So the title pretty much says it all. When ascending the spider walk exercise the fleshy part of my fingers touch the next string. As I'm sure most of you know when ascending it's 1,2,3,4 fingers, move to the next string with the 1 finger but all the other fingers (2,3,4) must stay depressed on the string you started from. Then continue sequentially. I dont think I can arch my fingers any further, but maybe it is my thumb. For reference sake im not a new guitarist. Just trying to get more pinky control and can play the main verses and chorus of "Cliffs of Dover" at the songs original tempo. Solos are still a work in progress. Especially the begining 😵‍💫😅

So is it worth my time to do this exercise as it does seem to help for control, but I cant hear the notes ring out because I am muting them and I think I am doing this wrong.

Any tips would be greatly appreciated.


2 Answers 2


One finger per fret isn't for everyone, neither does it work for all the time. It's basically an exercise, and exercises often are just that, rather than real life playing. If you need to adapt, or do a variation on this, so be it. Work out your own fingering. Even when explicit fingering for something is recommended, it won't always be applicable for everyone.


This is an answer that applies to the spider walk which I am familiar with but have not spent much time doing but it also applies to playing in general.

If you can’t arch your fingers enough the position of the thumb is a possible culprit but more likely the problem is the position of your entire fretting arm. It is possible to move your thumb up and down the back of the neck and not change the curvature of the fingers at all. A better method is to think of moving your elbow forward and slightly down with your fingers on the board. This automatically adds curvature to your fingers and as an added benefit brings your thumb down a little lower on the back of the neck. As you get comfortable with this you can use subtle movements forward and back while playing to go to and from the low strings. Give it a try.

From what I’ve seen the spider walk is more of a mechanical, not really musical exercise but it seems helpful for helping develop finger strength, dexterity and independence so if you like it and find it useful spend a little time on it as a part of your practice routine.

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