Follow my proven path for building & growing your guitar skills

Good guitar technique is important to achieving solid tone and attack that allows you to increase your picking speed and accuracy. A good grip on the pick will give you more control and precision in your playing, leading to a better overall sound. Here are a few tips on how to hold a guitar pick correctly.

First, position your wrist so it is mostly horizontal to the strings so that you can rest the pick on the inside of your right index finger over the first knuckle. Then place your thumb on top of the pick holding securely between your thumb and index finger. Holding the pick in this way allows for the proper wrist and pick angle to the strings.

Often, beginners will hold the pick between the pad of the index and thumb. I’m not a fan of this pick technique because it doesn’t allow for the proper wrist angle.


Second, keep your grip relaxed. You want to hold the pick firmly but not too tightly, as this can cause tension and fatigue in your hand and arm when playing at faster tempos. A relaxed grip will allow you to play more smoothly and with greater control. Only about a third of the length of the pick should extend out to touch the strings. The pick should never pass through the strings and touch the wood of the body of the guitar. This will help you pick lightly and smoothly.

Proper grip and wrist angle.

Doc Watson

Tony Rice

You may want to experiment with different grip styles. Some players prefer the floating method and some like to anchor one or two fingers on the pick guard. You may also find that you prefer to hold the pick at a different angle. Experiment with different grip styles until you find the one that works best for you.

Experiment with different pick thicknesses and materials. There are a wide variety of guitar picks available, each with its own unique feel and sound. Some players prefer a thicker pick for a more aggressive sound, while others prefer a thinner pick for a more delicate sound.

Holding a guitar pick correctly is essential to playing the guitar well. By following these tips, you will have an effective starting point that will allow you to build your technique while having better control and precision in your playing.