Finger Workout User Guide

Finger Workout™ User Guide

How to Practice

So Many Exercises? Where do I Begin?

There are over 200 exercises in the Finger Workout database. Maybe that's bit overwhelming when you first approach it. So where do you start? How do you practice it?

Finger Workout™ believes in a self-paced, self-directed approach. We're not going to jump you through a standard set of hoops like robots, because no two players are alike. We're all at different stages of development. So start out by simply browsing the exercises and try a few out. Test the different techniques and skill levels and see where you fit in and what attracts you.

It is recommended that you start keeping track of what you're doing by using the tools provided on the "My Home" page in the members area (we'll cover that in a little more in depth in the next few pages).

When you start out, follow these basic guidelines. You'll see the below words repeated a LOT throughout the exercise comments. That's because they are so vital, and at the very core of getting results from all of this. When you exercise, make sure of the following.

  1. You are playing each note cleanly and individually.
  2. You are using a metronome and sticking to the exact set tempo.
  3. You are not barring, or resting your first finger along the bottom fret of the pattern (unless otherwise indicated).
  4. You are 100% relaxed and in control of what you're doing. The secret of that is to take it slow, stay there for a while. (speed doesn't happen overnight)

A little discipline and attention to detail is necessary, if you want to approach this the right way and get the best results most quickly.

Looping and repetition

Almost every single exercise in the database is designed so that it's easy to play the pattern in a loop keeping time with your metronome. In other words, when you get to the end of a pattern, you'll usually wind up back where you started. This makes it easy to repeat the pattern in a loop without losing your timing. Simple repetition is what is going to develop your skills. so for best results, this is how you want to approach these exercises. Therefore, I've tried to make each exercise lend itself to this approach and make it easy to loop without breaking stride.

Yes, there are some patterns that don't fit this mold. (we have to mix things up a little bit after all). In those cases, It's up to you to practice the exercise slowly enough to be able to get back to the beginning for the next rep without falling behind your tempo.

10 - 20 Minutes a Day

I don't recommend that you over-do it when using these exercises. Make them part of your daily practice regiment, but only a part of it. I feel that 10-20 minutes a day is ideal, preferably concentrating on just one or two exercises during that time. You're better off exercising 20 minutes a day as opposed to spending hours upon hours laboring through many exercises in one sitting. You can make quick strides by spreading it out a little bit each day, in fact that's probably more effective than trying to do too much at once. A workout is a workout - meaning it starts and then it ends - until the next workout. Keep that in mind.

Due to the abundance of exercises available in the database, it's easy to lose track from one day to the next. Therefore I encourage you to keep notes in your journal, add exercises to your favorites so you can return to them easily, and track your progress to generally stay organized. (covered more on the next page). Again, these tools are available at your fingertips, in the "My Home" section of the members area.

Now then, there is no law that says you need to be so organized. The tools are there. If you want to use them then use them. But if you're the type who doesn't like such a rigid approach, simply pick a new exercise each day and work on it. Just remember to stay disciplined and consistent in your approach - that's the key. As long as you do that, you'll start to notice improvements relatively quickly. For example, you may begin to notice that a difficult solo doesn't seem quite as hard as it used to be. That's how it begins... and it only gets better from there!

What is a Good Tempo?

Only you know the answer to that. Try one and see how you do. Can you keep up with the exercise at that tempo? If not, stop and slow it down. You MUST be able to play the exercises correctly, precisely, and fully relaxed at a certain tempo - I don't care if it's one beat per minute. Start slowly, and do NOT dial up the tempo until you've got it nailed and you're ready to push yourself further. When you're ready to raise the BPM, that means you're developing and achieving results! But be honest with yourself, don't force it. It will come.

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