Forum - Banjo Ben Clark

Is standing harder than sitting?

I usually practice (guitar) sitting down, and am thinking that I need to start practicing standing up, too. Anybody find obstacles there? Guitars (and maybe all instruments) are of course more secure while you’re sitting, and tend to move around more while standing, maybe making it harder. Or am I doing it wrong?

(Pretty sure playing double-bass while sitting is not worth trying :slightly_smiling_face:)

I’ve been playing for a long, long time and I still find it much harder to play guitar standing than sitting. You’re right… it’s not as secure. As for mandolin, it’s just the opposite. I play that more comfortably standing.

As for drums and piano, I think most would agree that sitting is the preferred playing position!


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JW is spot on. I’ll add that playing banjo is also more difficult standing buy mine sounds better that way. Also, if you can stand (playing guitar) but put one foot on a chair or similar, you can hold it like you’re sitting, while standing and it’s easier

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I do 99% of my practice sitting, but if I know I’m going to be playing for an audience soon, I’ll start practicing while standing. It takes some getting used to every time, but I’m always glad I made the effort.

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Exactly the kind of feedback I’m looking for. Thanks, all!

I run the strap pretty short so the height is about the same as when sitting. When I was younger, I used to sling it low to look like Jimmy Page, but I couldn’t even play “Mary had a little lamb” like that. Who cared? I wanted to look cool!

I do think the biggest thing is what you get used to. I play standing a fair amount, and I don’t think it matters a great deal to my playing now.

Tell you what I found recently playing banjo. As the banjo is a heavy instrument its easier sitting down. However it can be of benefit to stand I found. When I am sitting I get complacent and have to look at the frets all the time, I also tilt the banjo slightly to see the frets. So I get into a lazy habit. However when I stand up, this feels awkward at first but it results in me learning to play more on feel rather than looking at the frets, which means I can play a tune and look outwardly and stand with better posture. This has to be a good thing I would imagine.

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Has anyone tried the mbrace? I was thinking of trying it with banjo. I saw it at the goldtone factory and it seems useful. I was thinking of leaving a banjo in position to sneak in a quick moment of practice without as much setup.

I practice banjo sitting (lounging or reclining in my big chair actually). Every now and then I’ll stand but it takes a while to find the right stance and arm positions. I also find it more difficult to see the fret board so I’ve been considering some sort of padding I can attach to my belt that would push the bottom of my banjo outward a little bit to rotate the fret board into view. Or just start growing by belly more; that’s probably more likely to happen.

My banjo is so heavy though. I’ve have a nice dakota strap but oh man, my shoulder gets sore and my back starts to ache pretty quick. I don’t how those guys on stage stand playing so long with heavy banjos. Although it’s more appropriate to stand if you’re on stage, sitting during jams is perfectly fine.

Not being able to see the frets can help long term I think as I mentioned above. Just go by the dots along the edge of your banjo.