Left Hand Endurance Building (Guitar Lesson)

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Allen Van Wert

Left Hand Endurance Building

Allen shows an amazing muscle building exercise that really works out the left hand!

Taught by Allen Van Wert in Speed And Technique seriesLength: 9:32Difficulty: 1.5 of 5

Video Subtitles / Captions

Supplemental Learning Material


Member Comments about this Lesson

Discussions with our instructors are just one of the many benefits of becoming a member of JamPlay.

JakejamJakejam replied on November 2nd, 2017

Just one thing I noticed as a rookie...I don't know if showing the exercises at this lightning speed is intentional to see how far we all could get with the constant practice. To me this produces a scary effect like...no, I can't make it even if I record myself at 1/10 of your speed and then playback 10 times faster. But I am in my 50ties and that's probably what refrains me to still think to become the new Yngwie. Anyhow, I won't give up easily.

Bradley.ConwayBradley.Conway replied on November 2nd, 2017

Hello Jakejam! Yeah it can be really hard to keep up with the speed of some of the lessons for sure. Have you tried using the speed controls located directly below the video player? You can use the up and down arrows located directly to the right of the "100%" to slow down or speed up a lesson. The video player will actually maintain the correct pitch for the audio up to 50% slower, beyond that point the audio will simply mute, but your lesson will still playback at the slower speed. I hope this helps! HAPPY JAMMING!!

michael.nationjrmichael.nationjr replied on January 28th, 2017

great excerise. I can do it. Its really tuff for my pinky. So I wanna take more time working building my strength on my pinky. Now my question would be do you leave your 1st finger down are slightly above why doing your pinky? When I do it it is little easier for me to put index down but I find down it faster r without thinking are looking my 1st 2nd find is flying in air way out there. What would be proper way?

chemanuechemanue replied on January 14th, 2017

Hard work, dude. Will follow your advice see how it goes. I am sure will be hepful for my playing, though not too funny, lol!!!

EhoardEhoard replied on November 23rd, 2016

These exercises along with the last lessons exercises have really helped my playing and allowed me to pickup extra speed in my overall playing. Great Lessons !!!!

bbromley64@googlemail.com[email protected] replied on April 6th, 2016

only just started on the jam play website, but allready you've helped my. great tutor

AlienDanAlienDan replied on November 18th, 2015

Still doing this every day. 2nd and 3rd fingers - I could go all day now. 3rd/4th - usually go all 6 strings no problem, but sometimes still fade a little toward the end. 4th/5th - 4-5 strings, then starts to burn a little, but I usually make it ok. My leads are getting FAR more accurate! I should have done this when I was 16!

manitoulinguymanitoulinguy replied on September 19th, 2015

Love your teaching. very clear. Thanks!

AlienDanAlienDan replied on September 1st, 2015

I started this drill in February. Since then: major improvement! For the first couple months I did this about 4-5 times per week. Beginning July 1 I've done it every single day, and I intend to continue that. I can now do 2nd and 3rd fingers no problem, even two passes - no problem. 3rd and 4th still somewhat difficult, but I can get through them fine. 4th and 5th still burn pretty good, but I can get through 5 strings before strength starts to fade. My goal is for 4th and 5th fingers to build the same strength and power (and sound just as good) as the 2nd for hammering and pull-offs. I expect it to take a year or so, because I need to actually grow muscle mass. But in the meantime, my accuracy has improved incredibly! I'm nailing some fast leads I've been playing for years and struggled with accuracy. This is the only drill I make sure I do every day, and it works!

mapinazmapinaz replied on August 15th, 2015

I have been using Dunlop nylon 1.0 mm picks. I purchased some V-Picks the other day and I am amazed at the difference they make in attack and control. What string gauges do you use? I use D'Adario Light Guage ( I think ) .010 - .046.

dalvinrdalvinr replied on May 5th, 2015

I'm having a terrible time doing pull-offs without picking the strings. I can barely get any sound beyond the third string. I'm using 10 strings. Would 9 strings be easier?

AlienDanAlienDan replied on February 22nd, 2015

First time I tried it - OWWW! It hurts so good! I couldn't get through 2 strings with 2nd and 3rd fingers! I actually did slightly better with 3rd and 4th fingers. I've been playing 42 years and never seen anything like this! I'll be doing these every time I pick up my axe.

batscat1batscat1 replied on December 6th, 2014

I am definitely noticing more speed and accuracy once I put the isolated movements together. Makes practicing scales much more fun.

donnydarkodonnydarko replied on November 7th, 2014

your lessons are excellent "wall" busters.

lmorselmorse replied on March 30th, 2014

Hi Allen, I seem to have an issue with my pinky when stretching over to the 6th and 5th strings, the middle knuckle collapses so that the pinky is straight from the base knuckle through to the top knuckle (with the top knuckle bent), so that if you look at the pinky side on it looks like an 'L' shape. It means that my pull-offs become quite messy and weak. Nothing I have tried seems to help keep that middle knuckle bent when stretching. Can you suggest anything?

allen.vanwertallen.vanwert replied on June 25th, 2014

I have the same sort of issue with those and they are not easy. You could try to use the outside edge of the finger and not the flat/fat part

thebraverygirlthebraverygirl replied on March 17th, 2014

great exercise, definitely adding this to my warm up - really work out the hand!

tommytjamstommytjams replied on March 11th, 2014

wow this is a BITCH...great excercise though...guess that what happens when ya pick up a guitar at age 46 lol...oh well

cccattorneycccattorney replied on February 16th, 2014


allen.vanwertallen.vanwert replied on June 25th, 2014


cccattorneycccattorney replied on January 6th, 2014


cccattorneycccattorney replied on December 22nd, 2013


kevinjykevinjy replied on December 9th, 2013

This is intense! I wake up in the morning and this is now the first exercise I do..Would you recommend doing it more than once a day?

allen.vanwertallen.vanwert replied on June 25th, 2014

I used to do everything pretty much 3 or 4 times a day but it is not required

egosmackeregosmacker replied on November 18th, 2013

Great lesson Allen! I will have Popeye left arm in due time as well.

allen.vanwertallen.vanwert replied on November 22nd, 2013


cccattorneycccattorney replied on November 10th, 2013


allen.vanwertallen.vanwert replied on November 22nd, 2013

Nice! How is the progress?

cccattorneycccattorney replied on October 20th, 2013


cccattorneycccattorney replied on October 5th, 2013

doing it everyday. Love it

cccattorneycccattorney replied on October 2nd, 2013

Really Enjoy your teaching, Allen. Thank you. I am still doing these exercises everyday. I don't miss a single day.

allen.vanwertallen.vanwert replied on November 22nd, 2013

That is very good! Make sure to take breaks if it hurts in a bad way

Bman33Bman33 replied on September 30th, 2013

Allen, I am a self taught guitar player of about 30 years and these exercises are making me feel like a beginner. Frickin good stuff man. This is exactly what i was hoping to find and why i joined jamplay. Really enjoying your teaching and also your live lessons. Thanks again man!!!

allen.vanwertallen.vanwert replied on November 22nd, 2013

You are very welcome and it makes me happy to help!

domjamdomjam replied on September 25th, 2013

Great series Allen. You are a born teacher (although I'm sure you can rock out on stage too!!). These are tough drills, but great stuff. Thanks and keep it coming. So far you are the teacher I have stuck with the longest.

cccattorneycccattorney replied on September 22nd, 2013

Great stuff. I still do it everyday. Today started it at 1:51pm. I like this a lot

cccattorneycccattorney replied on August 26th, 2013

Still doing this everyday. Thanks Allen for a great exercise.

jasonaimzzjasonaimzz replied on August 12th, 2013

I came to jamplay looking for lessons like the ones in this series. I've been playing for about 5 years and I'm purely self taught. Now that my playing is getting quite serious I knew i needed to fine tune my technical skills to be competitive in the music scene here in Santa Cruz, and your lessons are helping me accomplish that. Thanks a ton allen !

allen.vanwertallen.vanwert replied on November 22nd, 2013

You are quite welcome!

diddyt88diddyt88 replied on November 23rd, 2013

Whendoing my middle finger and ring finger I can't seem to keep my pointer finger flat. And when I do the ring finger and pinkey my middle finger curls up if that makes sense. Its driving me crazy!

cccattorneycccattorney replied on June 21st, 2013

Allen, thank you so much. These are fantastic. I am starting to do them everyday, and I am getting great benefit from them. Thanks so much.

allen.vanwertallen.vanwert replied on November 22nd, 2013

You are welcome!

guerntarguerntar replied on June 10th, 2013

Just started on this one, I could barely get through the first two strings using my 3rd finger and pinky... Ouch! And I've been playing guitar for over 17 years, now I realise how my weak pinky has hindered my playing Will post after a few weeks of this to let you know how it has improved

allen.vanwertallen.vanwert replied on November 22nd, 2013

How is the progress?

cccattorneycccattorney replied on April 13th, 2013

Are you sure that you cannot get injured doing these ?

allen.vanwertallen.vanwert replied on November 22nd, 2013

I haven't

kennekenne replied on February 28th, 2013

I hope your getting your jollies, You sadistic Bastard. Thanks Allen, ... I guess.

allen.vanwertallen.vanwert replied on November 22nd, 2013


danludwigdanludwig replied on January 19th, 2013

Watching this, I expected you to go through the other 3 combinations, 1-3, 1-4, and 2-4. Since it's an endurance exercise, is that really not necessary? Doing it faster is more important than adding different finger combinations?

allen.vanwertallen.vanwert replied on January 21st, 2013

You could and I have thought about adding those as well. However, when we start doing the all types of picking exercise you perform every combination along with picking so I only had three of these to save practice time. Feel free to include though though. It may be a good thing.

jdcengeljdcengel replied on November 24th, 2012

How would you adapt this exercise for an acoustic guitar?

allen.vanwertallen.vanwert replied on January 9th, 2013

Simply do it on an acoustic.

mcarrigan1958mcarrigan1958 replied on November 3rd, 2012

Your workout lessons are killing me! LOL But each day I'm a little stronger and faster. Thanks for the workout. I enjoy your chat sessions as well!

allen.vanwertallen.vanwert replied on January 9th, 2013

Keep it up!

handsfromasshandsfromass replied on October 30th, 2012

3rd finger and pinky ...very tough

allen.vanwertallen.vanwert replied on January 9th, 2013


10ferrets10ferrets replied on October 19th, 2012

Wow, Allen- jeez, this lesson has helped me so much. we are very lucky to have been able to get a great lesson from a great teacher. Thanks!

allen.vanwertallen.vanwert replied on January 9th, 2013

You are very wecome!

buckeyestevebuckeyesteve replied on October 10th, 2012

I appreciate you showing me just how out of shape my hands are! These are great exercises - thanks.

allen.vanwertallen.vanwert replied on January 9th, 2013

You are quite welcome. Keep at it and magic happens lol

metalhead003metalhead003 replied on September 20th, 2012

You were right Allen this drill sucks, but it made me better.

allen.vanwertallen.vanwert replied on January 9th, 2013

that is the magic!

flightflight replied on June 4th, 2012

Hi Allen! Really nice exercise. I approached to the part of 1st string-ring finger. Should I continue practice with this little(almost nothing) I can do with my pinky?

allen.vanwertallen.vanwert replied on January 9th, 2013

Even if it is hard.. especially if it is hard.. practice it and you will overcome.

benwatsonbenwatson replied on May 24th, 2012

A bit off topic, but I usually play acoustic fingerstyle and I'm looking for ways to improve my single-note runs. I usually use my thumb and index finger to play runs- I don't use a thumbpick. Do you have any advice for improving? Great lessons by the way, Allen, thanks.

allen.vanwertallen.vanwert replied on May 25th, 2012

Keep practicing things slowly and perfectly and only build speed when you can do it cleanly. Find which is weaker/slower between your thumb and index and practice that one until it is equal to the other.

traytontrayton replied on March 11th, 2012

This is easy on my index/middle finger but hard on my ring and pinky. Should I go fast, the same pace as my index/middle fingers max speed, or should I slow down for the ring and pinky finger?

allen.vanwertallen.vanwert replied on March 21st, 2012

Do the easier ones as triplet speed and slow the metronome down to what the tougher fingers can do.

mattsjammattsjam replied on March 3rd, 2012

hey allen would it be possible to combine this with the previous exercise using the 24 finger pattens

allen.vanwertallen.vanwert replied on March 21st, 2012

Yes, that is a good idea.. or just legato the 24 exercises.. that should work well.

smclean78smclean78 replied on December 31st, 2011

Hey Allen, I really like the way you approach these exercises and ideas. I have seen similar ones before but never put together like your have, i.e.the diagonal 4 finger combo's. I have only been really focusing and been diligent with them for a few days now but they are really helping. You made a comment about how you can have problems in other areas of your playing that could have been corrected if you'd spend time on these drills...so true! I like the way the drills focus both across strings and up and down one string, gets you thinking linearly (if that's a word). Have you got any suggestions for adding some exercises to my practice time that would help to apply scales and patterns musically, its one thing to be able to do drills well but the ultimate goal is to sound great over music...thanks

gvanausdlegvanausdle replied on October 30th, 2011

I never have expected to play fast licks but I have to say doing these techniques makes sense and is helping even though I am a singer songwriter player. Thx

allen.vanwertallen.vanwert replied on October 31st, 2011

You are quite welcome!

sidksidk replied on October 27th, 2011

Hi. A little of the topic but what type of equipment are you using in this lesson. I'm curious because I don't hear any of the notes ringing on and on or any feedback. How do you get this without cranking up the gain? Or am I missing something here? It sounds very very clean. Which is good. I just don't know how to get this sound. I hope this makes sense to you. Its hard to explain these things sometimes without the listener getting confused. When I crank my gain up to get better sustain when doing hammer ons and pull offs its hard not to get a lot of string noise and its not a very clean/note ending sound. Thank you.

allen.vanwertallen.vanwert replied on October 28th, 2011

They had a mark V amp there I plugged into and played. I think the being clean may come from technique mostly.

goobstergoobster replied on October 24th, 2011

So, If I understand you correctly, I can go through the exercise on one day doing hammer ons and pulloffs on the next day. I guess what I was doing was called trills. I was hammering on and pulling off in rapid succession when doing the exercise.

goobstergoobster replied on October 23rd, 2011

I did this differently when I first did it. Instead of just hammering on I hammered on and pulled off each string. My forearm muscles were really feeling it. Is that even better for building the muscles or should I just stick with hammer ons?

allen.vanwertallen.vanwert replied on October 24th, 2011

I usually do both and alternate each practice.

allen.vanwertallen.vanwert replied on October 24th, 2011

Oh wait, I read it wrong. I am not sure what you mean exactly..?

Tyrone ShoelacesTyrone Shoelaces replied on October 18th, 2011


Mr MetalheadMr Metalhead replied on October 17th, 2011

Great stuff Allen. I am really enjoying your lesson series

allen.vanwertallen.vanwert replied on October 18th, 2011

Thank you. I have a bunch more on the way.

mikeissimomikeissimo replied on October 7th, 2011

Allen, I've found my guitar to start getting a softer feel after about 1-week of these great excersizes. Great job.

allen.vanwertallen.vanwert replied on October 13th, 2011

You got it! It will be easier to play as you strengthen.

edgreer2007edgreer2007 replied on October 13th, 2011

Great exercises Allen! Definitely helped with my sloppy play as a beginner.

allen.vanwertallen.vanwert replied on October 13th, 2011

Keep at it slowly and cleanly and it will pay off big time later on.

shredersonsshredersons replied on October 11th, 2011

Not only has this exercise improved my guitar playing...It has greatly improved my love life..j/k great lesson Allen.. keep 'em commin'

allen.vanwertallen.vanwert replied on October 13th, 2011

HAHAHA My girlfriend agrees with this comment and of course ancillary benefits will occur. Keep up the good work!

pflint99pflint99 replied on October 12th, 2011

started doing these exercises, but I've reversed the sequence, I star with my pinky.This stems from my weight training ,when you want to improve your weak bits, start them when you are at you are at your strongest. I've also started soaking my hand in ice water after a long session and find that this does aid recovery.

allen.vanwertallen.vanwert replied on October 13th, 2011

I was informed in weight training to weaken the stronger parts first to ensure the weak ones have to do their own work so there is no cheating. Like working the major muscles before the smaller ones. Not sure about the ice water but it is a cool idea. I usually need a shower after anyway from all of the sweat of a good practice session lol.

gabe dgabe d replied on October 8th, 2011

Massaging my hand between each set seems to help the lactic acid build up thing... a tip I learned from Wallimann. pretty cool. Love this workout! Thanks so much

digitaloxdigitalox replied on October 4th, 2011


brutus88brutus88 replied on October 4th, 2011

probably the best lessons on jamplay, thanks a lot Allen ! Keep posting more videos, i love them !

brutus88brutus88 replied on October 4th, 2011

oh and by the way, this exercise made me realize how weak my pinky is :-( I will have to work on that !

dennis.hodgesdennis.hodges replied on October 1st, 2011

just wanted to point out that these are great for a right hand finger workout as well (for anyone interested in multi-finger tapping)!

allen.vanwertallen.vanwert replied on October 2nd, 2011

Very good point. Whenever people ask me how to advance tapping or work it out. I usually just give them left handed things but have them tap it lol. This would be a great introduction to it for sure! Thanks

wayne66wayne66 replied on September 30th, 2011

Hey Allan. Where do you place your thumb when you're doing these? Second part to that question is does it move up or down in relation to which string you're fretting? Nice job on that guitar btw

allen.vanwertallen.vanwert replied on October 1st, 2011

I usually keep my thumb centered for the most part or even over the back of the neck when not really needed much. When playing the thinner strings I tend to move the thumb down with the fingers to make the connection stronger. My thumb is also almost always further down the fretboard than the fingers instead of right behind them.

krazyfngazkrazyfngaz replied on September 29th, 2011

I like this, but are we sure we're not at risk for tendonitis or carpel tunnel?

allen.vanwertallen.vanwert replied on September 29th, 2011

I have never had a problem in my fretting hand in years of playing and doing these sorts of things personally. Also, if you consider the time we spend on a computer typing compared to this exercises you may realize we type more and no carpal tunnel etc

krazyfngazkrazyfngaz replied on September 29th, 2011

a valid point sir....i'm very much enjoying this series so far.

wayne66wayne66 replied on September 30th, 2011

I would advise looking into various finger and wrist stretching exercises that you perform after playing for a while. There are some good ones shown on this site. And there are many people who've had carpal tunnel from typing on a computer so that's not really relavent.

allen.vanwertallen.vanwert replied on October 1st, 2011

Carpal tunnel syndrome is often the result of a combination of factors that increase pressure on the median nerve and tendons in the carpal tunnel, rather than a problem with the nerve itself. Most likely the disorder is due to a congenital predisposition - the carpal tunnel is simply smaller in some people than in others. Other contributing factors include trauma or injury to the wrist that cause swelling, such as sprain or fracture; overactivity of the pituitary gland; hypothyroidism; rheumatoid arthritis; mechanical problems in the wrist joint; work stress; repeated use of vibrating hand tools; fluid retention during pregnancy or menopause; or the development of a cyst or tumor in the canal. Carpal tunnel syndrome is also associated with pregnancy and diseases such as diabetes, thyroid disease, or rheumatoid arthritis. In some cases no cause can be identified. There is little clinical data to prove whether repetitive and forceful movements of the hand and wrist during work or leisure activities can cause carpal tunnel syndrome. Repeated motions performed in the course of normal work or other daily activities can result in repetitive motion disorders such as bursitis and tendonitis. Writer's cramp - a condition in which a lack of fine motor skill coordination and ache and pressure in the fingers, wrist, or forearm is brought on by repetitive activity - is not a symptom of carpal tunnel syndrome. Women are three times more likely than men to develop carpal tunnel syndrome, perhaps because the carpal tunnel itself may be smaller in women than in men. The dominant hand is usually affected first and produces the most severe pain. Persons with diabetes or other metabolic disorders that directly affect the body's nerves and make them more susceptible to compression are also at high risk. Carpal tunnel syndrome usually occurs only in adults. The risk of developing carpal tunnel syndrome is not confined to people in a single industry or job, but is especially common in those performing assembly line work - manufacturing, sewing, finishing, cleaning, and meat, poultry, or fish packing. In fact, carpal tunnel syndrome is three times more common among assemblers than among data-entry personnel. A 2001 study by the Mayo Clinic found heavy computer use (up to 7 hours a day) did not increase a person's risk of developing carpal tunnel syndrome.

goobstergoobster replied on September 30th, 2011

I have added this to my daily practice routine. Thanks!

jasperheadjasperhead replied on September 30th, 2011

Think my pinky just died!! Nice exercise as all yours are cant wait for more

thesnowdogthesnowdog replied on September 29th, 2011

What guitar are you playing here Allen?

allen.vanwertallen.vanwert replied on September 30th, 2011

My homemade one

clarke1966clarke1966 replied on September 29th, 2011

Geez, my pinky is useless! Great lesson Allen, nice to have a method to increase finger strength.

gorbaggorbag replied on September 29th, 2011

hah yes that was an embarassingly slow exercise for my pinky. We'll see what a week or two of this exercise can do

Tyrone ShoelacesTyrone Shoelaces replied on September 29th, 2011

FMR! I can't even get the pinky to make a sound on the high E!

Funk MasterFunk Master replied on September 29th, 2011

Feeling the burn! Love it Allen. Thanks!

jj90jj90 replied on September 29th, 2011

Great exercises Allen! Really love this series next to your song lessons :-) Thanks!

sirstratsirstrat replied on September 29th, 2011

Nice burn let's see what 15 min a day will do..

JarjorJarjor replied on September 29th, 2011

great lesson Allen, no pain no gain you must burn to learn thanks bro

rhoadsfreakrhoadsfreak replied on September 29th, 2011

Brutal! I never knew my left hand was so out of shape.. Keep the awesome lessons coming.

allen.vanwertallen.vanwert replied on September 29th, 2011

You're both welcome!

thomascrileythomascriley replied on September 29th, 2011

What a work out, I'm so weak. I really like your lessons. You have great methods and ways to teach. thanks.

greyskiesgreyskies replied on September 29th, 2011

Ouch!!! Thanks for the pain, Allen! I can't wait to to see what's coming next.

Speed And Technique

Found in our Beginner Lesson Sets

Allen "Robot" Van Wert teaches his approach to developing technique necessary for fast playing.

Lesson 1

Series Introduction And Picking Primer

Allen kicks off his technique series with a primer lesson on right hand picking.

Length: 30:52 Difficulty: 1.5 Members Only
Lesson 2

Rudimentary Drills

Allen shows you the 24 rudiments crucial to developing finger dexterity.

Length: 7:22 Difficulty: 1.5 FREE
Lesson 3

Left Hand Endurance Building

Allen shows an amazing muscle building exercise that really works out the left hand!

Length: 9:32 Difficulty: 1.5 Members Only
Lesson 4

Fundamental Picking Exercise

This lesson covers an exercise that works on all the major picking techniques.

Length: 11:15 Difficulty: 2.0 Members Only
Lesson 5

Synchronize And Stretch

Allen shows you a great exercise set that helps with synchronizing your hands as well as stretching your left hand.

Length: 8:18 Difficulty: 3.0 Members Only
Lesson 6

The System

Allen Van Wert explains his system of programming, reinforcing, and forgetting primary functions of guitar playing. This system is a long term practice routine that will take some time to fully implement...

Length: 50:53 Difficulty: 3.0 Members Only
Lesson 7

Interval Exercises

This is the next step after you have learned Allen's "system". If you follow Allen's teachings you are sure to have a deep understanding of intervals and scales.

Length: 21:29 Difficulty: 3.0 Members Only
Lesson 8

Triad Arpeggio Exercises

First, Allen gives a pop quiz for you to check your own ability to visualize the fretboard. Then he gives exercises for programming your triad arpeggios.

Length: 21:30 Difficulty: 3.0 Members Only
Lesson 9

Seventh Arpeggio Exercises

Allen Van Wert shows you how to apply his systematic practice approach to 7th arpeggios. If you are just discovering this series make sure to start at the beginning or some things may not make sense.

Length: 8:36 Difficulty: 3.0 Members Only
Lesson 10

Fretboard Advancement

Allen briefly explains how he refers to modes in the context of this lesson and then shows you how to grow your knowledge of the fretboard.

Length: 15:35 Difficulty: 3.0 Members Only
Lesson 11

Rut Busting Exercises

Get out of that rut with these exercises from Allen Van Wert!

Length: 10:44 Difficulty: 3.0 Members Only
Lesson 12

Basic Tapping

Allen returns to his speed and technique lesson series with a look at the basics of tapping. This lesson will act as a primer for more advanced tapping concepts and eventual speed increases as well!

Length: 30:42 Difficulty: 2.5 Members Only
Lesson 13

Using Tapping to Extend Your Range

Allen is back with the next installment in his look at tapping. In this lesson Allen discusses and demonstrates how you can use tapping to easily extend your range while playing.

Length: 11:05 Difficulty: 3.0 Members Only
Lesson 14

Single String Tapping

Allen is back with more tapping goodness! This time around, he discusses single string tapping.

Length: 10:27 Difficulty: 2.5 Members Only
Lesson 15

Multi-String Tapping

By this time you should have a pretty strong grasp of tapping basics and be proficient at tapping on one string. In lesson 15 of his Speed and Technique series, Allen starts working you up to tapping...

Length: 14:46 Difficulty: 3.0 Members Only
Lesson 16

Tapped Octave Minor Pentatonic

In this lesson Allen demonstrates an octave displaced, tapped, minor pentatonic scale. This can be useful for solo work and getting around chord changes!

Length: 10:28 Difficulty: 3.0 Members Only
Lesson 17

Emulating Keyboards

Allen is back with a comprehensive look what what many people call "Touch Tapping." Allen likes to describe this as emulating a keyboard on the guitar.

Length: 32:41 Difficulty: 3.0 Members Only
Lesson 18

Combining Tapping Techniques

Now that you should have most of the tapping techniques under your fingers, it's time to put them all together. In this lesson Allen provides you with a piece of music that encompasses all of the techniques...

Length: 11:16 Difficulty: 3.0 Members Only
Lesson 19

String Skipping Exercises

To wrap up his current film session and look at the speed and technique series, Allen provides a lesson based around exercises to build your string skipping technique.

Length: 29:31 Difficulty: 3.0 Members Only

About Allen Van Wert View Full Biography Allen Van Wert got the nickname "ROBOT" from his unusual guitar tapping techniques that often sound like a video game more than a guitar. He has studied and played a wide variety of genres. His experimental and eclectic amalgamation of music combining shred guitar, crazy tapping techniques, and electronically infused composition contrasted by a highly emotional soft melodic side, make his debut album a really fun and interesting listen for just about anyone.

Allen has recorded guitar for the famed video game soundtrack composer Jesper Kyd (Composer of Hitman, Splinter Cell and many other big title games) as well as composing and recording for movie trailers and TV commercials. He has also been producing, recording and co-writing for local artists in his small home/project studio.

His three books on guitar technique, ear training and songwriting have helped many students over the past couple of years. Allen has also played in various cover bands in many genres since the age of 16 and has played to over 5000 on a few occasions. He was a featured guest musician on the album "West Coast Shred Fest".

In his spare time, Allen programs video games for fun. Wooo!

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Mitch Reed Mitch Reed

Mitch teaches his interpretation of the classic "Cannonball Rag." This song provides beginning and intermediate guitarists...

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Phil Keaggy Phil Keaggy

Welcome to the Phil Keaggy Master Course! In this series introduction, Phil shows and tells us what we can expect from this...

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Don Ross Don Ross

New fingerstyle instructor Don Ross introduces himself, his background, and what you should expect in this series.

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Calum Graham Calum Graham

Award winning, Canadian fingerstyle guitarist Calum Graham introduces his Jamplay Artist Series, which aims to transform...

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Dave Yauk Dave Yauk

Learn a simple mini song that illustrates just how intertwined scales and chords really are. Dave uses a G chord paired...

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Electric Guitar Lesson Samples

Our electric guitar lessons are taught by instructors with an incredible amount of teaching experience.

Chris Liepe Chris Liepe

Chris brings his ingenuity to this lesson on the American folk song called "Where Did You Sleep Last Night?" Also known as...

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Nick Greathouse Nick Greathouse

Nick starts his series with Alternate Picking part 1. Improve your timing, speed, and execution with this important lesson.

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Aaron Marshall Aaron Marshall

JamPlay welcomes instrumental guitarist Aaron Marshall for a comprehensive master course. In this first lesson Aaron discusses...

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Steve Smyth Steve Smyth

JamPlay sits down with veteran fret grinder Steve Smyth of Forbidden and The EssenEss Project. He talks about how he got...

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John Shannon John Shannon

Meet John Shannon and his approach to rhythm guitar. John discusses why he put this lesson series together and what his...

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Kris Norris Kris Norris

Kris analyzes different pick sizes and their effect on his playing. Using a slow motion camera, he is able to point out the...

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Prashant Aswani Prashant Aswani

Do you want to play more musical sounding solos? Do you want to play solos with more emotion behind them? Maybe you're the...

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Lauren Passarelli Lauren Passarelli

Lauren Passarelli offers up her wisdom on purchasing a guitar. She also includes information regarding proper setup and care....

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Braun Khan Braun Khan

In this lesson, Braun teaches the chord types that are commonly used in jazz harmony. Learn how to build the chords and their...

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Andre Nieri Andre Nieri

Born in 1986 and hailing from Brazil, Andre showed musical inclination at an early age. Influenced by native Brazilian Jazz...

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Join over 502278 guitarists who have learned how to play in weeks... not years!

Signup today to enjoy access to our entire database of video lessons, along with our exclusive set of learning tools and features.

Unlimited Lesson Viewing

A JamPlay membership gives you access to every lesson, from every teacher on our staff. Additionally, there is no restriction on how many times you watch a lesson. Watch as many times as you need.

Live Lessons

Exclusive only to JamPlay, we currently broadcast 8-10 hours of steaming lesson services directly to you! Enjoy the benefits of in-person instructors and the conveniences of our community.

Interactive Community

Create your own profile, manage your friends list, and contact users with your own JamPlay Mailbox. JamPlay also features live chat with teachers and members, and an active Forum.

Chord Library

Each chord in our library contains a full chart, related tablature, and a photograph of how the chord is played. A comprehensive learning resource for any guitarist.

Scale Library

Our software allows you to document your progress for any lesson, including notes and percent of the lesson completed. This gives you the ability to document what you need to work on, and where you left off.

Custom Chord Sheets

At JamPlay, not only can you reference our Chord Library, but you can also select any variety of chords you need to work on, and generate your own printable chord sheet.

Backing Tracks

Jam-along backing tracks give the guitarist a platform for improvising and soloing. Our backing tracks provide a wide variety of tracks from different genres of music, and serves as a great learning tool.

Interactive Games

We have teachers covering beginner lessons, rock, classic rock, jazz, bluegrass, fingerstyle, slack key and more. Learn how to play the guitar from experienced players, in a casual environment.

Beginners Welcome.. and Up

Unlike a lot of guitar websites and DVDs, we start our Beginner Lessons at the VERY start of the learning process, as if you just picked up a guitar for the first time.Our teaching is structured for all players.

Take a minute to compare JamPlay to other traditional and new methods of learning guitar. Our estimates for "In-Person" lessons below are based on a weekly face-to-face lesson for $40 per hour.

Price Per Lesson < $0.01 $4 - $5 $30 - $50 Free
Money Back Guarantee Sometimes n/a
Number of Instructors 92 1 – 3 1 Zillions
Interaction with Instructors Daily Webcam Sessions Weekly
Professional Instructors Luck of the Draw Luck of the Draw
New Lessons Daily Weekly Minutely
Structured Lessons
Learn Any Style Sorta
Track Progress
HD Video - Sometimes
Multiple Camera Angles Sometimes - Sometimes
Accurate Tabs Maybe Maybe
Scale/Chord Libraries
Custom JamTracks
Interactive Games
Learn in Sweatpants Socially Unacceptable
Gasoline Needed $0.00 $0.00 ~$4 / gallon! $0.00

Mike H.

"I feel like a 12 year old kid with a new guitar!"

I am 66 years young and I still got it! I would have never known this if it had not been for Jamplay! I feel like a 12 year old kid with a new guitar! Ha! I cannot express enough how great you're website is! It is for beginners and advanced pickers! I am an advanced picker and thought I had lost it but thanks to you all, I found it again! Even though I only play by ear, I have been a member a whopping whole two weeks now and have already got Brent's country shuffle and country blues down and of course with embellishments. Thank you all for your wonderful program!

Greg J.

"With Jamplay I can fit in a random session when I have time and I can go at my own pace"

I'm a fifty eight year old newbie who owns a guitar which has been sitting untouched in a corner for about seven years now. Last weekend I got inspired to pick it up and finally learn how to play after watching an amazing Spanish guitarist on TV. So, here I am. I'm starting at the beginning with Steve Eulberg and I couldn't be happier (except for the sore fingers :) Some day I'm going to play like Steve! I'm self employed with a hectic schedule. With Jamplay I can fit in a random session when I have time and I can go at my own pace, rewinding and replaying the videos until I get it. This is a very enjoyable diversion from my work yet I still feel like I'm accomplishing something worthwhile. Thanks a lot, Greg


"I believe this is the absolute best site for guitar students."

I am commenting here to tell you and everyone at JamPlay that I believe this is the absolute best site for guitar students. I truly enjoy learning to play the guitar on JamPlay.com. Yes, I said the words, ""enjoy learning."" It is by far the best deal for the money.

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