How to Hold a Pick


In this short lesson, I will show you how to hold the pick. There are more ways of holding the pick, however the best way is to use the thumb and index finger of the right hand. This will give you a steady grip while still enabling the rest of the hand's muscles to relax.

Start by making a fist with the right hand. Next, put your thumb on top of your folded index finger. Place the pick, using your free hand, between thumb and index finger, pointing outwards, perpendicular to your thumb (see picture).


Make sure the end of your thumb is covering as much of the pick as possible. This will give you maximum grip together with the index finger. The point of the pick should be sticking out for about 1/4 of an inch (5-7 mm). Be careful to not squeeze the pick too hard, just hold it firm enough to prevent it from slipping away when playing.

lesson how to hold a pick 2


Now, relax all five fingers of the picking hand so the fist opens up slightly.

This is important as squeezing your hand into a fist all the time produces too much tension which makes it difficult to play. Try to avoid completely onfolding the three fingers that are not holding the pick, just leave them folded inward loosely, like the index finger.


Some guitar players use middle finger, index finger and thumb to hold the pick. As said, I do not recommend this, as using more fingers in the picking hand can produce greater tension in the hand which compromises playing ease and relaxation. The idea is to pick efficiently while leaving the picking hand as loose as possible.


The next thing you could learn is the basic picking technique known as 'alternate picking'. Good luck, take care!


lesson how to hold a pick