Proper way to hit or pluck a string

Hi: I’ve got a Strat with a maple fretboard. When I play this guitar I always seem to hit the pickguard with every string played. I have the feeling my technique is wrong. Don’t know if I’m digging down when I play a string or what the problem is and I can’t seem to find information about the proper way to play a string. I have to learn to play across a string and not down and up?

The constant click click click of the pick hitting the pickguard is irritating

best to post a video

1 Like

While I can’t show ya. I’m sure there’s a JG lesson about this.

While I’m learning too, I find there are many ways to use the pick attack.
From my memory of watching that lession.

Generally, down strum, pick top tilted twd. floor. Up strum, top of pick angled twd. ceiling. Pick at 45% to the strings. Not much pick protruding from your fingers.

Of course, the harder you pluck the sting, the louder it is. So ya can hit the sting soft for quiet, harder for loud. Dynamics within a song, decrescendo, crescendo.

That’s what I’m shooting for when I play anyways.
When I think about it. I don’t think I hit the pick guard to much, unless I’m really getting down to some R&R.

Harry, you mention hitting the pick guard. I can think of two possible causes.

One, you may have the guitar angled so you can see the neck and your fingers. Strumming parallel to your body as is normal could cause that at the bottom of your strum.

Two, your strumming is not parallel to your body and guitar body.

So check that and maybe you’ll find that is the issue.

I agree with Rob, a video will be the quickest way to help. However, do you mean when you strum or picking individual strings? If it’s picking individual strings and you hit the pickguard all the time, then that seems odd - are you sure it’s the pickguard and not the middle pickup? Hitting the middle pickup on a strat is not entirely unheard of - if you look at photos of Richie Blackmore playing a strat you will normally see his middle pickup screwed right down to the pickguard for this exact reason.

Agree with DP

I would say this is highly likely to be the cause, if you have not been playing/learning long.