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Hand Care by Jack Grassel 9. Don't use your hands in place of tools!

There are pliers, screw drivers, lett er and box openers, scissors, that can reduce hand use. 10. Get a hand truck to protect your body while moving equipment. Always wear gl oves. 11. Be carefull when shaking hands. Just grab the finger tips so some macho man doesn't crush your hand before you walk onstage. 12. Learn to hold things without using pressure between the thumb and the other fingers. Squeezing the thumb and fore finger together causes tension in the whol e arm. 13. In general, as you go through life, do your daily tasks causing as little we ar on your hands, ears, eyes and body as possible. 14. Check the website of the Mayo clinic regarding carpal tunnel syndrome. They suggest practicing 15-20 minutes at a time separated by rest periods. 15. The spice "Turmeric" is available in capsules from health food stores. It's excellent at reducing inflammation! It's used to season Indian food. 16. "Zylamend" softgels promote a healthy inflammation response in your body. 17. Nature's Plus: "GlucosamineChondroitin MSM" can increase agility in older pl ayers. 18. Some folks get relief from muscle strain by soaking the hands in "Epsom salt " solution. It's available sold at the pharmacy. 19. For situations where you are in pain from overuse and it's an acute situatio n, use "L'Bri Super Aloe Multi Function Pain Relief Cream". This gets you out of pain in a hurry and increases agility. Available at: www.jillj.LBrionline.com 20. When playing a gig, your face is what most people look at most of the time. L'Bri Pure and Natural Skincare, Cosmetics and Nutrition are the best to help ma ke your face look as attractive, young and healthy as possible. Visit Jill Jense n at: www.jillj.LBrionline.com 21. Your hands are a small part of your body. Overall good health of the entire body is necessary to play music well for long periods of time. Get acquainted wi th Jack La Lanne's regimans for good health through his books. Visit him at: www .jacklalanne.com 22. I have helped many guitarists prevent and recover from injury. You can meet with me one on one to have me critique your interface with your instrument. In p erson or using skype. I can help you. Sign up for a skype lesson from the openin g page of this website or email me: jackgrassel@jackgrassel.com

Musicians need to practice and perform at the peak of ability for long periods o f time without damaging the body. If you have a serious chronic problem, see a d

octor. Evaluate your posture. Playing under stress causes damage. I have observe d many guitarists with incorrect (for them) posture who are in physical trouble from damage-producing finger, hand, wrist, arm, neck and back movements. You should be able to enjoy playing the guitar pain-free for many hours. Drugs w hich reduce inflammation and pain may cause other health problems by reducing re sistance to disease. The best solution is to stop it at the source. If you are playing a lot and the inflamation and pain gets bad, stop playing for a few days. Give your hands a re st. A great musician must not sabotage himself through destructive habits. A mus ician is an athlete who should be in top physical condition. It's better to practice multiple short periods than one long one. For example, p ractice a half hour 3 times a day instead of and hour and a half once a day. Pra ctice 6 half hour periods instead of one 3 hour session. That gives your hands a nd your brain a break. 1. Relax the hands before playing and keep them relaxed while playing. Soak them in warm-hot water for 3-5 minutes before playing to loosen up the muscles. If y ou have a big enough sink, emerse the entire arm, or soak in a bath tub. Washing dishes is a great thing to do before practicing. 2. At the end of the session, soak in cold water to reduce inflammation. Immedia tely at the beginning of a break during your gig, go to the restroom and run col d water on your hands. In cold climates, wear gloves to the gigs to warm the han ds, loosen them, and protect them while loading equipment. Avoid gloves after th e gig to chill the hands. 3. Avoid liniments which numb the pain but don't reduce inflammation. You need t o be aware of pain to you know the condition of your hands and arms. You can ser iously hurt yourself by playing with numb hands. 4. Get regular massages by a Certified Massage Therapist, including shoulders, n eck and arms. It's not good to massage the hands if they are inflamed. 5. Avoid caffiene, sugar, alchohol, drugs, marijuana, and energy drinks. They in crease stress, making you unpredictably sensitive or numb resulting in bad choic es, bad time, and increased chance of injury. 6. Hands are in use all day. There are ways to open doors, lift glasses, hold ea ting utensils and pens, steer a car, and tie shoes that cause less stress on the hands. Save your hands for making music. 7. When typing, the chair should be high enough so that elbows are higher than w rists. 8. Stop hurting your hands while playing the guitar. Relax and keep your wrists straight. Relax your face and neck when you play. Use a strap.

The Warm Up by Jack Grassel There are many conflicting views so you need to learn what works best for you. F rom 1990 to 1993, I was studying with a teacher who taught me a 20 minute warm u p exercise. He had done it every day for 30 years! I calculated he had repeated this exercise for a total of 3,630 hours. I decided that instead numbing my brai n with repetition, I would spend 3,360 hours learning new tunes, advancing my te chnique, promoting my career or learning anything I didn't already know! How long is your attention span? When is your mind most receptive? For most huma ns, it's about 20 minutes. Is it a smart to play something you already know, whi ch needs no thought, repeatedly during what could be the most productive time of your practice session? When I taught at the Wisconsin Conservatory of Music, I saw students for the fou r years needed for a degree. I noticed that after being with me a year, one stud ent hardly improved. I asked how he practiced. He described his two hour daily w arm up "before practicing": every scale, in every key, in every position! I aske d what he practiced next? He said, he was too tired to continue practicing. I prefer to practice material that requires the most thought first but I'm caref ul not to overtax my hands. Hands don't know the difference between a boring exe rcise, interesting music, or brushing your teeth, but your mind does. Then I rec eive the pleasure of playing exciting music and the challenge of learning. Your hands are busy all day. Avoid hurting your hands whether you play the guita r or cut the grass. When playing the guitar, remember that your mind and heart a re the source of the music. Don't waste time daydreaming while practicing. Play the guitar here and now, consciously! Someday your career will end and you will no longer be able to play music. Do yo u want to look at your past life and see that you've spent a million hours repea ting warmup exercises instead of playing music? Summary: The attention span for peak constructive thought is 20 minutes. The May o Clinic suggests resting the hands after each 20 minute practice session. Conclusion: You can practice most efficiently without hand damage with numerous 20 minute sessions instead of one long one. The bottom line: How much quality daily practice do you perform without hurting yourself? A musician should have a strong, fit, youthful body. The best physical exercise I've encountered is "the five tibetans". They take only about 15 minutes twice a day to perform. No equipment or purchase is required. They are free. They build a strong youthful body. Visit the website for instructions on how to perform th em: www.lifeevents.org _____________________________________________

Jack's Thoughts On Health You need to be in excellent physical condition to generate the best performance on or off stage. The occupation of musician requires long hours of practice, tra vel, performance, business and equipment moving while having disruptive sleep pa tterns. The quality of your music, your health and your life is the result of ev erything you do. I was given 6 months to live in February 2004. I hadn't yet pla yed all the notes that had been alloted to me and didn't want to leave Jill. An intense motivation to live more than six months encouraged the developement of m y "stayin' alive" regimen. I'm often asked about it. Here it is: MONITOR YOUR BODY S PH DAILY: The body needs to be at the correct PH for the hundr eds of chemical reactions to happen as they should. Junk food may make the body acidic. "Too acidic" can cause cavities from tooth enamel being eaten away and o ther diseases. Vegetables and most fruit make the body basic. "Too basic" can st op the body from absorbing calcium. Get PH tape at a drug store. LEARN YOUR BLOOD TYPE AND EAT ACCORDINGLY: An O blood type should eat meat, but in small amounts and only once per day. An A or B blood type doesn t need to eat d ead animals. Learn what your blood type is. Read the book Eat Right For Your Bloo d Type . STOP OR REDUCE SALT, SUGAR, AND BUTTER CONSUMPTION: These things destroy your he alth. Jack La Lanne suggests using olive oil instead of butter, even on popcorn. Read his book Live Young Forever which he wrote when he was 92 years old. So call ed "health / protein" bars and bottled "health drinks" are loaded with sugar. NE VER drink soda . It robs the body of B vitamins, rots the teeth, makes you thirsty for more and creates garbage inside and outside your body. Save a thousand dolla rs a year by using a water purifier. Carry water with you wherever you go. Look at the labels on canned food and you'll notice that it's extremely high in sodiu m (salt). Read You Living Young - The Owners Manual for Extending Your Warranty by Dr. Mehment Oz. STOP OR REDUCE COW S MILK CONSUMPTION: Calcium and protein are only partially abso rbed from cow's milk. Baby cows can absorb it but not humans. Eat goat yogurt be cause goat milk has a similiar chemical make up to human mother s milk. It s calcium is absorbed more readily. It's available at better health food stores. It also promotes healthier looking skin. If you must eat ice cream, get a type such as B reyer's which is not filled with chemicals. PERFORM THE FOUNTAIN OF YOUTH EXERCISES DAILY: These Tibetan Rites use the force of gravity to slow down the aging process and improve health and strength. You can learn these at www.lifeevents.org. Twenty one repetitions of the 5 rites take 10 -15 minutes. They can be done without equipment anywhere. Start with a few repet itions and gradually work up to 21 repetitions 2-3 times per day. DO ONE OR MORE OF THE FOLLOWING DAILY: walk, bicycle, lift weights, swim, altern ate the routine depending on how you feel each day. (Don't run as exercise. Ofte n, folks who have difficulty walking due to damaged knees, feet and hips will sa y that they used to run.) Logging exercise reps or distances reduces enjoyment a nd promotes failure. Let "how you feel" determine how long and when you exercise . If you don t feel like exercising occasionally, give yourself a reduced activity day or an exercise-free day. Learn what is the safe maximum heart rate for your

age and monitor it. Walk or bike instead of using a car or se the stairs instead of elevators. Exercise while watching g on the couch. Get a stationary bike for home (the Schwinn $200 and has an onboard computer) . Get 2 hand weights 5-10 hem near the TV.

bus. In buildings, u TV instead of sittin is excellent, under pounds each , keep t

CLEAN INTESTINES, BOWELS and KIDNEYS allow for nutrients to be absorbed. Changin g the fluids in your car dramatically increases the life span of your vehicle. L ikewise, your liver, bowel, and kidneys should be cleaned twice a year. The huma n intestines are not designed to eat meat. Some meat is not deficated and remain s stuck to the walls of the intestine which reduces the absorbtion of nutrients. That's one of the reasons there is so much colon cancer. These organs must be c leaned regularly even if you don't eat meat. Dr. Schulz makes it easy to do this with various over the counter preparations. Go to www.herbdoc.com VITAMINS: One takes vitamins in this country because the food has become impoten t since the 50s. However, the vitamin supplements in this country are irradiated which greatly reduces the potency to the point where they do little. Whenever p ossible buy them in brown glass bottles which protects the contents better than plastic. Vitamins in Mexico are way more potent. You can put Dr. Schulz Superfoo d in blender drinks to get absorbable vitamins from a natural food source. Preve ntion magazine had a life extension issue in which some doctors revealed their r esearch. One researcher found that doses of CoQ10, Alpha Lipoic Acid and Acetyl L-Carnitine daily in lab animals greatly increased energy, endurance and life sp an. Vitamins purchased in Mexico are not irradiated, less expensive and more pot ent. Taking vitamins at random can damage your health. Before taking supplements , get a blood analysis to find out what is deficient in your body. These levels change regularly due to diet and stress, therefore your vitamin and mineral supp lementation should change. You should get your blood tested at least every six m onths to determine what your ever changing supplementation should be. A panel of doctors in Prevention magazine in 2007 found that giving CoQ10, Carnitine, and Alpha Lipoic Acid to laboratory animals increased their energy, endurance and li fe span. DRINK TEA DAILY: You have to drink something to stay alive. You have three choic es. It can be neutral (water), negative (sugar, too much caffiene, alchohol, art ificial coloring) or positive (herbal tea). The population of Thailand drinks Ji agulan tea daily and lives very long, often over 100. The "Immortalitea" brand o f Jiagulan is excellent. Other teas such as green tea and white tea may reduce t he chances of cancer while imparting energy and mental clarity. Peppermint tea r educes food cravings which can result in weightloss. Your choice of type of tea can be influenced by your personal acute and chronic health goals. Tea has no ca lories and doesn't litter the world with plastic bottles. Get this tea on your w ebsite or at a Chinese herb store. TAKE A NAP a rejuvenating nap at 2:00 when possible. It will help you to work mo re efficiently later into the night. The Mexican culture takes naps at 2pm and h as a 16-20 hour work day. INCREASE YOUR IQ: A Korean doctor named Ilchi Lee developed systems for increasi ng the IQ of Korean school children. Learn of his work on the web under Brain Res piration . He developed the BR-Q machine to increase IQ by balancing the right and left sides of the brain. A side effect of the BR-Q is that it improves eye sigh t. I procured a BR-Q 5 years ago and it does exactly what he says it does. I use d it to counteract the brain damage I got from the staph infection. A by-product of using the BR-Q may be improved eyesight. FOOD: You have the choice of having what you ingest increase or decrease the lev el of your health. You and no one else controls what you put in your mouth. Stop overeating. If food is in a package and preserved, it's life force has been red

uced and is usually high in sodium. Food that spoils quickly is better for you t han something that has an infinite shelf life. Organic carrot / beet /spinach ju ice drunk immediately upon making has more life force than three year old bakery in a cellophane package out of a machine. BALANCE YOUR GUITAR: Move your strap buttons so your guitar stays in playing pos ition without you holding it so it doesn't move your body out of alignment and c ause pain in various places. Hanging upside down with a gravity table once a day helps to undue the compression induced by a15 pound guitar hanging on one shoul der for many hours. Use a video camera to study what you look like when you perf orm. What's your posture like? What does your face look like when you are perfor ming? Are you relaxed? THROW AWAY YOUR TELEVISION. Yes. You don't have to have one. Really! Become tele vision-free. How much time do you watch it a year? (4 hours a day is 1,460 hours per year. 43,800 hours in 30 years.) One third of that time is spent watching c ommercials. If you must waste your valuable time in front of a television, watch something positive, without violence. Exercise while you watch. Strong shoulder s, arms, and backs are required to play music and carry equipment to and from gi gs. Get some hand weights. Start around 3 pounds and eventually work up to 10 po unds. Learn which and how many reps to do to strenghthen your body. Start slow a nd work up to 20 - 40 reps in units of 10 per exercise. Keep your weights next t o your television. Watching television is an option and a choice. You don't have to have one. If you already own one and want to keep it, you don't have to turn it on. There are other activities that are more beneficial to your health. Your marriage, children and career are more important than watching television. GET SOME LIGHT ON YOU: The light of the sun is "full spectrum". Your body senses these wavelengths to initiate numerous chemical reactions. You need sunlight to absorb essential Vitamin D. Flourescent lights blink on and off very fast causi ng eye strain and headaches and vitamin D deficiency. . Ordinary candescent ligh t bulbs are better for your eyes because they don't blink like flourescents but aren't full spectrum either. Replace the bulbs in your home and workplace with f ull spectrum candescent Chromalux brand bulbs. Spend at least 20 minutes a day y ear around outside in the sun. Look at the sky and plants. Smile while doing it. It's good for you. LISTEN TO MUSIC: Don't use it as background music for work or other activity. Si t or lie down and actually listen as if it was the last music you will ever hear . Listen to music that's healthy for you like "A Love Supreme" by John Coltrane. Consider it "brain food" or "therapy". Once I listened to only that recording f or 6 months. Also spend some time each day in silence. SMOKING CAUSES CANCER. CANCER CAUSES AMPUTATIONS AND A SLOW PAINFULL EXPENSIVE E ARLY DEATH: Stop smoking right now! Last night on the gig, a guy walked by me wh ile taking a cigarette out of a package. He said, "I'm going outside to shorten my life by 7 minutes." I saw him do that several times. I added it up: 7 minutes per cigarette, 15 cigs per day, 365 days per year. 5,475 smokes per year takes 38,325 minutes off his life. That's comes to 273 packs per year at $7 each. He s pends approximately $1,911 each year to shorten his life by another 26 days. Loo k on the package. It says, "SMOKING CAUSES CANCER". Most people use both arms to play music. PROTECT YOUR HEARING: The world has gotten very loud. There are sounds everywher e with enough decibles to damage your hearing. You need to carry ear plugs with you similiar to carrying sun glasses or a jacket or any other item to protect yo u from the environment. Earl Mindell, Ph.D. in his book "Secret Remedies" states that "noise induced hearing damage and hearing loss may be improved by taking 5 00m of magnesium, 800 mc of vitamin B12 and 60 mg of Ginkgo Biloba 1-3 times dai ly" "See my discourse elsewhere on this sight regarding "perfect pitch and heari

ng protection". YOUR FACE is what most people look at most of the time during the day and at a g ig. L'Bri Pure and Natural Skincare is the best way to help your face look as at tractive and healthy as possible. If your diet is bad, it will show up in the sk in tone of your face and the size of your belly. Purchase these wonderful produc ts at: www.jillj.LBrionline.com YOUR HANDS are what most guitarists look at. Make sure your nails are filed, sho rt, even and clean. Wear gloves before and after gigs to avoid skin, nail and in ternal damage while setting up equipment. Apply warm to hands before gigs (and s ets) to loosen them up. Apply cold after gigs (and sets) to reduce inflamation. Remember that your hands are not tools and don't use them as such instead of usi ng a real tool. Read up on all the things that cause arthritus and avoid them. YOUR BRAIN needs to be relaxed to think clearly and direct the complex physical process and mental process to produce a great performance. After consulting many students and professional performers as well as observing my own mental process , I created BRAIN TRAINING, a CD which can help reduce nervousness and increase confidence which can produce a better performance. One needs to merely listen to the 60 minute CD occasionally to notice improved performances.

Michael Jordan's high school basketball coach suggested that Michael give up try ing to play the game. Mr. Jordan discovered years later that he needed to work o n his movements. He said in his book: "If you practice something the wrong way 8 hours a day, you will become very goo d at doing something the wrong way." I hear from a lot of players who practice all day and never get improve. I also hear from many players who have wrist, arm, finger, and back problems. When I he ar that, I always ask to see what they are doing. Most of the time, the guitar i s held incorrectly, with arms and bodies in strange contortions (in addition to practicing the the wrong material the wrong way). I tell them to "freeze", holdi ng the position. I then remove the guitar and hold up a mirror so they can see h ow uncomfortable they look. I then ask them to hold the position for five minute s and observe the pain. After this exercise, they see that there is a problem an d want to fix it. I have students (or professionals who should be playing better) to get into a co mfortable position which can be held for many hours without pain, and put the gu itars (with straps) on them, enabling them to play without changing the position . I have been creating a science of balancing a guitar through moving the strap buttons to tailor the guitar to the person playing it. Wrists, back and neck wor k best when straight. Always use a strap, a good one. Your job is to play the guitar. The job of t

he strap is to hold the guitar. You have an expensive guitar (and body), why ski mp on the strap? Adjust it so that your wrists, back and neck are straight. Your feet should be flat on the floor. Don't use a foot rest, it causes back problem s. The guitar and strap should be in a position to keep the guitar at the same angle whether the player is standing or sitting. Most poor players have two guit ar positions; one standing and one sitting. Therefore, all the music you play mu st be mastered standing and sitting. You must practice everything twice. Many players make strange mouth and facial contortions when playing. This mi ght have little to do with music and can cause stress in the body. You know you' re in trouble if you see audience members mimicking your movements. The face mus t be relaxed. A smile relaxes the neck muscles between the skull and shoulders. To play well for the duration of a four hour gig, energy needs to be conserved. Have someone video tape you performing and practicing. Study it with your te acher. The really good teachers do that. Get a great teacher. If you have been studying with someone (and practicing) , and you are not improving, and your posture has not been addressed, you need t o look for a better teacher. The piano virtuoso Glenn Gould took his home practice chair with him when he gave concerts. If you sit when you play, your knees should be lower than your hips by a few inches which will help straighten your back. Go to an office supply store and buy a practice chair. Take your guitar with you.