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Guide to Playing Guitar with Your Left Hand

Are you left-handed and wondering if playing the guitar is possible for you? Don’t fret you are not alone! Famous guitarists such as Jimi Hendrix, Kurt Cobain, and Joe Perry of Aerosmith are all leftists. Being naturally left-handed, it may make sense to play the guitar with your left-hand fingers on the fretboard. However, many of these famous guitarists did learn to play the guitar with their right hand.

Which Guitar to Use?

The drive to want to play the guitar may create a new way of playing if you are left-handed. You can simply flip the right hand to the other side to start playing with your left hand, except the strings will be upside down.

But that didn’t stop many prolific guitarists who got themselves right-handed guitars and restrung the strings. This way you can use the guitar normally. Flipping the guitar or restringing it may seem like the easier option for left-handed guitarists, even though it may be troublesome.

That is because once you’ve flipped a right-handed guitar, things like the switches, input socket, scratch guards, and tremolo arm will all be in the wrong place. The easier way would be to buy a left-handed guitar.

Playing with a Left-Handed Guitar

Once you have decided to buy yourself a left-handed guitar, the next thing is to learn to master the chords and fretboard technique. Whichever hand is dominant for you, you will find that it is your picking hand that ends up becoming the authority of your guitar playing. As a lefty, your dominant hand (left hand), will be what lends colour and depth to your guitar style as opposed to your right hand on the fretboard.

Holding a left-handed guitar correctly is the same for a right-handed guitarist. The way to hold the left-handed guitar correctly is to relax your shoulders, arms, neck, and fingers. Stay loose while maintaining a good posture is the secret to playing well.

The way to hold the neck of the guitar is to grip it lightly with your right hand. Keep your wrist loose and free from tension so that your fingers can easily navigate up and down the fretboard. Remember to relax your left hand while strumming.

Advantages of Left-Handed Guitar

If you decided to learn to play a right-handed guitar as a lefty, you will have the challenge of mentally inverting chord charts and tabs in order to place your fingers on the correct frets. Using a left-handed guitar eliminates all these inconveniences. Chord charts, tabs, and tips are readily available for a left-handed guitar player.

Having a left-handed guitar level the playing field for you and makes your guitar learning journey so much easier making it comparable to beginner right-handed guitarists.

Learning to play the guitar for left-handed guitarists is the same as for those who are right-handed. Check out Ritmo Music’s guitar programme and get a free trial to kick-start your guitar journey.

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