One of my favourite films of all time is Terminator 2: Judgment Day. I remember watching it as a kid with my dad on VHS – I was probably only 8 at the time (and the film had a 15 rating here in the UK, so he might be mortified if he knew I told you this!) It is a great film and in it, there is a scene that reminds me of how it feels to play guitar each day and is a great reminder of the importance of guitar warm-up exercises.
Towards the end of the movie, the T-1000 terminator (the bad guy if you have not seen it) gets covered in liquid nitrogen and slowly starts to freeze while trying to assassinate John Conner.
As the T-1000 cracks, breaks, and battles desperately, trying to break free…
It makes me think of how it feels to play guitar first thing each day…
Particularly on a cold day or a day where my fingers are not feeling all that nimble.
You might know the feeling; your hands are so cold they just don’t want to move fluently.
It can be worse for my one-to-one students too as…
They have to drive over to my studio and in the winter months, their hands will naturally be colder from being outdoors, so by the time they get to my studio their hands might be super stiff…
So much so they make the T-1000 look like he’s all wrapped up with cosy gloves and a hot mug of cocoa.
Anyway, I quickly realised years ago that students need to get properly warmed up before they even touch the guitar.
I call this a “Pre-Warm up” and it is a really useful thing to do for your playing.
A Pre-Warm up is where you spend a few minutes (before you pick up the guitar), actually warming up your hands…
Loosening the joints and gently increasing the stretches so you don’t injure yourself.
A few years ago, I developed some nice little guitar Pre-Warm up exercises that not only help to alleviate many of the above issues but also over time will…
Help you to get your fingers nimbler and more dexterous.
A cool bonus is that you can do these Pre-Warm up exercises without the guitar, like when relaxing in front of the TV before you play.
I have filmed a new video on exactly how I teach students to do this.
It is available for those in my membership programme as each month I release a brand-new video lesson on a different subject.
There are more lessons released each month in the membership programme, but unlike other lessons in the membership, these 10-minute deep-dive lessons are NOT available at a later date.
They are there to reward and thank current members.
P.S. Whether you are a member or not, ensure you get those hands properly warmed up before picking up the guitar. Your playing will be more enjoyable, and your chance of injury will drop. Hasta la vista, baby!
P.P.S. This post was originally taken from Dan Thorpe’s private email list. To get blog posts like this sent to you which are full of great tips to make fingerpicking, strumming, and learning guitar more enjoyable (especially if you are over 40) join Dan’s list. It’s 100% free, HERE.