard
How Helpful Are Guitar Finger Protectors?
Finger protectors are designed to protect our fingertips. They are like little caps on fingertips. Now the question is, should you use them? Do they really work? I never recommend using finger protectors. They may save you from pain, but eventually they’ll lead you to poor playing techniques.
With a finger protector it’s really tough to practice good playing techniques. Moreover, if your fingertips do not contact guitar strings, you cannot expect to toughen them up. This means your fingertips will never develop calluses. We all want to develop calluses, right? So again, do not use finger protectors.
Homemade Finger Protectors For Guitar:
Finger protectors are never an ideal choice for playing guitar. But still, if you have sore fingers or have a cut and looking for a homemade finger protector, then the below steps might help you.
- Step 1: Take a piece of rubber long enough to cover your finger; you can use a rubber tube for this.
- Step 2: Clean the piece of rubber properly.
- Step 3: Wrap the rubber around your finger but remember not to make it too tight.
- Step 4: Cut a piece of adhesive tape and use it to wrap around the rubber piece on your finger.
How To Tape Your Fingers For Guitar Playing: Conclusion
You easily reduce the possibility of injury from cuts and bruises by taping the fingers. A few simple steps are all you need to ensure that your fingers stay taut as you ply your trade. The more you hold the fingers on strings, the more you put pressure on them, and the only way to avoid this is by taping the fingers properly. So, follow the steps properly on how to tape your fingers for guitar playing and have a wonderful time.
How To Tape Your Fingers For Guitar Playing: FAQ
Is it normal for fingers to hurt after playing guitar?
Yes, it is absolutely normal. Your fingertips will be sensitive, specially, you first start to play the guitar. But with the time being the fingertips will toughen up when you get calluses, and then it won’t hurt anymore.
Does playing guitar damage your fingers?
Not actually. Just take time-to-time breaks while playing. Don’t push your fingers to extremes, like playing fast for a long time without taking any break, as this may lead the fingers to injuries.
Do you need long fingers to play guitar?
No. Long fingers may help you slightly, but that doesn’t mean you need long fingers to play guitar.