The Secrets of Learning the Fretboard

Ex-020 Combining Alternate and Sweep Picking

Feature Image for Alternate and Sweep Picking Exercise

Improve your technique and speed by combining alternate picking and sweep picking.  In the following exercise, you will combine alternate picking lines with sweep picking lines in both directions (ascending and descending).

When ascending, notice how the notes on a string move to the right, but the sweep moves to the left.  Descending, the opposite pattern emerges.  It forms a Z-pattern, which isn’t required, but it may help you find other locations on the fretboard to combine alternate and sweep picking.

This exercise was written and recorded by James Coulthard. It is written in the key of E♭, which has 3 flats (B♭, A♭, E♭).

Combining Alternate Picking and Sweep Picking on the Guitar

About Patrick MacFarlane 127 Articles
I've been teaching guitar online for 25 years. My site has been featured in Rolling Stone and Acoustic Guitar magazine. I'm the author of The Secrets of Learning the Fretboard and Guitar Lesson World The Book.

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