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I'm a ukulele beginner and I'm finding it almost impossible to play the F-chord without my finger accidentally touching the A or the C strings. I have looked through YouTube but no matter what, I can't seem to find a position where I can hold the F and have all four strings play cleanly.

I can play the G string with my middle finger cleanly. I can also play the E string with my index finger cleanly. However, it seems that when I put them together, it doesn't work.

It might be just a matter of practice but it's been a week now and other chords like the G-chord were a lot faster to learn even though they're supposed to be harder. I think I'm doing something wrong with my hand. Any tips on how to hold my hand?

  • Have you tried using other fingers? For example using the index and the ring finger? – infinitezero Apr 28 at 21:14
  • @infinitezero interesting, I will try this. – user1936752 Apr 28 at 22:38
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You could try a different voicing. Instead of 2-0-1-0, try 5-5-5-3 (with fingers 2,3,4,1) or 5-5-5-8 (fingers 1-1-1-4, using a barre).

F is probably one of the trickiest of the basic chords to play cleanly as a beginner, very much like C on the guitar. Keep trying and you should eventually get it, but an alternate voicing might help you to get through the song you're learning and stay motivated.

Another thing to try is different placement of the thumb on the back of the neck. If the neck is sitting in the pocket of your hand, the fingers have to curl more to fret the strings and that curling could make it more difficult to fret one string and not touch the nearby ones. Try putting the thumb in the middle of the neck so the fingers and thumb are kind of "pinching" the neck and string between them. This makes the fingers a little straighter and it may be easier to control. Using a strap would help with this so you don't have to support the instrument with the same hand.

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I am wondering if you might need a bigger instrument. Have you ever tried playing on a tenor? Of course I don't know what size you are using at the moment.

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  • To tell you the truth, I don't either. This was a Ukulele bought second hand for ten bucks and it's my first musical instrument. I'm average sized though and don't think I have fat fingers - my first suspicion is to blame my technique, not the instrument. – user1936752 Apr 28 at 22:39

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