In Depth Guitar Lessons and Expert Help


April 17, 2013

Guitar Technique Lesson

More articles by »
Written by: Mike Abbott

In this guitar technique lesson,
you will learn left and right hand positions
that will improve your guitar playing immediately!


1. The Pinky finger should
lightly rest on the pickguard or guitar (if no
pickguard). This technique will help to anchor your hand
so that you can pick the strings more accurately.

A close-up photo of a guitar player using proper technique

2. Wrist and hand should be relaxed

3. Grip the guitar pick with the
thumb and index finger.

  • thumb is across wide
    part of the pick
  • index finger points to
    the sharp corner of the pick
  • about half of the
    length of the pick should be showing

4. The wrist as well as the thumb
and index finger should move to pick the string.

5. When playing scales or single
note runs, keep the pick at a right angle to the guitar
strings. This technique will help you to play faster and
with more accuracy!


1. Pinky finger should not be

2. Wrist and hand should be relaxed

3. When strumming, lightly
brush across the guitar strings with a quick motion. Use
a little wrist and a little arm motion.

4. The chord should sound like one
entity, not separate notes


1. Fingers are numbered 1,2,3,4
(the thumb is not counted)

2. The top of the thumb should be
flush and approximately even with the top of the guitar

3. The Thumb should be lined up
approximately with the Left 2nd finger

4. Nails should be completely

5. Curl the finger and
press the string down with the fingertip. This guitar
technique will help your to play faster with more

6. The fingertip should be next to
the fret desired, not in the middle of the frets.

hands should be relaxed!!

About the Author

Mike Abbott
Mike is a pro guitarist and music educator.  He has performed with such diverse acts as the Rolling Stones Horns, Sammy Davis Jr., and Burt Bacharach.   After spending much of his music career in New York City, He now is a very busy guitarist in the Denver area, performing and teaching extensively. Mike's latest work is a book, The Guitar and Amp Sourcebook, published by Harper Collins and released in December 2012.



Mike Abbott Studio and Live Recordings

Artists web sites: Heavenly Here With You – Almeda Bradshaw
by Mike Abbott

Bill Evans, Jim Hall, Jazz guitar, jazz piano

Mike Abbott Eric Gunnison Duo – Bill Evans Jim Hall Tribute video 2/9/16

  This Bill Evans Jim Hall Tribute Video was taken on Feb. 9th, 2016 at Dazzle Jazz Club in Denver, CO.  please “like” our facebook page! Click Here to Watch The Video
by Mike Abbott



June 2015 – The Mike Abbott Trio

  The Mike Abbott Trio at the 5 Points Jazz Festival May 16th 2015 recorded in Denver, Colorado with  Paul Romaine – drums Mark Simon – bass    
by Mike Abbott


Create a blues guitar solo

How to Create a Blues Guitar Solo Just put the right elements together, and you can create a great blues guitar solo! There are a lot of different types of guitar solos – those which seem to go on forever, those which are...
by Mike Abbott


Soloing Runs and Repeated Ideas

Make your guitar soloing more believable by using runs and ideas! Your guitar soloing will sound boring and aimless if you just string a bunch of guitar licks together. If you combine runs and ideas with a careful choice of lic...
by Mike Abbott