Friday, May 29, 2015 by Matt Cosgrove | Technique
Be sure to check out Creeping Exercise part 1 to get the details of the left hand movements.
Now, let’s look at the structure of the exercise. Lightly touch all four fingers to the first string. Apply the above steps to the first finger. On steps 3 – 4 move the first finger from the first string to the second string. Repeat the steps for the 2nd finger, then 3rd, and then the 4th finger. Once all the fingers are on the 2nd string. Repeat the above steps until all the fingers are on the third string, then to the 4th string, 5th string etc.. Once you get to the 6th string, repeat all the above steps moving back to the 1st string. The only difference is that when you move from the 6th string to the first string you should lead with the 4th finger.
Moving from the 1st string to the 6th string and back to the 1st string is one repetition of the exercise. Practice the steps until you are comfortable doing them with the metronome at mm 80 giving two clicks to each step. If you do the exercise accurately and are comfortable at mm 80, go to mm 82 and do it again. Keep going until your metronome reaches the top speed. If the top speed of your metronome is mm 240, decrease the speed to mm 120 and give only one click to every step and continue up to 240 again.
Remember, the object of this exercise is to get it as fast as you can WITH accuracy and ease of motion. Once, you’ve gone to mm 240 giving one click to every step, decrease the speed to mm 120 and do two steps with every click. If these instructions are followed in every detail, it will greatly increase the efficiency and control of your left hand. This is the “light touch” system. It will increase your scale speed and chord changes.
These same steps can also be applied to chord changes. Try applying the above steps moving from a particular chord to another. My students in the past have found it helpful when they experience difficulty when moving between certain chords. Happy left hand training.