Strengthen and Tone Your Playing ;-)
Serious about your guitar playing? Here are some guitar finger exercises for both electric and acoustic that will boost your skills very quickly. This lesson is suitable for most levels, except absolute beginners. If you can switch smoothly between most of the open position chords you should be fine.
Even if you consider yourself to be pretty decent at guitar and you've never done any finger exercises before, you should. Why? Give it a try for 2 - 3 weeks and see. I think you'll be pleased with how quickly you can feel the results in your guitar playing.
The most important thing is that you can see the value of spending a little time developing your hands. If you can see the value in this, then you're in the right place :-)
Yes, guitar finger exercises can be boring...but the best part is you don't have to do them forever. Even 2-3 weeks will give results. You can spend time on them once or twice each year. They have never failed to improve my playing anytime I've done them. And that's over many many years now.
if you really want to, you can even do them while you watch TV. Just make sure to be sitting in a proper chair. You don't want to strain anything by being slouched in a couch...
Here's a guitar video lesson that demonstrates the guitar finger exercises outlined below.
The exercise demonstrated in the guitar video is designed to develop strength and dexterity in the fretting hand. It's only one exercise of many possibilities. There are also exercises for picking and fingerpicking.
OK Dave, but are they really worth doing?...
Only if you want to see rapid results in the following areas of your guitar playing...
switching between guitar chords with even more fluidity.
Improved clarity in your sound. Less sloppiness with chords and lead.
Play faster! I know that one will motivate you :-)
Slow down the aging process. Ummm... well, there's no research to support that, but I'm stickin' to it ;-)
Guitar Finger Exercise Outline
Make sure your fingers are lined up in a similar way to mine in the guitar lesson video.
Start at the 1st fret, string 6.
Hammer on with your 2nd finger. Don't rush or "muscle" it. Allow the weight to shift from your 1st finger into your 2nd finger. Kind of like walking.
Repeat on string 5, string 4, etc.
Reverse direction and come back to string 6.
Now do the same thing only this time using your 2nd to 3rd fingers.
3rd to 4th.
2nd to 4th.
1st to 4th.
1st to 3rd.
Whew! Ready for pull-offs? Remember, all the details of the guitar finger exercises are in the lesson video :-) However, it's still an excellent idea to read through the instructions. It helps you learn things more completely.
Line up you fingers in a good guitar position. We'll start on string 6, 1st fret like in the hammer ons. In the guitar lesson video I call it the "classical" position. This is where your thumb is back and down so that all your fingers can be lined up more directly.
Pull ( almost like a snap ) your 2nd finger off while your 1st finger is fretting behind it. Go on to string 5, etc.
Continue in this manner with the same finger combinations as the hammer on exercise above.
Note of Caution: Please be careful with these. They can be quite strenuous. Build up slowly. Be consistent on a daily basis. You will get stronger.
If you're really serious...I highly recommend looking into a regime of chin-ups with a supinated ( palms facing you ) grip. A few years ago I had some issues with my elbow and forearm. A chiropractor recommended that exercise to me. On any given day I play guitar from 1 to 4 hours, and...
Since doing chin-ups ( as well as push-ups and stretching, etc.) on a regular basis I've had absolutely no issues with my hands, wrists or forearms :-) There's also the added benefit of looking better "nekked" ;-) And you thought all you had to do was guitar finger exercises!
I hope you found this guide on guitar finger exercises useful. Please let me know if you would like any other guitar exercises to be featured on this website.
Thanks again. I hope I've inspired you to "keep dusting off your guitar" :-)
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