Having a guitar warm-up routine which includes various right and left-hand exercises can be very beneficial for any guitar player, whatever their skill level. It’s very easy to create your own routine. Here is a short video that provides a simple exercise you can try right now…
Guitar Warm-up Routine Exercise:
1. Strike the sixth string with the thumb (or pick) of your right hand. This is the OPEN E string.
2. Now place the first finger of your left hand on the sixth string behind the first fret. Press down. Strike the string again with the thumb of your right hand.
3. Next, move to the second fret with your second finger and repeat the process. Continue moving up the sixth string until you have used all four fingers.
4. After you’ve reached the fourth fret, move to the fifth string and repeat the exercise. Continue doing this on each string.
- Start slowly
- Be accurate with your finger placement
- Strum down strokes with your pick: V V V V
- Strive for clean, clear tones
A Right Hand Exercise for Your Guitar Warm-up Routine:
- As you play the Walk-up exercise, use your right hand to strum alternate down-up strokes with your pick:
V^ V^ V^ V^
- Increase the speed in gradual increments while maintaining control
- Being careful to stress finger accuracy and the quality of your sound over speed
Use Scale Patterns:
Playing through scale patterns is another excellent way to add variation to your guitar warm-up routine. Not only will your fingers benefit from this muscle-memory exercise, but the scale patterns you learn can improve your overall playing as well.
Try playing this open E minor Pentatonic Scale:
Playing simple exercises before each practice session will help relax and supple the muscles of your hands so they can perform with greater dexterity and coordination. In addition to that, using a guitar warm-up routine can also help develop muscle memory. Muscle memory is an automatic process that begins in the subconscious. It is gained through repetitive motion. When the muscles of your fingers and hands are given the time needed to play something correctly, they will memorize it, and your overall progress will improve more quickly.
It’s probably safe to say that using a guitar warm-up routine before playing may be even more necessary for the advanced guitarist than for the beginner. Nevertheless, whatever your current level is, it’s important to realize that your hands can become easily fatigued or injured if you aren’t careful. Warming-up for as little as five to ten minutes before each practice session can help prevent such common problems as Repetitive Stress Injury, also referred to as Carpal Tunnel Syndrome, from ever developing. So I speak for myself as much as for other guitarists when I say warming up should be a priority!
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