For years (yes, I know this is bad) I didn't use my pinky often. I'd like to change that. Any ideas?
Stop not using it.
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hammer/pull/trill drills, sliding drills, bending drills....

jus do some drills, and make a point of using it when you play music.
You just have to make up your mind to use it whenever you can. Make sure you never ignore your little finger and before you know it you will be pressing all kinds of frets perfectly with it. It is one of the first obstacles that every guitarist has to overcome. A lot of them take the easy route by trying to make do with 4 fingers but end up regretting later. Those who took the trouble to solve the problem know that it got over before they even realised.
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Stop not using it.

It's quite literally this simple.
Yeah I'm having this problem as well. I use it but not as much as I should.
This was a number of years ago, but I went cold turkey and switched to strict one finger per fret fingering. This was hands down one of the best things I ever did for my playing. You never have to think about what finger to put where. I also use the classical grip on the neck 99% of the time (if I want to do a big bend far up the high E string I'll switch to the thumb over the neck grip, but that's it). This, combined with the one finger per fret approach, makes it a lot easier to play with your fingers close to the fret board. I also do my bends with my pinky when appropriate (obviously not just my pinky, I support it with other fingers). That is great for all those bends that show up all the time, like bending to the E or A when you're in the 12th position. It's great..the bends are right there, without having to adjust to get your ring finger in place.
Needless to say, when you initially switch this is like boot camp for your pinky. You are suddenly using it all the time. For me, it was well worth it.
^ that reminds me of one thing I used to do (and still do once in a while). Improvise for 10 minutes. The catch: you are only allowed to use your index finger and pinky. At first it sounds god awful, but after a while you settle in and start to get inventive with things you might never try otherwise. Meanwhile, the pinky is getting quite the workout.
what i used to do to get used to using my pinky was running all the modes in the key of g up and down, it two octaves. be sure to use proper fingerings so you utilize the pinky. this helped me to start using my pinky.

and to be truthful, i am a rather accomplished player now, but i dont always use my pinky. if im playing jazz or classical, or really intracate runs, i use the pinky. when im playing blues and alot of country, and even just classic rock sounding stuff, im usually not useing the pinky much.
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Try some hammer-ons/pull-offs with fingers 1-4, 2-4, 3-4! Be EXTRA careful and do stretching exercises, as well... Also massage your hand, for increased blood circulation... You don't want to hurt your pinky...
And the best advice is... DON'T GET BORED! These very simple exercises are very boring but very effective, if practiced daily as a routine! I'm a right-handed guitarist and, after 2 months of daily routines like this one, I can do almost the same things my left hand does with my right hand...
Last edited by Johnny Andrew at Mar 18, 2014,