I'm really struggling with my picking

Hi everybody,
I work a lot on my picking technique (to maybe someday be able to play some Becker Alternate picking part, or Patrick Rondat Vibali tribute, 16th at 160 BPM, i’m far from that).

I really try to do 2WPS but I feel like I have to force a lot to push any string, I let you see in the video below.
When I tremolo pick a string I’m most comfortable with UWPS (can reach 170 BPM 16th for almost 1 min) but when it comes to play on several strings, even if I do my best to use my wrist, elbow to change I feel like I struggle a lot.
I tend to get a nice angle with the pick, wrist motion etc… But I just can’t manage to be smooth
Can you find what’s wrong please ?

Please let me know if you need a video with a better camera angle.
thank you very much : )

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I think I see some thumb movement. Especially at the 0:06 part. Maybe try to get your UWPS (well, downstroke escape) tremolo picking really rock-solid first and see if you’re actually using only your wrist to do it. Check it at different speeds, it might change.

I would also take into account the amount of pick tip that you’re using to push past the strings. Maybe pull back a bit, see if that helps (or makes it worse)!

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I try to keep my thumb locked, but there is some small movements indeed, it’s discouraged ?
I can’t lock it more, without being to much tensed on my right hand

A better video maybe, I really try to lock the thumb and focus on wrist. Is it a correct move ?
Thank you very much for your time guys, you’re great ! : )

I think both of these clips look pretty good actually! The motions you’re making appear to be a combination of forearm, wrist, and thumb. Nothing wrong with that! These three-string scales that you are playing, most people have a hard time doing that because of the combination of string changes. But yours look pretty good. Several of these takes are played perfectly.

It appears you’re making changes to your arm position as you move through the pattern. Is this something you’re doing intentionally, or just by feel?

There is nothing specifically “wrong” with what you’re doing here, so I wouldn’t necessarily tell you to change your motion. If this approach is working for you, and you have mostly worked by feel, then I would continue doing that and just try to smooth out what you have, and increase the accuracy over time by using it on a wide variety of phrases, at a wide variety of different speeds.

Occasional filming will show you when notes are right or wrong, so it’s a good idea to take a look once in a while as a test. If you only operate by feel, then sometimes you can’t reall tell where the mistake is. So the two times I film things is when they feel great, and when they feel wrong. Looking at the great playing will confirm if it really is great. If so, excellent, take that same picking pattern and apply it to different types of phrases, to make it permanent. Looking at the playing that feels “off” will tell you what the mistake is, and give you some idea of what to change.

An answer from the master himself :smiley: thank you very much for the time you take to watch and advise us with those very complete comments.
My arm moves, you mean when I pick across the strings (which is more an attempt to 2WPS by switching the direction of my pick with the wrist) or when I end a phrase, my arm moves from the table (which is done by feel, and not really wanted).

You advised to try new phrases with a fast tempo, then work on the accuracy with a slower one (correct me if I missunderstood).
On which tempo can I say “it’s ok to do this motion”. Fort instance with my current technique I can do one fast run (16th at 180 BPM 3 NPS up and down on several strings, but only one time, if I try more at this speed it’s getting sloppy). Does it mean it’s ok ?

Thank you for your time and your answers, you guys do a really great job.