Fandom

Guitar Wiki

Alternate Picking

331pages on
this wiki
Add New Page
Talk0 Share

Template:Resources

Techniques








Alternate Picking is a picking technique whereby you alternate between up and down strokes to pick, instead of using consecutive downstrokes. Therefore increasing speed and efficiency.


When alternate picking keep these in mind:

  • Maintain as little movement in your picking hand as possible.
  • Use short up and down strokes.
  • Keep the picking hand relaxed.
  • Try to keep the pick flat when picking, this will make is easier to move across the strings in either direction.


d - Downstroke
u - Upstroke


Single String Exercises

Simple exercise ascending up the fretboard. Make sure each note is clear.
e|-0-0-0-0--2-2-2-2--4-4-4-4--5-5-5-5--4-4-4-4--2-2-2-2--0-0-0-0-|
B|---------------------------------------------------------------|
G|---------------------------------------------------------------|
D|---------------------------------------------------------------|
A|---------------------------------------------------------------|
E|---------------------------------------------------------------|
   d u d u  d u d u  d u d u  d u d u  d u d u  d u d u  d u d u


Another simple exercise, this time decending down the fretboard.
Make sure each note is clear.
e|-9-9-9-9--7-7-7-7--5-5-5-5--7-7-7-7--3-3-3-3--5-5-5-5--2-2-2-2--3-3-3-3-|
B|------------------------------------------------------------------------|
G|------------------------------------------------------------------------|
D|------------------------------------------------------------------------|
A|------------------------------------------------------------------------|
E|------------------------------------------------------------------------|
   d u d u  d u d u  d u d u  d u d u  d u d u  d u d u  d u d u  d u d u  


This practices fretting and picking hand coordernation.
Make sure each note rings out clearly.
e|-3-0-5-0-7-0-5-0--3-0-5-0-7-0-5-0--5-0-7-0-9-0-7-0--5-0-7-0-9-0-7-0-|
B|--------------------------------------------------------------------|
G|--------------------------------------------------------------------|
D|--------------------------------------------------------------------|
A|--------------------------------------------------------------------|
E|--------------------------------------------------------------------|
   d u d u d u d u  d u d u d u d u  d u d u d u d u  d u d u d u d u


Six String Exercises

This exercise practices fretting and picking hand coordernation. Use all four fingers
to fret the notes and make sure all the notes ring out clearly.
e|---------------------------------------------------------9-10-11-12-|
B|----------------------------------------------9-10-11-12------------|
G|-----------------------------------9-10-11-12-----------------------|
D|-----------------------9-10-11-12-----------------------------------|
A|------------9-10-11-12----------------------------------------------|
E|-9-10-11-12---------------------------------------------------------|
   d u  d  u  d u  d  u  d u  d  u   d u  d  u  d u  d  u  d u  d  u


This is a A Major Pentatonic scale. Use all four fingers to fret teh notes. 
Make sure all the notes are clear.
e|-------------------2-5-2-----------------------|
B|---------------2-5-------5-2-------------------|
G|-----------2-4---------------4-2---------------|
D|-------2-4-----------------------4-2-----------|
A|---2-4-------------------------------4-2-------|
E|-5---------------------------------------5-2-5-|
   d u d u d u d u d u d u d u d u d u d u d u d


This is an A Minor Pentatonic scale. Like before, use all four fingers to fret the notes.
Make sure each note is clear.
e|---------------------5-8-5---------------------|
B|-----------------5-8-------8-5-----------------|
G|-------------5-7---------------7-5-------------|
D|---------5-7-----------------------7-5---------|
A|-----5-7-------------------------------7-5-----|
E|-5-8---------------------------------------8-5-|
   d u d u d u d u d u d u d u d u d u d u d u d


String Skipping Exercises

Make sure you make each note sound clear. This is the intro to Deep Purple's Dark Night.
e|----------------------------------------------|
B|----------------------------------------------|
G|----------------------------------------------|
D|---5-------------5----7--5---------------5----|
A|-7---7--5---5--7---7-------7-----5--7-------7-|
E|----------7-----------------------------------|
   d u d  u d u  d u d  u  d u     d  u    d  u


A little bit more of a complex riff. From the Led Zeppelin song, Black Dog. It uses a
hammer-on and pull-off and a power chord at the end. Make sure each note rings clearly. 
                                                           A5
e|-----------------------------------------------------------|
B|--------------------5--------------------------------------|
G|------------5-----7----5h7p5------5----------------------2-|
D|---5-6-7------7---------------7-7---7--5-7-7-----5-------2-|
A|-7-------7-----------------------------------5-7---------0-|
E|-----------------------------------------------------8-----|
   d u d u d  u d   d u  d      d u d u  d u d u d u   d   d

Ad blocker interference detected!


Wikia is a free-to-use site that makes money from advertising. We have a modified experience for viewers using ad blockers

Wikia is not accessible if you’ve made further modifications. Remove the custom ad blocker rule(s) and the page will load as expected.