Can You Play Guitar With Fat Fingers?


Playing the guitar is a famous hobby for most people. They often inspire others to pick up and learn how to play it. Some beginners experience common mistakes, especially with their fingers. Can you play guitar with fat fingers?

You can play the guitar even if you feel you have fat fingers. The struggle in playing it is more of a beginner’s problem. It is hard for them to produce a good chord sound since their fingers are not used to it. Learning this instrument involves proper positioning, fretting, and handling.

If you’re planning to learn a guitar, it doesn’t require specific finger types. Steady exercise and practice can help you succeed. If you want to know more about playing the guitar with fat fingers, we will guide you in this article.

Can You Play Guitar With Fat Fingers?

Generally, yes, you can play with fat fingers.Fat fingers have been one of the usual troubles by the newbies in playing guitars. This concern is not the real issue. It’s more on the beginner’s fretting problem.

There are different types of fingers but all of these can play guitar over time. Instead of stiff fingers, others might tell they can’t play due to their fat fingers. If you think this is your problem, take note that it’s not.

Playing guitar with fat fingers

Difficulty in fretting the guitar is a common obstacle for starters. Always remember that it’s an innate stage that you need to overcome. Consistent practice and exercise can help you conquer this struggle.

A beginner’s hand is not used to fret the strings on a guitar. When they play a chord with an open string, they often use too much force. It results to mute the other strings unnoticeably.

Guitar necks are standard and suitable for all kinds of fingers. There are instances that fat fingers may hamper you to continue learning to play the guitar. The solution is you shouldn’t stop so you can control your fretting.

It is indeed hard to develop guitar-playing techniques. It’ll take a long time before you can absorb it. Learning it is going on an extensive journey and you’ll discover different skills.

My Recommended: 3 Best Electric Guitars for Fat Fingers

Reasons Why You’re Having Troubles Playing the Guitar With Fat Fingers

The problem of newbies learning a guitar is almost the same as those with fat fingers. These difficulties are usually not on the structure of your fingers.

Several reasons that beginners always express. Since you are new to this, it’s natural to experience such.

1. Incorrect holding of guitar

The positioning of the guitar is usually one of the common troubles. Once the guitar is handled incorrectly, it’ll influence your hands. This is why most newbies are saying that it’s hard for them to fret.

You can’t instantly learn how to smoothly fret a chord on the guitar. With improper hand placement, it’s tougher to fret. Make sure to relax your hands as it may also lead to problems if you force yourself to do it in the wrong way.

2. Not used to curling fingers

Since you’re aiming to make a sound, you tend to push the strings very hard. This results in the rigid fretting of the guitar. The lack of practice in curling fingers is the reason why it occurs.

In fretting, only the tips of the guitar should touch the strings. It’ll produce a clean sound once you master it.

3. Needs to stretch their fingers more

Daily practice can stretch the beginner’s hands more. The lack of stretching results in the difficulty of moving your muscles in fretting. To achieve it, constant finger exercises can greatly help.

The best way to train yourself is to endure the starter practices. Avoid jumping from one lesson to another as it will slow down your progress.

Tips to Play Guitar With Fat Fingers

Since fat fingers are not the main issue, you must observe the proper ways. You must correct your mistakes by following accurate positioning and handling. Take note that there are no shortcuts in learning a guitar and other musical instruments.

Guitar Playing with Fat Fingers

1. Hold the guitar properly

You must position your guitar conveniently in the opposite direction of the lap and your fretting hand. Let’s say you’re right-handed, you should place the guitar body on your right lap. The back of the guitar is rested on your stomach and the neck is slightly vertical.

Tilting the neck of the guitar upwards and slightly forward provides more space and less tension when fretting. Make sure that the guitar is not aligned with your chest.

2. Use your thumb instead of your palm

Some chords are difficult to press on the strings. The reason why it happens is you’re using your palm to press at the back of the guitar’s neck instead of your thumb.

Try to use your thumb at the back of the guitar’s neck when pressing the strings. It will give you more room tocurl your fingers on the fretboard. You can compare both ways to know the correct technique.

Most of the time, fretting involves only the thumb at the back. Ensure that your palm does not touch the neck.

3. Use only the tip of your fingers

Curling the fingers properly can substantially contribute to producing a good sound. For those who have fat fingers, you should use only the tips of your fingers when pressing the strings.

One of the huge mistakes that beginners do is covering the open strings with their fingers. Pressing a single string is easy, but when they try a chord, it’s muting the other strings.

Regular training can solve the problem of fretting. As you go along, you’ll notice the development of how you handle the guitar. The process will help you grow so you can easily control your fingers.


Learning a musical instrument requires dedication and passion. Without consistency, progress is slow for beginners. Fat fingers are not an obstacle in playing the guitar; rather you just need to correct the handling, positioning, and fretting of your hands. No matter what type of fingers you have, you can always learn how to play them.

Sourav Biswas

Music is my life and I love to play guitar so much. It's been a part of me for as long as I can remember. I grew up in a musical family, and my parents were always supportive of my passion for music. I am also a freelance writer who has been writing for over 10 years. I have written for both online and offline publications, including Amazon and Medium.

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