Earned a bachelors in music from the University of the Arts in 1997, Member of the Registry of Guitar Tutors since...

Classical Right Hand pt 1

Right hand technique is very important to achieve mastery of classical guitar.

Right hand technique is very important to achieve mastery of classical guitar.

The most important thing to remember is to keep your hand relaxed and as still as possible while striking the strings with your fingers by moving them mainly at the middle knuckle with a relaxed motion.

Your thumb should be placed in front of your fingers so you have clearance for the follow-through of your technique - your fingers will be placed behind your thumb for this same reason.

The striking surface of your thumb will be on the side. The striking surface of your fingers will be just under the tips on the pads.

The stroke of each finger should follow through in the direction of the palm.

To condition your fingers I included 2 exercises below:

Ex 1

Ex 2

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Warm Regards,

Chris Elmore
Elmore Music


Using the pads of the fingers

Hi, Chris.

In your video, you mentioned using the pads of the fingers instead of the nails. Is there a particular reason for that?


RE: Using the pads of the fingers

Hey, Alpha.

If you use your nails to hold down the strings, you won't get the nice, clean sound that you're looking for. There might also be buzzing. It's best to have the fingernails of your fretting hand to be trimmed so that they don't get in the way.

Go ahead and try using your fingernails to hold down the strings. You'll quickly realize why it isn't recommended. :)

On the other hand (pun intended!), it's advisable to grow the fingernails on your plucking hand, especially if you're trying to play a classical guitar piece. Using your nails to pluck instead of the pads of the fingers really adds a nice richness to the quality of the tone produced.

But again, make sure you keep those nails filed as they tend to chip from all the plucking.

Happy guitaring!