Left Hand Finger Names for Guitar
The left hand fingers on guitar are named 1, 2, 3 and 4. The thumb does not have a specific name other than thumb because in modern guitar technique we generally don’t use it to fret any strings. Below are the names of the left hand fingers.
- Index Finger = 1
- Middle Finger = 2
- Ring Finger = 3
- Pinky or Little Finger = 4
Right Hand Finger Names on Guitar
Right hand finger names are most often used for classical guitar, fingerpicking, or fingerstyle but these days even electric players tend to use these names. The origin of the names come from the Spanish words for the fingers.
Right Hand Fingers:
- Thumb (pulgar) = p
- Index (indice) Finger = i
- Middle (medio) Finger = m
- Ring (anular) Finger = a
- Little (chiquito) Finger = c
Left Hand Technique Video for Classical Guitar
You can see my full lesson on Left Hand Position for Classical Guitar with video, photos, tips, and diagrams. The five main left hand tips for beginners I mention in the video are:
- Left wrist is straight, not over-extended
- Left palm and knuckles are parallel with the strings
- Left hand thumb is vertical and behind 2nd finger
- Left hand fingers are curved and on fingertips
- Left hand fingers play very close to the fret
Right Hand Technique Video for Classical
You can see my full lesson on Right Hand Position for Classical Guitar with video, photos, tips, and diagrams. Main right hand tips for beginners I mention in the video are:
- Your right arm contacts the guitar below the elbow but well before the wrist
- this will vary based on your size and the guitar size
- Your right hand should be somewhere near the rosette (especially beginners)
- Your right wrist is straight, that is, in-line with your forearm
- Your fingers move in toward the palm
Right Hand Fingernails
Check out my Fingernail Lesson for Classical Guitar Here.
More Lessons and References
Classical Guitar Finger Names and Notation on Wikipedia
- See my page on How to Use my Educational Series of books.
- I have a dedicated page for Courses of Study that I offer.
- Beginners will need a guitar and some gear to start.
- A Few Essential Lessons
- Basic Technique Overview Video – Slideshow of Photos, Tips, & Diagrams
- Sitting Position for Classical Guitar – Video, Photos, Tips, Diagrams
- Right Hand Position for Classical Guitar – Video, Photos, Tips, Diagrams
- Left Hand Position for Classical Guitar – Video, Photos, Tips, Diagrams
- 10 Classical Guitar Lessons for Beginners – Video, General Tips
- How to Practice Music and Organize Your Practice Session
- The Process of How to Read Music on Guitar
- How to Tune a Classical Guitar
- How to Play Legato on Classical Guitar
- The Gap Between Good Taste and Being Able to Do Good Work