Pick is slipping through my fingers when strumming


jlew523
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Joined: 01/27/19
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jlew523
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Joined: 01/27/19
Posts: 26
08/13/2019 1:28 pm

Hey all,

I have been teaching myself guitar for about 7 months now through GT, and recently I am having trouble holding the pick between my fingers when I strum. It is very frustrating because I can only strum a chord for a bar or two and then the pick slips. Is this normal for beginners? I have so much trouble switching chords and strumming when playing the easy version of Simple Man. I mean it's supposed to be easy, right?

Plese help!


# 1
Guitar Tricks Admin
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Guitar Tricks Admin
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08/13/2019 6:39 pm

Hi there,

It sounds like you may holding the pick too lightly. Holding a pick is something you shouldn't think too much about, just hold it enough so that it doesn't slip from your fingers when you strum.

Also, don't get yourself down if you're struggling. The simple version songs are still challenging for new guitar players. It sounds like you've only played for about 7 months, so you're still pretty early on! It takes time to get a good grasp of the foundations of guitar playing, so be patient and keep practicing.

If you haven't already, I suggest jumping into Guitar Fundamentals 1 or 2 to really build that foundation.

Check it out here: https://www.guitartricks.com/beginner.php


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# 2
jlew523
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jlew523
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08/13/2019 9:10 pm

Thanks for the advice and encouragement.


# 3
casper27292
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casper27292
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08/13/2019 10:25 pm

I am new to guitar tricks as well, this is actually my first month being subscribed, i have had the same issue with my pick slipping out of my finger when strumming, something i found that has helped me a lot was i switched to a lighter pick that was a bit more on the flimsy side to where the pick will give a little when strumming, it has helped a lot, and i added a lot of practice time just trying to get my strumming technique down, just thought i'd add what has helped me with the same issue.


"Sometimes you want to give up the guitar, you'll hate the guitar. But if you stick with it, you're gonna be rewarded."

[br]"Jimi Hendrix"

# 4
manXcat
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manXcat
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08/13/2019 10:27 pm

It is. Easy. Just that some find some things easier than others.

Clearly something in what you're doing at the moment isn't working for you. Your resolution lies in the answer to the question why?

Datum I'm using is acoustic guitar fittted with 12-53s. Same principle applies for electric, but electric is more tolerant of thicker gauge and harder pick materials.

[br]Losing the pick or perception of any problem holding the pick doesn't occur as a issue for me, but things you could also try: a [u]thinner[/u] gauge [u]standard shape and size[/u] pick with a [u]serrated grip[/u]. I find nylon or celluloid best, and [u]preferred for strumming[/u]. Dunlop nylon in a .38mm or .46mm recommended for acoustic strumming. 6.0mm or higher if you want to pick some individual strings or arpeggiate notes too e.g. "Hallelujah".

Things which will make strumming harder. Heavier gauge strings. Too thick a pick. A pick made of a less flexible material. e.g. plastic or Delrin (Tortex). Both reduce elasticity and absorb impact shock. If you don't have a secure grip, the pick will move about excessively or you can drop the pick. Too small a pick will offer a reduced finger/thumb contact patch exacerbating this. e.g. Jazz III.

If having tried all of the above using one finger and thumb and it's still not working for you, try a three 'finger' grip. Thumb with index & forefinger. It offers superior stability without the Darth Vader Death Grip. I use it as a matter of comfort and preference. This technique hasn't impeded anything I've attempted to do with guitar or play yet. With it the pick can be held with less pressure yet with increased stability IMV&E. I hold it just tight enough to not drop/lose it, but especially strumming, not so tight for the finger to pick grip relationship to be rigid. I use the same three finger technique on electric with all picks except for the Jazz III.

At 7 months you should be able to self analyse the reason/s you are experiencing the problem armed with the above. Of course, and not intending to be derogatory, reasonably clean dry hands if not already ritualistically observed.


# 5
Simon Keyes
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Joined: 04/13/19
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Simon Keyes
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08/17/2019 4:08 pm
Originally Posted by: manXcat

you could also try: a [u]thinner[/u] gauge [u]standard shape and size[/u] pick with a [u]serrated grip[/u]. I find nylon or celluloid best, and [u]preferred for strumming[/u]. Dunlop nylon in a .38mm or .46mm recommended for acoustic strumming. 6.0mm or higher if you want to pick some individual strings or arpeggiate notes too e.g. "Hallelujah".

interesting ; is that a well documented recommendation for acoustic ?

i found 0.81" was ok but will experiment with lower thicknesses this coming week.


# 6
JeffS65
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JeffS65
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08/17/2019 6:46 pm
Originally Posted by: Simon Keyes
Originally Posted by: manXcat

you could also try: a [u]thinner[/u] gauge [u]standard shape and size[/u] pick with a [u]serrated grip[/u]. I find nylon or celluloid best, and [u]preferred for strumming[/u]. Dunlop nylon in a .38mm or .46mm recommended for acoustic strumming. 6.0mm or higher if you want to pick some individual strings or arpeggiate notes too e.g. "Hallelujah".

interesting ; is that a well documented recommendation for acoustic ?

i found 0.81" was ok but will experiment with lower thicknesses this coming week.

Honestly, I used a very small and pointy Dunlop Jazz III pick for a very long time. I was more a metal player for most of my playing years from the 80's til now. The more recent years, I'm playing much more bluesly, acoustic and slightly twangy stuff. The Jazz III is not at all useful for that stuff. I hadn't used a standard sized pick with any regularity for decades until last year but knew I needed to return to the stardard picks I'd often referred to as 'dinner plates'.

I went online to Guitar Center and bought a few variety packs if picks to retry.

At first I thought I'd immediately go back to my Dunlop Tortex yellow pick that I loved when I started. Thus far, I seem to be sticking to the same pick but one size up in green (.88mm).

We all have various challenges playing guitar. With a few finger and wrist injuries/issues over the last couple of years, I've found that I have to rewire my playing and thinking to certain aspects of my playing. One of them is not have the typew of pick grip that I used to have. It's only slight but I notice and it affects a little bit of my accuracy.

The pick is a peice of the puzzle. Playing guitar is like a big interconnected machine with many moving parts between you and the guitar. You just want to spend time experiementing with various components (ie - picks etc).


# 7

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