Just can't switch between chords

Guitar Tricks Forum > Guitar Basics > Just can't switch between chords

ray.anish94

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Joined: 02/08/19

Posts: 9

Hi everyone. I am new to the guitar. It has been a few months since I purchased my Guitar Tricks membership and my progress has been incredibly slow. I am just not able to train my fingers to play. It has been close to one and half months since I started Lisa's lesson on simple A minor and E chords. Despite practicing for days I still can't move my fingers fast enough to switch between A minor and E chords. Plus I find A minor hard to play as it involves two fingers. Can someone help me, please?

#1

Hi everyone. I am new to the guitar. It has been a few months since I purchased my Guitar Tricks membership and my progress has been incredibly slow. I am just not able to train my fingers to play. It has been close to one and half months since I started Lisa's lesson on simple A minor and E chords. Despite practicing for days I still can't move my fingers fast enough to switch between A minor and E chords. Plus I find A minor hard to play as it involves two fingers. Can someone help me, please?

chris512

Full Access

Joined: 04/23/20

Posts: 28

Play far slower than you want to ultimately play. You are building both strength and precision in two hands and this takes slow, intentional practice. Here's a proven method:

Find the speed where you can currently make the chord changes comfortably. Grab a metronome or use the one in the toolbox on this site to determine what that speed is. Then speed the metronome up by two beats above your comfortable speed and play at that speed until you're starting to feel it. Then turn the metronome down by one beat until you're very comfortable. Then go up two beats and start again. Up 2, down 1 until comfortable. Then up 2 again.

Guitar is hard in the beginning but if you practice slowly and every day you will become comfortable and proficient. The key is to not give up. Also, don't just do this as your only item during practice. You will only get frustrated. Spend ten minutes on this every day then go learn some songs or other techniques for the rest of your practice.

Even the guitar wizards who teach here went through what you are dealing with. We all have (and still do really, every one of us has a current speed limit we are working on). Don't quit, you can do this!

#2

Play far slower than you want to ultimately play. You are building both strength and precision in two hands and this takes slow, intentional practice. Here's a proven method:

Find the speed where you can currently make the chord changes comfortably. Grab a metronome or use the one in the toolbox on this site to determine what that speed is. Then speed the metronome up by two beats above your comfortable speed and play at that speed until you're starting to feel it. Then turn the metronome down by one beat until you're very comfortable. Then go up two beats and start again. Up 2, down 1 until comfortable. Then up 2 again.

Guitar is hard in the beginning but if you practice slowly and every day you will become comfortable and proficient. The key is to not give up. Also, don't just do this as your only item during practice. You will only get frustrated. Spend ten minutes on this every day then go learn some songs or other techniques for the rest of your practice.

Even the guitar wizards who teach here went through what you are dealing with. We all have (and still do really, every one of us has a current speed limit we are working on). Don't quit, you can do this!

ray.anish94

Full Access

Joined: 02/08/19

Posts: 9

Hi chris512. Thank you so much for your help and motivation. I have renewed hope now. Also, I guess I still haven't used the full capabilities of Guitar Tricks. I mostly just rely only on Lisa's lessons and then I just practice. I have never used the toolbox on the site before. Could you help me and tell me where it is?

#3

Hi chris512. Thank you so much for your help and motivation. I have renewed hope now. Also, I guess I still haven't used the full capabilities of Guitar Tricks. I mostly just rely only on Lisa's lessons and then I just practice. I have never used the toolbox on the site before. Could you help me and tell me where it is?

chris512

Full Access

Joined: 04/23/20

Posts: 28

Hi Ray,

The Toolbox link is on the left side of the homepage. You'll see the metronome in there. Lisa's lessons are great. My advice is to take small breaks from her lessons to work on other things, then come back. You'll be amazed how her basic concepts come together and click in your brain when you go off and apply them to something else. Pick a song to learn from the song section of GT and go do that for a couple days before coming back to your core lessons.

Learning an instrument requires your brain to wire things together while you're doing other things, then suddenly your chords become clean or your transitions become fluid. You still have to practice but actual improvement often times just sort of feels sudden as though you figured it out while sleeping. I've been a drummer for over 30 years and have noodled with guitar that entire time. This year I decided to get serious about guitar and my improvement experience is identical to my drumming experience. The biggest difference is the caliber of instructor talent available here to help and the community of GT members who will give you that nudge to keep going when you feel discouraged.

Good Luck!

#4

Hi Ray,

The Toolbox link is on the left side of the homepage. You'll see the metronome in there. Lisa's lessons are great. My advice is to take small breaks from her lessons to work on other things, then come back. You'll be amazed how her basic concepts come together and click in your brain when you go off and apply them to something else. Pick a song to learn from the song section of GT and go do that for a couple days before coming back to your core lessons.

Learning an instrument requires your brain to wire things together while you're doing other things, then suddenly your chords become clean or your transitions become fluid. You still have to practice but actual improvement often times just sort of feels sudden as though you figured it out while sleeping. I've been a drummer for over 30 years and have noodled with guitar that entire time. This year I decided to get serious about guitar and my improvement experience is identical to my drumming experience. The biggest difference is the caliber of instructor talent available here to help and the community of GT members who will give you that nudge to keep going when you feel discouraged.

Good Luck!

Kingstonontario

Full Access

Joined: 04/13/20

Posts: 4

Don't give up. I too am anewbie and been a member since March. I am far from proficent and my chord changes are horrible. However I notice that I am slowly getting better. When switching from A minor to E or E minor move the middle and ring finger together at the same time like they are fused together as they will land in the same postion just on the other strings. I struggle with G to C but I keep at it. I still suck but its getting better. Days I want to hang up the guitar and find a new hobby but I'm too stubborn to quit. Hang in there. We are not alone in our struggles...

#5

Don't give up. I too am anewbie and been a member since March. I am far from proficent and my chord changes are horrible. However I notice that I am slowly getting better. When switching from A minor to E or E minor move the middle and ring finger together at the same time like they are fused together as they will land in the same postion just on the other strings. I struggle with G to C but I keep at it. I still suck but its getting better. Days I want to hang up the guitar and find a new hobby but I'm too stubborn to quit. Hang in there. We are not alone in our struggles...

EddieMoon

Full Access

Joined: 07/09/20

Posts: 2

Hi Ray, I'm also new to the guitar, and have had my membership only a little while. I feel your pain! I've been feeling clumsy and wondering if I've been given chipolata sausage fingers as a cruel twist of fate! I'm not much ahead of you to be fair, and am finding Lisa to be a very good teacher indeed, however tonight I started the 3 string lesson Early Bird Gala, and now I definitely know I've got full sized Savaloy sausage fingers ;~) I've stopped for tonight as I cannot for the life of me transition between strings on either my picking hand or my fretting hand! Also struggling not to hit multiple strings at the same time! Reading about this I can only hope that the positive stories are true and that it will get better! From what I have read posture and positioning are very important. I found some videos on YouTube useful too. Good luck, keep at it - I think it's going to be a long journey for me, but hopefully a fun one.

#6

Hi Ray, I'm also new to the guitar, and have had my membership only a little while. I feel your pain! I've been feeling clumsy and wondering if I've been given chipolata sausage fingers as a cruel twist of fate! I'm not much ahead of you to be fair, and am finding Lisa to be a very good teacher indeed, however tonight I started the 3 string lesson Early Bird Gala, and now I definitely know I've got full sized Savaloy sausage fingers ;~) I've stopped for tonight as I cannot for the life of me transition between strings on either my picking hand or my fretting hand! Also struggling not to hit multiple strings at the same time! Reading about this I can only hope that the positive stories are true and that it will get better! From what I have read posture and positioning are very important. I found some videos on YouTube useful too. Good luck, keep at it - I think it's going to be a long journey for me, but hopefully a fun one.

chrisgallagher230660

Full Access

Joined: 05/27/20

Posts: 1

Originally Posted by: chris512

Play far slower than you want to ultimately play. You are building both strength and precision in two hands and this takes slow, intentional practice. Here's a proven method:

Find the speed where you can currently make the chord changes comfortably. Grab a metronome or use the one in the toolbox on this site to determine what that speed is. Then speed the metronome up by two beats above your comfortable speed and play at that speed until you're starting to feel it. Then turn the metronome down by one beat until you're very comfortable. Then go up two beats and start again. Up 2, down 1 until comfortable. Then up 2 again.

Guitar is hard in the beginning but if you practice slowly and every day you will become comfortable and proficient. The key is to not give up. Also, don't just do this as your only item during practice. You will only get frustrated. Spend ten minutes on this every day then go learn some songs or other techniques for the rest of your practice.

Even the guitar wizards who teach here went through what you are dealing with. We all have (and still do really, every one of us has a current speed limit we are working on). Don't quit, you can do this!

Hi ( another ) Chris ,

This is great advice , I was becoming very fixated and frustrated with the lessons here on guitar tricks. I now take a break every second day and using Youtube etc. Ive started learning the intro riffs to Floyd , Nirvana and more. This has helped me enjoy the learning process and kept me encouraged. It also has (unknowingly) helped muscle memory for my fingers.

Im still playing badly but really enjoying the learning,

Chris.

#7

Originally Posted by: chris512

Play far slower than you want to ultimately play. You are building both strength and precision in two hands and this takes slow, intentional practice. Here's a proven method:

Find the speed where you can currently make the chord changes comfortably. Grab a metronome or use the one in the toolbox on this site to determine what that speed is. Then speed the metronome up by two beats above your comfortable speed and play at that speed until you're starting to feel it. Then turn the metronome down by one beat until you're very comfortable. Then go up two beats and start again. Up 2, down 1 until comfortable. Then up 2 again.

Guitar is hard in the beginning but if you practice slowly and every day you will become comfortable and proficient. The key is to not give up. Also, don't just do this as your only item during practice. You will only get frustrated. Spend ten minutes on this every day then go learn some songs or other techniques for the rest of your practice.

Even the guitar wizards who teach here went through what you are dealing with. We all have (and still do really, every one of us has a current speed limit we are working on). Don't quit, you can do this!

Hi ( another ) Chris ,

This is great advice , I was becoming very fixated and frustrated with the lessons here on guitar tricks. I now take a break every second day and using Youtube etc. Ive started learning the intro riffs to Floyd , Nirvana and more. This has helped me enjoy the learning process and kept me encouraged. It also has (unknowingly) helped muscle memory for my fingers.

Im still playing badly but really enjoying the learning,

Chris.

ddiddler

Full Access

Joined: 05/13/20

Posts: 24

our expectations are too high.

some things will go better than others over time but if we get our practice time in to perspective we can see what a long enjoyable path we have ahead of us.

1 hr per day for 10 years 3650 hours

number of hours to full proficiency if ever 10,000

It's only 30 years

Yay , I'll be 96

Just get a little better every time we pick that guitar up.

#8

our expectations are too high.

some things will go better than others over time but if we get our practice time in to perspective we can see what a long enjoyable path we have ahead of us.

1 hr per day for 10 years 3650 hours

number of hours to full proficiency if ever 10,000

It's only 30 years

Yay , I'll be 96

Just get a little better every time we pick that guitar up.

ddiddler

Full Access

Joined: 05/13/20

Posts: 24

our expectations are too high.

some things will go better than others over time but if we get our prasctice time in to perspective we can see what a long enjoyable path we have ahead of us.

1 hr per day for 10 years 3650 hours

number of hours to full proficiency if ever 10,000

It's only 30 years

Yay , I'll be 96

Just get a little better every time we pick that guitar up.

#9

our expectations are too high.

some things will go better than others over time but if we get our prasctice time in to perspective we can see what a long enjoyable path we have ahead of us.

1 hr per day for 10 years 3650 hours

number of hours to full proficiency if ever 10,000

It's only 30 years

Yay , I'll be 96

Just get a little better every time we pick that guitar up.

patmontgomery969

Full Access

Joined: 01/16/20

Posts: 2

I have the same problem - especially with A to/from G and C to/from G.

However, (there's always a however) ...

You can slow down the speed of the video lesson (say to 0.75x or even 0.5x) and it doesn't change the pitch of the tune being played! Amazeballs!

This might help give you a little longer to get your fingers in position.

#10

I have the same problem - especially with A to/from G and C to/from G.

However, (there's always a however) ...

You can slow down the speed of the video lesson (say to 0.75x or even 0.5x) and it doesn't change the pitch of the tune being played! Amazeballs!

This might help give you a little longer to get your fingers in position.