Strengthening the Left Hand to Increase Bass Playing Versatility

By Patrick Pfeiffer

Part of Bass Guitar For Dummies Cheat Sheet

For bass guitar players, a strong and limber left hand makes playing the bass more comfortable and enjoyable, and it helps in tackling complex chords and scales. A good exercise for the left hand is the following permutation exercise:

  • 1 stands for the index finger.

  • 2 stands for the middle finger.

  • 3 stands for the ring finger.

  • 4 stands for the pinkie.

Simply play through each column on every string and notice how your hands become more and more coordinated and limber. The numbers represent the different fingers of your left hand: