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Easy Exercises to Build Fretting Hand Flexibility

One of the most crucial areas to develop for the fretting hand is how far each finger can stretch on the fretboard.

This along with finger independence and dexterity will form a team for your fingers to tackle the most difficult licks and rhythm guitar parts.

Developing the stretching ability of your fingers sounds very easy, but a word of caution, like any other body part, if stretched too far it can hurt.


If you do it consistently it will keep improving over a period of time.

So follow the below exercise to build Fretting hand stretching ability.

Exercise 1: Two Finger Stretch away from the Guitar

This one is the easiest to do and it doesn’t require the Guitar. You can do it as many times as you want, but the best time to do this will be right after playing or practicing.

So you use the thumb and the Index finger of your picking hand and use them to stretch the fingers from your Fretting hand.

Finger Stretch without Guitar

Hold every stretch for around 15 seconds in the beginning and keep increasing the duration of the stretch gradually. Relax your fingers after performing the stretch, this is crucial.

The best part about these exercises is that you can perform them from anywhere, any number of times during the day.

You don’t need to waste any valuable practice time on this, however I do recommend doing these after your practice sessions.

With any of these static stretches, you want to take your fingers to about 80 to 90 % of the stretch that you are capable of, and not to a point where it starts hurting.

You’ll see a big change in the flexibility of your fingers after a few weeks of performing these exercises consistently.

 Exercise 2: Two FInger Stretch on Guitar

Be careful to stay within your Fretting hand limits with the Stretches and allow your hand some time to develop the stretching ability. Do it as slow as possible.

Playing good sounding notes is not the goal here, instead you should focus on training your fingers to stretch farther every week.

Do not overkill your fingers in trying to stretch beyond what you can do comfortably, you don’t want to feel any pain. Stay patient with this, and you’ll see your stretches improving in very short period of time.

Place one finger stationery on the Fretboard and the adjacent finger starts playing the higher frets, as far as it can play.

Then try the same with other fingers, and finally switch the stationery finger and repeat the exercise.

Start on higher frets and slowly transition to lower frets for a bigger challenge.

How to follow the exercises?

  1. Do the stretching after your playing or practice session.
  2. Practice in short bursts at slow speeds and gradually try to increase the stretches.
  3. Do it on higher frets first, and slowly start making your way towards the first fret.
  4. Do not continue playing if you feel any kind of pain or discomfort, save it for next practice session.
  5. Experiment and come up with more such stretching exercises and build upon the good work


Playing the exercises accurately or making the guitar sound good is not your goal here. It’s something bigger than that, to train your fingers to stretch further every single day. Be patient with this and keep doing it as much as required, for as long as possible.

About The Author:

Dhanesh Sarangadharan is a certified guitar teacher from Pune,Maharashtra India, who is passionate about coaching students to progress faster on Guitar.

He’s also specialized in coaching kids to learn Guitar faster while having lots of fun through the learning process.

If you live in Pune, Maharashtra, and are looking for the best guitar learning for your kids that will develop them into a well rounded musician, then visit and book your free trial session today.