One of those guitar basics that people fail to address is how to properly hold a guitar pick. It may sound simple, but there is actually a method to ensure that you avoid dropping it, slipping, or striking all the strings when you don’t mean to. Let’s get into it.
For this exercise, we’re going to assume that you are right-handed. Don’t worry – just mirror these motions on your left hand, and it will work fine.
Balance your pick on top of your index finger, holding it as if you were going to strum the guitar. Ensure that the tip of the pick is in line with the tip of your finger, and gently place your thumb on top of the pick. If you did it right, you should see a little bit of the pick’s sides, and of course, the tip of it. Your thumb should cover the area on the “bottom” of the pick, giving you a bit of traction and a place to hold onto when you’re playing.
Why Is It So Important to Hold it Right?
Digging down to your form, and how you hold your pick, is one of the building blocks of guitar basics. Holding your pick properly helps you keep up proper strum patterns when playing, and prevents you from dropping your pick, which is more likely to happen if you’re standing and playing at the same time.
If you drop your pick while playing, it’s either going to fall into your acoustic guitar, or you’ll be unable to properly play your electric guitar. You can get away with thumb strumming on an acoustic, but when you want to shred on an electric guitar, not having a pick will come out choppy, with some nasty ringing to it.