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A lot of guitarists can play a few fingerpicking songs and knock out some fingerstyle patterns but a lot don’t ever do any exercises for their fingerpicking hand. Yet, they wonder why they lack speed, dexterity and agility with their picking hand. This video, featuring two simple fingerpicking exercises will help you with this. 

Download the tab for the exercises (they are really simple but it’s what you do with them that counts!

Remember, this lesson is all about the focus on getting great tone – which means aiming for a non-scratchy sound which is bright, clear and has good volume.

  • It’s not just a case of playing the exercises but it is a case of playing them really well. That is one of the reasons these fingerstyle exercises and techniques are simple but remember, simple works.
  • You don’t need to learn lots of crazy exercises to give your fingers a good work out and improve your fingerpicking tone, agility and all-round sound.

Remember, as described in this fingerpicking tips lesson, muscle memory plays a big part with fingerstyle playing.

If you want more fingerpicking advice, specifically with your fingerpicking hand and learning the essential and exciting fingerpicking patterns, then check out my book, Fingerstyle 101 (which is on offer at the moment).

Leave a comment and let me know your thoughts on playing these fingerpicking exercises, and if you want more of them!


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Logan Hager
October 16, 2022 Reply

Hey Dan,
I absolutely LOVED this lesson and would love to see more like this!!
Also loved the “just get ’em drunk” part HAHAHA – good stuff there!!

I have not been able to find the Travis picking book you mentioned in this lesson….

Thanks much Dan!

January 23, 2023 Reply

Love this video. I will give it a go when I do my practice today. I have your fingerpicking 101 book and have looked at it and started it a bit but I am trying to decide how I want my practice to go. I am also very interested in Bluegrass guitar so am learning that too. I am a very beginner but love what I am doing.

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