#1
Hey, when is first started playing guitar i was one of the people who couldnt bend their pinky finger without bending the finger next to it. Now half a year later i sorta can but its still nowhere near strong enough to hold down a guitar string - its sluggish and takes too much concentration :| it would help a bunch if i could play with 5 fingers instead 4 so any tips?
#2
other than just practice practice practice...sorry I got nothing else. If it helps I was the same way especially on steel string acoustic guitar.
Si
#3
I can't do my pinky either.

I just use my ring fingerinstead. It's never affected my playing before.
hue
#4
Definitely practice using your pinky, it will do your playing a whole world of good.
#5
I would say just run through scales and chords with the pinky, practice it with everything. It's not going to magically get better unless you actually practice with it.
#6
yup you gotta get the pinky going. my friend who teaches me has better use of his pinky than his ring finger. how are you going to play a c shaped barr chord?
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#7
Try doing long trills with the pinky as well. Just take something like:

e-------5h8p5h8p5h8p5----

and trill on it for as long as is comfortable. It's a quick way to build strength, and also play some chromatic scales to get the pinky going a bit.
#8
Chromatics are kind of unpopular to some because they are not very musical, but other than just trying to play using your pinky, they are definately one way to speed up your pinky's development.

Just commit to spend 10 minutes a day on them and I think you will see results pretty quickly (probably a few weeks). Since you've only been playing half a year, the good news is you haven't had time for habits to be super ingrained.

Also, don't do the straight 1-2-3-4. Even though there's some value to this in synching your hands up, the problem is that after a while your LH fingers just learn to roll in one motion, which won't give you the individual control you need over your pinky. Instead, do the version where you start at a different point in the sequence on each string. So you might do 1-2-3-4 on the 6th string, then 2-3-4-1 on the 5th, 3-4-1-2 on the fourth and so on.

Also, you don't need this exercise very fast to get benefits out of it. Just concentrate on playing it cleanly and precisely with as little finger movement as possible.
#9
Quote by :-D
Try doing long trills with the pinky as well. Just take something like:

e-------5h8p5h8p5h8p5----

and trill on it for as long as is comfortable. It's a quick way to build strength, and also play some chromatic scales to get the pinky going a bit.

This, but do it on the low E string as well where your thumb is behind the neck..... and every string in between.

You could try this neo-classical type lick - all hammer-ons and pull-offs

e-8-5-7-8-7-5-10-7-8-10-8-7-12-8-10-12-10-8

If you know your A minor / C major scale you can take this lick all the way up to the top, on every string.
#10
Practice the hell out of it, there was a riff from a song I played over and over that helped me use it.

I've heard Slash doesn't use his pinky, he seems fine, but I'd definitely recommend learning to use it.
#11
Quote by hazarada
Hey, when is first started playing guitar i was one of the people who couldnt bend their pinky finger without bending the finger next to it. Now half a year later i sorta can but its still nowhere near strong enough to hold down a guitar string - its sluggish and takes too much concentration :| it would help a bunch if i could play with 5 fingers instead 4 so any tips?


6 months isn't very much time. Have patience. If you don't spend whatever time
it takes to concentrate on it now, you'll never get it.

Some people ignore the pinky as much as possible. If you're primarily a pentatonic
kind of player, you can probably get by with that. But, if you do that, some things
will probably remain forever out of your ability to play.

The pinky can be developed to where it's as good as any other finger. It shares
a tendon with the ring finger which is one of the things that makes it harder to
develop.
#12
Quote by hazarada
Hey, when is first started playing guitar i was one of the people who couldnt bend their pinky finger without bending the finger next to it. Now half a year later i sorta can but its still nowhere near strong enough to hold down a guitar string - its sluggish and takes too much concentration :| it would help a bunch if i could play with 5 fingers instead 4 so any tips?

5? You play with your thumb?

On topic: Just practise with it whenever you can. Maybe practise solos and make a rule that you can't use your third finger. This would make you practise with your fourth finger a lot without doing to lots of technical exercise (there's nothing wrong with that, but it can get better).
#13
Quote by 12345abcd3
5? You play with your thumb?


infact yes i can reach all strings pretty easy with my thumb
#14
play guitar hero on medium and use your pinky for the blue button. (Surprisingly this actually helped... Well it helped me... But yeh... I'll shutup now.)
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#15
ok i got similar issues to hazarada cept i been playin for nearly 2years is this significantly worse and would hand grips help cause ive started using them

and if they do say and then hazarada can use them and thats my advice sorted
#16
Just stick rigidly to the one finger per fret rule while practising scales, arpeggios and other exercises, as well as in song playing. Just because you can reach it with your ring finger doesn't mean you should.

Practise is the only solution.
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