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Learning to strum properly and consistently is very important to guitar playing.
Learning to count a rhythm can be invaluable in learning how to do this.
That said though being able to hear and recognise rhythms is more important.
A combination of the two will improve your playing drastically.
Below are examples of a typical strum:
Written as 1 2 + 3 4, spoken it is 1 2 and 3 4
Listen to the following audio and say 1 2 and 3 4 to each clap to get a better understanding of the strum.
The arrows show the direction of the strum.
Strumming the A Major Chord listen to the example below and then try it yourself.
Remember to follow the image above for the direction of your strums.
Below are some examples of chord progressions that you can practice changing chords and strumming.
Each example comes with an audio recording which you can listen to.
Example 1 playing A major, D major and E major chords
Example 2: Em, G major, D major and A major chords.
Example 3: Am, C major, Em and G major chords
Example 4: C major , Dm, Em and G major chords