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Here is Another One of the Major Struggles on Guitar

So I recently did a poll of what was the #1 struggle out there on guitar.

I found another one that was really quite prominent.

If you missed my post from last week, check out the #1 struggle on Guitar. You can read it here.

But there is another.

And man, is it a doozy for many.

Sometimes the mere mention of these words strike fear in the hearts of many.

Ok, buckle up.

Are you ready?

Here it is:

Barre Chords!

I’m actually typing this on Halloween and I think that if there could be a guitar oriented horror story it could be title something like:

The Attack of the Sinister Barre Chord!

Ok, maybe not that, but you get the idea.

It can really be a pain for so many. Maybe you are one of them?

But also, I’m guessing that many of you have conquered that immense villain.

And that should be an encouragement to the rest of you because there is hope on the other side.

The real tonic to that poisonous elixir is this: practice.

Nothing can be a substitute for that very act of practicing.

But what you all should be aware of is that the amount of time needed to overcome this struggle is different for everyone.

While some may get it within days or weeks, others might take months to get it.

The key is to not give up. If you give up, you sealed your fate and gave in to that monster.

I have taught many players and see all kinds of awesome achievements.

And, if you are one of those that gets discouraged that others seem to get it quicker than you, I have news for you:

Odds are real good that there will something else on guitar that will come easier to you that others are going to struggle mightily on.

I see it all the time.

One takes a million years to get it on barre chords but finds scales are a piece of cake while another can grasp a barre chord like its breathing but can’t play a scale without immense frustration.

The key is to hang in there!

Also, if you are trying all of this on your own, it makes it that much harder. 

Find a mentor, a teacher, a friend, that knows what you are going through and has the experience to help you through it.

I can’t say enough about that.

Plus, find some online videos from reputable people to show some other tips and tricks to overcome your struggles. While it isn’t the same as private instruction, it can help and often be a supplement to your private help.

I teach all the time and regularly will point to videos (some mine, some from others) that will help with whatever a student is struggling with.

Here is one video I made to help those of you a little ways into your barre chord journey. It’s a cool exercise called Zig Zag. Give it a go:

🎸 Here’s a Cool Guitar Finger Exercise for You!

Are you having trouble moving your fingers from chord to chord?

Or, perhaps having problems trying to play some kind of cool solo?

The Finger Crawl exercise is great for your left hand coordination.

However, if you really want your fingers to work the way you really want them to, try this exercise.

I call it Diagonals.

As you do the exercise, you will see why it is called that way. Your fingers move in a diagonal direction across the fretboard.

You don’t have to be a lead guitar player either. Every guitarist should do this kind of exercise.

I do need to tell you that if you have never done it before, it will be hard.

Press through it. I assure you that you will be able to play it well in a short amount of time.

As long as you practice it.

Even if you have a handful of minutes available, this could be a good one to keep the fingers in shape.

=> But, a word of caution, if you have never done this before: start slow! It might hurt a little if you overdo it.

Take your time building up to it. You will definitely do well in time.

“All good things come to those who are patient”

Hop on over to the blog to get a detailed description (w/TABS) and the video on how to do the two methods:

Here’s the Blog that describes it in detail: Diagonal Finger Exercise

Want the video? Here ya go:

Good luck!

How to Deal with One of the Major Struggles on Guitar

So, recently I posted a question on several social media groups for guitar and came up with some interesting answers.

What was the question you ask?

It was this:

“What is the #1 thing you struggle with on guitar?”

And wow, there were some struggles! Many of them I can relate to…

My guess is you do too.

Do you want to guess what was the #1 struggle?

Several hundred comments collectively came my way and it took some time to gather them all.

Here was the top struggle:

Strumming.

Yeah, that was it. How about you?

See, I think that no matter where you are in your playing journey, you will encounter some kind of strumming issue. And yes, that includes you more advanced players!

It could be anything from trying to get a simple downstrum technique right to some complicated, off time, rhythmic strumming piece of music.

But everyone had one thing in common: they just wanted to get it right.

I have taught many people at all levels of experience and ability.

I am here to tell you that no matter where you are in your playing: you can overcome whatever your are struggling with in your strumming and achieve some awesome results!

Really.

Most of us simply need some kind of direction. Then, we need a plan of action.

I suppose you can do it on your own. I know I did a long time ago and it took a long time to get it right.

Most of us need someone to help direct us whether that be from a video, a course, or a teacher.

I would encourage you to find someone or someplace to help you with that. It will make your journey so much easier and fun!

Get a lesson or grab a course or find a cool guy on You Tube that knows what he is doing and stick with it.

And then Practice! There is no substitute for that.

For many of you beginners, there is this cool guy on You Tube that has some videos to help with your strumming (you KNEW this was coming, ha!).

This is one of my favorites to teach beginners: Night Moves by Bob Seger. But seriously, if that isn’t your song, just go to the Playlist: Easy Acoustic Guitar Strumming Songs and find something to work on. It will make your life better!