Finger exercises are important because they build on essential skills that will help your playing. No matter what instrument you play, piano, guitar, any stringed instrument finger strength, accuracy and stamina can be built through finger exercises. As musicians we strive to better our technique and improve our skills so we can play faster, more complicated things. This is our goal.
Moving on, you’ll want to practice all these exercises with a metronome, this would build on our previous lesson. Set your metronome that you hopefully bought after my last post to something comfortable. The speed should be fast enough so that it’s challenging, but not so fast that you are stumbling to keep up.
Now, take your chosen instrument, I’ll use guitar for the written examples, but you can refer to the sheet music in the links. Now, starting from the top string play the open string, then the first fret, then the second, then the third, then the forth. After that, move your hand down one fret and repeat the process. You should repeat this on all strings across the fretbord until your forth fingers land on the fifteenth fret. When you get there, reverse the exercise, going backwards down the neck.
Another good exercise for practicing accuracy is sliding exercise. Starting on the high string, place your finger on the first fret and slide to the third fret, then the fifth fret make, make sure that these notes ring clear and that your fingers don’t slide past the notes. After you get all the way to the twelfth fret, reverse the exercise.
I usually do these exercises for about twenty minutes. Then, I move to running through all the songs I know. This adds a lot of fun to the experience, and makes sure that you, the player is still interested in the instrument.
After my songs, I usually jam over a back track for about twenty minutes. This lets you experiment with your scales and keys to come up with more ideas for exercises. After that I put my guitar down, so do those. Then I take about an hour and I just listen to music, the same artists I just played, other ones in other genres it doesn't really matter. What does matter, is that you are conscientiously dissecting and appreciating the music. It should fill you with different melodies for your music
Devin is a student in the Professional Writing program at Algonquin College. He has be writing on and off for the past five years. In his spare time he enjoys learning all he can about obscure rock bands