I always record myself playing and analyze it later. This critical observation does wonders for my playing, and it’ll do the same for you. The full lesson is here!
My strumming definitely needs improving so have been following Justin’s new course. I would definitely take up Justin recommendation to record yourself. I have done a little bit of recording when playing muted strings or simple chord changes along with metronome but mostly using a selfie on my iPad. My arm movement is a lot better so I thought I would record me play and singing one of my grade 1 songs that I can do from memory. It sounded a lot better but I was disappointed to see I had very little arm movement nearly all wrist. I think playing a song gave me more to think about and I reverted back to what I was doing before.
Recording therefore is definitely worth doing as you become aware of any mistakes and you can work on putting them right.
For the beginner stages of the beginner course, Justin talks about arm instead of wrist.
I think that having a loose and relaxed wrist is also fine.
An analogy I use is thinking in terms of two racket sports : tennis vs badminton.
In tennis, you need a strong wrist and the movement of striking the ball is mainly in the arm.
In badminton, you need a supple wrist and a flicky-loose wrist.
I tend to be more of the latter.
Maybe it’s because I’m not a muscle-guy with great strength! haha
The ‘truth’ lies between the two - but I suggest beginner start with the arm and then later build wrist movement. I feel that the arm movement helps a lot with getting into the groove and building good muscle memory! But using the wrist is fine too - especially when things get faster! J
I’ve always had very ordinary rhythm chops, both right and left hand, hence my joining this course. Arm movement instead of wrist movement has given me pick control and better repetition. I’m enjoying creating new patterns for myself, but a bit daunting at first.
And the recording quickly tells you if the rhythm you’ve created is a keeper!! Plus all the other things already mentioned, like timing, steady volume, tapping your foot, speeding up etc etc
Welcome to the community.
Thanks Michael, already been worth the entry fee. Cheers
You are right well worth it, it has improved my strumming a lot already, but still a long way to go. I look ahead and think some of the techniques in Grade 2 look interesting but have to hold my self back, get the basics right first.
Putting strumming in a separate course means you can concentrate on it as a particular thing to learn and just not mixed up in all the others you are learning.
4 posts were split to a new topic: How can I get a good quality audio-video recording of my playing (for the SOS Strumming course)?
I try to record myself every week or two to get an assessment of my strumming, both in the movement and the sound.
But, I’ve also found that sitting in front of a TV or computer monitor that is turned off creates a mirror where I can watch myself in real time to make sure that my hand keeps moving. Obviously recording can offer better opportunity for analysis, but the reflection offers the chance to refine things in real time and has been really useful for me.