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Playing a Left-Handed Guitar

Shrinivas Kanade Jan 22, 2019
Your left-handed child wants to learn to play guitar. Well, is that a big deal? Yes, it is! To know more about the left-handed guitar playing, the guitar, those who have made it big and the awkwardness these individuals had to suffer because of being lefties, read on...
Living in a world that is primarily built for right-handed people, puts left-handed individuals in quite a spot. Door knobs are placed on the right side of the door which makes it easy to use for the right-handed persons, but for most left-handed people, it is on the wrong side.
Locks open when a key is turned clockwise, which is easy for a right-handed person. Most of the things built in this world, are designed, taking into account the fact that 85-87% of the people are right-handed. The same holds true in the world of music too, as most people find it very difficult to obtain left-handed guitars.
Most musical instruments are made for right-handed people. A left-handed person wanting to learn to play a guitar will not only find it difficult to buy a left-handed guitar but also has difficulty in locating teacher. Many of the teachers flatly refuse to teach such a pupil and those who teach, insist that the pupil use the right hand instead.
Does that mean that lefties are always going to be at a disadvantage? Paul McCartney, a well-known guitarist and perhaps, one of the most important members of 'The Beatles' is a lefty, and so is the legendary solo guitarist and performer, Jimi Hendrix. Both of them, mastered the art of playing the guitar.
Many lefties are ambidextrous and can adjust and learn to play right-handed guitars, using the right hand. Using a simple 'clapping' test, it easy to identify, which hand a child will most prefer to use to play the guitar.
While clapping, if a child holds his right hand steady, and claps with his left, then it is beneficial to let him play a left-handed guitar. If the child uses both hands to clap, even though he is left-handed, he can learn to play a right-handed guitar. Making this distinction is important, as there are very few manufacturers who make these guitars.
If your child is lefty, then the relevant guitar is a necessity for him. A rule of thumb, is to observe how a child holds the guitar. If the guitar is held in the style of a left-handed guitarist, then buy him that one. It is also possible to convert a right-handed guitar, to a guitar that can be played using the left hand.
There are four ways in which a left-handed aspirant can do this. He can play a right-handed guitar with the right hand or can use the left hand to pick the strings of the right-handed guitar, held upside down.
The guitar player can use either left-handed or a right-handed, modified to be played using the left hand.
The correct order of strings for any player, is to have the 'low E' string on the top. Guitarists, such as, Paul McCartney play left-handed guitars with the strings placed in the correct order'. Guitarists using this style, either use a genuine left-handed guitar, or a right-handed altered guitar, that has the low strings on the top.
Guitarists such as, Bob Geldof use the left hand to pick the strings of the guitar, which has the 'low E' string at the bottom.
Guitarists take the help of musical notations or guitar tablature, also called 'guitar tabs', in which strings and frets of guitars, are represented in the form of a table. Guitar tabs help guitarists play all kinds of music on the guitar.
Nowadays, there is lot of support given to left-handed guitar playing. Many guitarists, feel that teaching these children to play the guitar using their prominent hand, will help them realize their talent. There are many sources that offer lessons, among them the Internet is most preferred.
Some websites also provide free online guitar lessons, for left-handed individuals. These lessons are also available in the form of CD's and DVD's. However, being taught by a teacher is the right way of learning to play a right-handed or left-handed guitar.