PostureFinding a position that is comfortable to be in for period of 20 or 30 minutes (or longer,
depending on your level of motivation) is of the utmost importance. If you are feeling undo tension immediately
upon starting to practice, chances are we need to modify something about your sitting or standing position. I
believe since we are all built a little differently that there should be just some general guidelines and let the
student sort of grow into his comfortable position. Be sure to take breaks every 20 or 30 minutes. Stand up, walk
around, stretch out etc.........do some jumping jacks! But after a few minutes off get right back to another
stretch of focused practicing.
Guitar Posture -
Acoustic and Electric
1. Sit in a straight back chair with no
2. Thighs should be parallel with the floor so guitar
does not want to slip down and off.
3. The guitar's waist should rest on the right leg if
you are right handed.
4. Strumming hand sort of hangs over and hugs guitar
body and keeps it stable. Do not hold the neck in postion with the left hand. You should be able to release
the neck with left hand and the guitar should stay pretty much where it was.
5. The left hand should be able to approach the neck
naturally and comfortablly. Thumb behind the neck, fingers nicely curved over the fretboard. No part of the palm
touching the neck (for now). Fingertips up to the back of the fret.
6. The pick should fall over the sound hole whether
strumming or picking. Not up by the neck or by the bridge.
7. You can build a "bridge" from strumming arm to top
of guitar with a strumming hand finger for now, if it helps you feel a bit more connected while playing single
notes only NOT while strumming. It will give the picking hand help with spacial awareness of the strings and
distancing issues. It should seem obvious why it would not be a good idea to have the strumming hand connected to
the guitar's top while trying to strum.
8. Do not tilt the guitar back to see what fret you
are on. Use the fret indicators.
9. Make sure you have the right sized guitar. They do
make 3/4 and 1/2 guitars for children and small adults.
10. When standing we use a strap to keep the guitar in
place. As a general rule you should adjust your strap so that your guitar is at approximatly the same place as when
you sit. I advise against using a strap when sitting. It serves no real purpose and is a general nusiance
11. Demonstrate the angle of the strumming are to the
guitar. almost but not quite paralell to the strings. This creates an advantages angle for strumming and palm
muting and is just a good attitude for the strumming/picking hand to have in general.