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Tuesday, August 19, 2008


Guitar Hero (and Rock Star) Hand Muscle Exercise

On the verge of the release of Guitar Hero 4 and Rock Star 2, popularity of (and competition for) music related video games is rocketing. With users (gamers) of all ages passionate about these video games, finger, thumb, hand, wrist & elbow injuries (RSI's like tendonitis, carpal tunnel syndrome, tennis elbow, gamers thumb, trigger finger, etc.) are also on the rise due to the repetitive nature of Guitar Hero and Rock Star. Like guitarist, drummers, bassists, keyboard (piano) players, wind instrumentalists and other musicians, hand muscles are enormously involved in Guitar Hero and Rock Star playing, so let's understand their role.

Very simply 9 muscles close the hand and are located on the front of the fingers, thumb, hand, wrist, forearm and elbow.

Equally, 9 muscles open the hand and are on the back of the fingers, thumb, hand, wrist, forearm and elbow

Very simply, the muscles that close the hand do most of the visible actions of pressing the color keys or striking the drums (or strumming). The muscles that open the hand work in support of the action of the hand closing muscles, as do the wrsit extensors. All muscles are active when playing Guitar Hero or Rock Star and are therfore open to overuse and repetition syndromes. All muscles must be balanced and toned properly (through full ranges of motion) to maximize Guitar Hero or Rock Star performance (improve speed, strength, stamina and accuracy) and prevent injury.

See our video on Guitar Hero player Dustin Jensen as we collect hand muscle activity patterns using sEMG (surface electromyography) and watch how easy it is to train all 18 hand muscles using Handmaster Plus by doczac (see

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