Lesson 5: Strumming the Guitar

In this lesson we want to look at strumming.

The Basic DownStroke Strum

Let's begin by strumming down strokes on 4 strings. Just to get the feel for strumming smoothly you should practice strumming across the top four strings while playing a simple 4-string G chord. That means just fingering the high E string at the third fret.

You need to hold the pick firmly enough that it does not slip out of your fingers when you strum the strings, and hold the pick with a bit of downward angle to help it glide over the strings. In time you will learn that strumming requires a "soft" touch. Don't fight the strings with the pick. Let it glide nice and smoothly.

The 1-2-3-Rest Strum

The other thing you will have to learn is to strum iin time with the tempo of the music you're playing to. Try a simple 1-2-3-rest stroke as in the video. Choose a tempo that is not too fast - you could use a metronome, or play along with a simple song as in the examples below.

Three Blind Mice - G - See music with chord changes

Twinkle, Twinkle Little Star - G - See music with chord changes

Achy Breaky Heart - G - See music with chord changes

Rivers of Bablylon - G - See music with chord changes

Back to the Start

Go to the Next Lesson