Stay with downstrums or push for strumming pattern?

Hi I am Sue from Chicago.
First and foremost the Justin Guitar modules are excellent.
I am in module 5, I guess like all of us really want to play a song. I am trying to determine if I should just stick with down strums or push for the strumming patter?
What is the better way to practice and learn?
I practice the muted strings for the strumming patters daily, at least 10 minutes and working on distracting.
I spend a hour per day practicing and have made good practice with my OMC.

I am getting frustrated with myself LOL because switching chords and strumming patterns seems really hard right now. Am I trying to go to fast, am I a slow learner and need to stay with down strums only? Or just forge on until I get the strumming down.
Hey everyone appreciate what you have learned. Thank you :slight_smile:


The only way it will get less hard is to practice it! It sounds like you’ve been practicing both components separately (chord changes and strumming), so I think it’s reasonable to try combining them by playing along to songs with “old faithful” or another strumming pattern that you’ve worked on. Just play at a slow tempo to give yourself time to get both, then gradually speed it up as you become more proficient.

With the kind of time you put into daily practice, I would do both.

With down strums only, if you haven’t been already, you could practice to a metronome to further elevate your timing skills.

And you could separately practice your strumming patterns.

That way you would be making progress in both.

what grade/mod are you on? stick with what justin recommends at that particular time. i tried to go off the reservation last time i tried this a few years back and got totally confused and quit. this go round i’m following him to the letter he knows a hell of a lot more than me.

My approach was to practice both aspects separately.

I would do Justin’s chord change exercises until I could do them reasonably quickly and accurately without looking at my fretting hand.

I thought I’d never get strumming. The idea of keeping my hand moving and hitting the strings sometimes and missing on others was mind blowing. I practiced my strumming with muted strings, painfully slowly at first, over and over, even saying out the pattern out loud sometimes e,g down miss down up miss up down miss etc. It wasn’t until I could do a pattern without thinking (or saying it out loud) that I combined it with chord changes (and that was still hard for a while).

I’d do the exercises above, daily if possible, a few minutes is better than no minutes and keep doing your songs with down strums because that is still good rhythm practice.

It is hard but you will get there. It doesn’t happen overnight but if you can practice a few minutes daily you will start to see little improvements that hopefully will encourage you to go on. Good luck :blush:

Hello Sue and welcome to our community. :slight_smile:

You say you are progressing well with your OMC’s. How many are you up to per minute?

It’s that thing of getting your brain to multitask, so if you can have one part of the process automated (I’m thinking your chord changes here) then you can put more focus on your strumming. I say give it a try though. If you are getting frustrated with yourself you don’t want to lose the passion for playing and then end up giving up. Nothing lost, if it doesn’t work then just go back to your OMC’s and strumming until you feel a little more confident.

Remember though, start nice and slow.

Stay with downstrums, tap your foot and keep the hand moving…you will feel yourself when you’ll be ready for patterns…keep on practicing them on muted strings along with the metronome and foot tapping :blush:

Thank you everyone! This was my first time reaching out and everyone is so positive and helpful …made my day :slight_smile:
I will continue on working on me and patience LOL and practice the down strums and muted patterns.

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