Increasing Pinky Finger Strength

This lesson will help you increase the fretting strength in your pinky-finger (if done religiously, of course).

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Ultimate Guitar
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Been playing for over two years, I know the struggle of pinky-fretting. I used to just play with my index, middle, and ring finger.

These exercises can help you gain the strength and agility as your favorite guitar player's pinky (lol) and help with the other fingers as well.

Start practicing these slowly to gain the strength and eventually get faster to gain the speed.

Picking Exercise 1

E|-------------------------------------------------------------6-5-7-5-8-5-|
B|-------------------------------------------------6-5-7-5-8-5-------------|
G|-------------------------------------6-5-7-5-8-5-------------------------|
D|-------------------------6-5-7-5-8-5-------------------------------------|
A|-------------6-5-7-5-8-5-------------------------------------------------|
E|-6-5-7-5-8-5-------------------------------------------------------------|
m i r i p i m i r i p i m i r i p i m i r i p i m i r i p i m i r i p i
Fret fingers
i - index
m - middle
r - ring
p - pinky

Picking Exercise 2

E|-----------------------------------------5-8-5-8-|
B|---------------------------------5-8-5-8---------|
G|-------------------------5-8-5-8-----------------|
D|-----------------5-8-5-8-------------------------|
A|---------5-8-5-8---------------------------------|
E|-5-8-5-8-----------------------------------------|
i p i p i p i p i p i p i p i p i p i p i p i p
Hammering-on and pulling-off exercises increase hammer and finger strength.

Pulling-Off Exercise 1

E|-------------------------------------------------------------6p5-7p5-8p5-|
B|-------------------------------------------------6p5-7p5-8p5-------------|
G|-------------------------------------6p5-7p5-8p5-------------------------|
D|-------------------------6p5-7p5-8p5-------------------------------------|
A|-------------6p5-7p5-8p5-------------------------------------------------|
E|-6p5-7p5-8p5-------------------------------------------------------------|
m i r i p i m i r i p i m i r i p i m i r i p i m i r i p i m i r i p i

Hammering Exercise 2

E|-----------------------------------------5h8-5h8-|
B|---------------------------------5h8-5h8---------|
G|-------------------------5h8-5h8-----------------|
D|-----------------5h8-5h8-------------------------|
A|---------5h8-5h8---------------------------------|
E|-5h8-5h8-----------------------------------------|
i p i p i p i p i p i p i p i p i p i p i p i p
You'll be playing with your pinky in no time!

3 comments sorted by best / new / date

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    josephbburg
    I got a lot better at using my pinky when i decided to stop being stubborn and JUST use it. My problem is that the riffs I've learned that use my full spread are too hard to play standing up (because I practice sitting, and adjusting the strap can only help me so much). I guess I should practice playing standing more. And maybe get a Gibson so the frets are closer! (Gibsons have a shorter scale length)
    EdwardMasters
    Try the strap as high as your guitar is when youre sitting down. I know it might look kinda odd but eh Marc Okubo