Monday, May 3, 2010


Congratulations! We had reached this far to continue these tutorials in Guitar tutorials for beginners to a higher level. Good work on your last lesson and I’m hoping that you’re learning this thing in the right process to make you better upon playing this instrument. Here in this section, I will now discuss how you can strum the guitar for the first time or rather strum the string with me in the first place. I wouldn’t know if you had strummed it before or maybe, you are practicing a lot and try exploring it. So, I will just assume that you wanted to learn the basics on how to make it sound good while you hit these strings with a chord in the fret board.

In these Guitar tutorials for beginners, you need to learn every detail. You must learn this thing in order for you to understand the terms that I will be using in the next topic we will be doing, accompanied with this tutorial. So, to eradicate that problem of misunderstanding or you’re missing something in it before you move to the next the round of this tutorial, you must concentrate and practice this. If you had perfected to understand every single detail about this topic then, you’re ready for the next lesson. 

First things first, before you hit those strings

The first thing you need to consider is the position of you and your guitar in your body. Positioning it in the right way can make it convenient and comfortable to play it. This is kind of a very obvious one, but, I have seen some of the beginners I had taught in the past had a difficulty playing it. Why? The position isn’t correct and that makes it hard to make a good sound, out of it. This is the basic element in order to make a good sound while you strum it. And wrong position about anything, I think, isn’t making any good to you. This is the advice I hoped you will be following. The right position can only be simple and you just need to put the guitar in your right lap and find a distinct position of your body to make it comfortable for you to strum the guitar. Let you’re right arm or if your left hander, your left arm (Off course!) to rest in the second hump (usually, this will be the bigger curve) in the body of the guitar in the side or If you had putted the guitar in your lap, then in the top right portion from the body of the guitar.  And your other arm will be in-charged making chords in the fret board. Your arm that does the chord must be outwards to your body not inwards. This will make you more ease in making a chord in the fret board while you strum it.

Just strum first

Now, you know the right position. We will now proceed to strum the string. You will strum it without doing any chords first. Why? As far as my experience teaching a guitar is concerned, this is a hard thing for me to make my student understand how to strum correctly. If I will teach you to strum while you do the chords will give you a hard time and this will turn you down and forget about learning it after all. So, to prevent this from happening, you need to do this first. This is the easiest way to make you perfect this thing and to fully realize how to do it and make it sound right, when you hit it with the chords at the same time.

To do this more easily, we will be considering each strum or hit to all the strings with “up” and “down” terms. If you strum the string downward, logically, it will be called as “down” and if you strum it upward, then it is called as “up”. Next, is the term I used if you strummed it “down” and you immediately followed it with an “up” strum is called a “cycle”. Each cycle that you produce is equivalent to a “count”.

If you know how to dance, then that’s the count I’ve been taking about. Or, in your P.E. (Physical Education) class when you do the exercise, you don’t just do it. But you count each particular routine 1,2,3,4, right? That’s what we needed. We will apply this rule in here. Now, strum the string without any chords, up and down once. In doing so, you had made a cycle. To make it more interesting, you can strum it a little faster and do it continuously. Count each cycle up until you had reached the count of 4. That’s how to strum! But, that’s not all. That’s just a brief example. If you want to do a particular song, then, you need a lot of cycles to do it. Just follow these instructions and you’re off to do your strumming with a chord.

So, what now

 So, you had learned the basic of strumming here at Guitar tutorials for beginners.  It’s quite simple, isn’t it? This is a very easy task that you can practice all day with no difficulty after all. Let’s dig deeper to this topic and learn more about its technicalities.
Usually, beginners make a robot like sound when they’re strumming the guitar for their first try or in their first full song. These are the reasons why they make this sound ugly: Their arms weren’t relaxed and they’re not confident doing it. Another thing is they’re not using their wrist and instead using the whole arm to do it. You can strum with that behavior but you can’t sound good in that. Use your wrist and relax your hand, go with the flow of the rhythm of the song. One of the most effective ways is to study or memorize the beat of the song. This will make you familiar with the timing on strumming.
This is important for you to make it sound more like a song and not just strumming. Strumming can tell what songs you’re playing even you do the same chord progressions in the guitar.

Play it, with simple chords first

I will recommend chords that you can practice you’re strumming skill with it. This will help you more comfortable strum the string with a chord. These chords, basic family chords, are easy to do. Again no bar/ flat cause it will give you a headache and we don’t want that to happen. G, D, E Minor or Em and C will be the chords you’ll be using and will be practicing to sharpen your skills in strumming. Look for these chords in a guitar chords chart (no other place you can find it) and just practice to make a cycle with each chords first. Playing songs will be discussed in our next lesson with chord routines, its progressions and when to change your chords in a particular song.
That’s it! The basic things you need to know on how to strum a guitar. Hoped that you learned it all and studied all the details that we need to precede to our next topic. This topic will be about playing with a song. Now, I know that you’re waiting for this to come. Thanks for dropping by, here at Guitar tutorials for beginners, to learn this stuff. Hope to see you soon.