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Step 1 Strumming Exercises

Daniel June 29, 2021

Introduction:

More exercises? Yep. But don’t be put off – these exercises will only take a few minutes, but are highly effective at memorising your chord shapes, improving your chord changing ability and developing your strumming. This is an aspect that separates many beginners from the intermediate guitarists.

Since we started taking guitar students many years ago, we’ve found that anyone who practices these exercises will have a huge advantage when learning songs because they would have already learnt the technique and skill needed to play it.

The Video Lesson:

Practice Video:

The below video repeatedly plays the 1 2 3u4 pattern on an E minor chord. Play along to this, to help you get used to this strumming style.

Notes:

  • Your chord progressions are:
    • Em – A
    • A – D
    • Em – D
    • E – A
  • Your strumming patterns are:
    • d
    • 1   2   3 u 4
  • Keep in mind that any numbered strum will be downward because it occurs on the beat
  • Practice the chord changes on their own and the strumming on it’s own before combining
  • Try and strum each pattern at least four times in a row
  • As always, try playing along with the video as much as possible
  • A trick to improve strumming and chord changing is to keep strumming no matter what, and fix the chord while you keep playing
  • Try strumming for 60 seconds without making a mistake, even if you’re not holding any chord