Real Guitar Adventure for Grownups

How to Strum a Guitar With Your Fingers

in Fingerstyle Guitar | 0 comments

Strumming with your fingers can be a valuable technique. Using your fingers gives you more flexibility to get different sounds.  There’s a wide variety of sounds you can get depending on whether you’re hitting with the fleshy part of your fingers, your thumb or your nail.


In this lesson you’ll learn the most common techniques that you can integrate into your playing right away.


At the end I’ll show you some advanced techniques that you may want to try out to extend your finger strumming pallet even farther.


Most Used Finger Strumming Techniques


Strum #1:  Thumb Only

  • Use thumb without nail up and down.

  • Folk method; soft sound; even sound 

Strum #2:  Fingers Only

  • Strum down with nail, Up with inside fleshy part of the fingers.

Strum #3:  Thumb and fingers - Version 1

  • Strum down using nails of fingers. Strum up using the nail of the thumb.

Strum #4:  Thumb and fingers - Version 2

  • Strum down using nails of fingers. Strum up using the flesh of the thumb.

Basic technique


  • Keep movements small

  • Combination of arm AND wrist twisting (stay relaxed)

Bonus: More Advanced Finger Strumming Techniques


  • Mute strum

  • Bass Strum technique

  • Rasgueado - Spanish sound

  • Rumba Flamenco Strum

I’ve created the entire lesson on the Rumba Flamenco Strum. If this is something you’d like to learn more about check this out:

Rumba Flamenco Guitar Strumming

Part 1: https://youtu.be/YwjeoyQydmU

Part 2: https://youtu.be/GFIyxUvOt7o


What’s your experience like strumming the guitar with your fingers? Leave a comment below and let me know.


Tomas Michaud

Author - Tomas Michaud at Real Guitar Success
Tomas Michaud is an American born guitarist and music educator with a French Canadian heritage. He first developed the Starland Guitar System in 1982 when his 9 year old daughter asked him to teach her guitar. Since then he’s founded the Starland School of Music in the SF Bay Area, and RealguitarSuccess.com.

When he's not making guitar instruction videos or creating more music to record (currently 7 CDs including Beauty and Fire) he's riding his bike along the beach with his dog Marco Polo or traveling to interesting places with his lovely wife Pui.
Tomas Michaud

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