Many of the Left Handed customers who have taken the time to shop at Adirondack Guitar (www.adkguitar.com) have told us that this is one of the most frustrating questions they are asked during their instrument buying experiences. The justifications vary from the lack of selection in colors, shapes and sizes to various musical theory reasons and just about anything else you can think of. Only the fortunate few ambidextrous people can choose which hand they prefer to use, the rest of us are left with a dominant hand that guides our decision, which controls how we do things such as bat, throw, use scissors, open a door, and – oh yeah – play guitar…
Rhythm is also developed in the dominant hand and although it may seem like the fretting hand does a lot of work (and it does!), you’re picking hand can also be doing a lot of different things at one time. You can be muting, picking, strumming, and percussive tapping in any combination at any time and the rhythms can be very complex. The fretting hand is also busy but it has fewer options as far as what it is capable of. I have had many customers tell me that they were forced to learn right handed back when they were young, which make some sense because left handed instruments were tough to find, but they eventually hit a wall and felt as though they stopped improving their guitar skills. They made a decision to switch to a left handed model, which always felt more comfortable, and they surpassed the level they were at playing right handed quickly. I like to think of it like riding a bike, you remember how to do it and once the other hand starts doing it a little bit it all comes back and then some. The dexterity in each hand can vary drastically and that can affect the ability to control your playing. It’s very easy for a right handed person to say, “Why don’t you just try it like I am doing it”, easier said than done.
If someone comes in and they are not sure if they should play right or left handed I hand them a guitar and ask them to sit down with it. People tend to sit down whatever way makes them feel more comfortable, either right handed or left handed, and that tells us which way to move forward. Being comfortable is a big part of being able to learn and master the guitar. If you are going against the grain and make it harder than it can be a defeating attempt to learn from the start. The most important thing is that you are having fun!
Make sure to check our select inventory of both right and left handed guitars at http://www.adkguitar.com/collections/guitars. We’re also always happy to talk to you through email (firstname.lastname@example.org) or over the phone (518-746-9500).
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July 13, 2021 8 min read
July 13, 2021 5 min read