What am I doing? (Antigravity style?)

Hey everyone! Can y’all tell what it looks like I’m doing while playing full-scale alternate-picked lines (what I gathered antigravity to be about)? I feel like there’s a decent amount of swiping and thumb / index finger involvement that is more apparent in slower playing.

I’d like to know in order to be able to provide feedback for people that do similar movements, and just so I can streamline my playing. Here goes a ton of links!

3 NPS root to 2nd circular pattern:

Another angle with slower playing into faster playing (thumb involvement?):

Descending sixes into all 6 strings 3 NPS (so an 18-note consecutive linear scale?:

A complicated Tom Quayle riff that shows more thumb movement, I think:

Butchering the Universal Mind intro, think I see thumb movement:

@tommo @troy, sorry if I’m formatting embeds incorrectly!

Hi Pepe - sorry for the confusion. When you’re pasting links, you don’t to use the link button, just paste the URLs directly into post on a line by itself, with a blank line before and a blank line after. Then the forum will embed them so we can just click to play. If you can edit the post, that would be great.

Also, if I can make a request, it would be great if you could read through the Picking Motion section of the Primer and see what you think you are doing first. We spent a huge amount of time putting this together, and we have whole sections in there for exactly this purpose, like “Identifying Elbow Motion”, and “Identifying Forearm Motion”, and so on.

As you do this, you’re not just trying to determine which joint you’re using, but also which type of escape motion you’re making too, like DSX, USX, and so on.

After you do that, come on back to this thread and tell us what technique(s) you think you’re using. Then we’ll look at the clips and see what we think.

Here’s the Picking Motion section of the Primer:

Not all the videos are viewable with a free account, but many of them have been converted to GIFs so that everyone can see the important parts. I’d also point out that we still have the scholarship option available for players who really want to learn but can’t swing the full price of the membership right now.

Let us know how else w can help.

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I edited the links - again, just the URL on one line, no other text before it or after it.

Great playing here. What I would also suggest, while you’re reading up, is taking some of these exact examples you’re playing here, and playing them at about 80% of this speed. Not slow, and not blazing fast like this, but just a little slower. By doing this, you will have to become more aware of the motions you’re making, which will help the learning process. Also, mistakes will become more obvious, so that you can both feel them and hear them. This will let you know if the motions you’re making are working the way you intend.

Great start so far.

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Thank you for the prompt and detailed replies @Troy, and also for editing the links!

I re-read the link you provided, and I still feel torn as to what I’m doing. I feel like there’s some involvement at the elbow (I actually have a pretty consistent medial head of the tricep knot which tips me off on the movement), forearm rotation, wrist movement and the aforementioned thumb / index finger. Honestly the one I feel the least is wrist movement. As far as escape, I think I alternate between the two depending on what string I am on, but could maybe lean more towards upward-escape.

I’ll try slowing it down as you recommended, and hopefully when the magnet arrives I’ll have a better perspective. Thanks again for your time!

You don’t need to wait for a magnet. If you’d like to film the 80% takes, here are some tips on doing that:

A regular tripod with a $10 adapter to hold your phone works fine. You’re looking for this perspective:

In general you’re a wrist player, and the Tom Quayle example you’re using forearm secondary motion as explained in the Primer. In the fast clips I really can’t tell if there’s a primary motion in your technique, so one thing you can do when you get your tripod set up is to film a single note on a single string, a couple bars of sixteenths, at various tempos from medium up to fast, with a pause in between, to see what the motion looks like. That will tell you what motion you choose by default, i.e. primary motion. You will need to match the framing / perspective in the image above and film in at least 60fps, preferably 120fps, to really see what you need to see.

You have great speed already, meaning your motion, regardless of escape, is efficient. This is really the best starting point, because you can always clean up efficient motion, but you can’t make accurate inefficient motion go fast.

So in other words, the next step is try and clean up the fast stuff. The Tom Quayle lick is accurately played, nice work on that. I think you can hear that something is off in the faster clips, either hand sync, string switching, or both. If you continue to blaze at these speeds, you won’t learn any more than you already know. But you can determine what the problem is by gradually slowing down. The motions will become more obvious to you and to the camera if you film them, as well as any swiping, double-struck notes, missed / airball notes, and so on.

You can continue to bounce around between different speeds to compare the slightly slower and hopefully more accurate takes with the feel of smoothnes of motion of the fast speeds. The goal is eventually to have the slower speeds be as smooth as the fast ones and the faster speeds be as accurate as the slow ones. The motions will need to change in some way to cause this. You’re not looking for blind repetition, but change. If you’re not changing, you’re not actually improving.

Keep us posted!


Again thank you for the insight! I’ll have to see what I can rig up in order to do some additional takes.

@troy I did what you suggested of attempting the same thing at 80% and definitely felt it helping! Here’s that attempt:

And full speed at this angle:


Honestly surprised me to find that I am using what looks like wrist motion primarily! I might have to find some exercises to do for strengthening the deviation muscles, I had a climbing injury a while back that essentially hyperextended deviation towards my pinky. I’ll try to clean up what I have so far at 80%. Thanks again!

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