Im desperate for some new practise routines for my strumming hand. I don't seem to be making any progress. Also i find it very hard to listen to a song and hear what sort of strumming patterns are being used. Any tips ?
Listen to songs with more pronounced strum patterns to develop an ear for it. Start with stuff like Bob Dylan (EG; Knockin' on Heaven's Door), CCR (EG; Bad Moon Risin'), etc. Picking out strum patterns is mostly dependant on your ear, so listen closely and often.

As far as exercises, just try simple combinations of upstrokes and downstrokes to a metronome. Like D U D U D U, D D U D D U, D U U D D U U D, D U D D U D U D D U, etc. Mix em up. However, the metronome is key. Doing alternate strokes to a steady beat will help you develop timing, and mixing up the strum patterns will make it easier to create different rythms and help you loosen up your strum hand rather than playing "rigid", which I see a lot of beginners do (including myself when I first started).
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