Picking Hand

JSopp

Member
Messages
21
Hey guys,

So I've been wanting to practice my right hand picking technique lately. Definitely something I need to improve on.

What exercises or techniques do you guys use to practice?
 

TMcB

Member
Messages
525
I'm on this buzz too; Frank Gambale's Chop Builder and Shred Mechanics are my current practice tools. Working well so far, but I'm a bit daunted at just how much work I need to do on my picking.
 

JSopp

Member
Messages
21
I'm on this buzz too; Frank Gambale's Chop Builder and Shred Mechanics are my current practice tools. Working well so far, but I'm a bit daunted at just how much work I need to do on my picking.
Haha I hear ya. Every time I try to attempt to actually "shred" in its classic sense, I fail miserably. I always use legato for speed, but I want to actually learn right hand technique as well.
 

straycat113

Member
Messages
2,926
There is a really good DVD you can get by Danny Gill on Lick Library called- Essential Guitar Practice Routines- Alternate Picking. I have learned a ton from Danny through the years going back to his MI books back in the 90's and a ton from his Lick Library DVD's. This DVD will deffinetly get you picking chops in order starting with simple basics of how to hold the pick and 10 warm-up exercises. He then plays three 2 minute instrumentals he wrote that are beginner- intermediate- and advanced level pieces that are really catchy with some really interesting techniques, runs, and diatonic scales. It also has a backing track for each song. I thought I was a decent alternate picker, but watching a player like Danny and the speed and ease of him picking will get most guys frustrated lol.
 

METAL

Member
Messages
338
Make sure to always stay relaxed and practice at a slow speed and slowly increase your speed as you improve. Angle your pick slightly, it will allow your pick to glide through the strings a lot easier. Make sure you are comfortable while playing.

Regarding exercises, I recommend just practicing things you're currently working. Practice to a metronome and slowly build up your speed. I recommend starting off by practicing with a clean setting on your amp, I find playing on a clean setting helps you improve your accuracy a lot better. Practicing using distortion helps you improve your muting. I recommend alternating between practicing on a clean setting and s distortion setting. Focus on your technique when you're practicing and even video record yourself and play it back. It will be a lot easier to see if you're doing something wrong. Speed and accuracy come with time and practice. Keep practicing and you'll see an improvement.
 
Last edited:

ivers

Member
Messages
4,166
What exercises or techniques do you guys use to practice?
Are you talking about alternate picking? If so, practice the motion of crossing strings (a lot), as this is the most difficult part of alt picking, and what separates it from economy picking. A good way to practice this is by alternate picking arpeggios.
 
Messages
24
I hold my pick at a 45 degree angle to the strings. There is much less resistance that way. The main movement is in the wrist and not the forearm. Don't dig the pick way down in the strings. The farther down you dig the pick is wasted energy and time before you get to the next note. Although debatable, I am of the school that picks with the wrist. My forearm is relatively stable and all the picking motion is done with the wrist. I don't use a lot of motion. The more motion you use, the longer time it takes to hit the next note. Here is another trick I use: look at your thumbnail while you pick. Now pick any one not as fast as you can. Then, try picking that same note slowly. Your picking technique shouldn't change. Watch your thumbnail movement specifically. It should remain consistent whether you are playing fast or slow. Initially, I found my picking technique changed when I played slowly. Once I got my slow picking technique consistent with my fast playing technique, it actually helped my picking overall.
 






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