Trailing Edge for Strumming Only?


I used to be a trailing edge picker, but converted to leading edge when I first watched Troy’s videos around 4-5 years ago. Switching to leading edge was the best thing for me personally, as it led to much more relaxation, all of my picking hand injuries disappeared, and I gained tons more speed.


When strumming, I have never been able to get used to leading edge both mechanically and tonally. I am just so much more comfortable using trailing edge when strumming, and it sounds much brighter.

So my questions are:

  1. Woud you recommend I do my best to learn to strum the same way I pick (Leading edge)? Or would switching between these two be okay? I know that Troy’s general view is to do what feels comfortable, but I just feel “guilty” using 2 different pick angles (stupid I know).

  2. Does anyone else here alternate between 2 different pick angles for strumming and picking?

  3. And finally, in the video below, does it appear that Guthrie is using trailing edge picking when demonstrating how to practice his 32nd note strumming? (Time stamp is embedded in video)

Thanks for any advice!

  1. I don’t think it’s stupid, or “bad”. I’d make sure you’re aware of the changes that occur when you switch between them, but otherwise it’s no biggie.

  2. I have 2 different grips for rhythm and lead (both leading edge though) and for bass I do trailing edge.

  3. Hard to tell, but I would guess he might be playing this a bit “flat on” the string (no edge at all).

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I use a few different grips.
One for the majority of my lead playing (forearm and wrist usx), a more compact grip for two way sweep picking, and another for rhythm playing.

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Awesome, thanks for the info and it’s good to hear that other people use various grips. And good call about Guthrie - I hadn’t considered a more straight on angle

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Good ro know, do you use trailing or leading edge for all 3? Or a mixture of these angles?

Yes, I often switch to trailing edge for rhythm- and for Spanky Alford, Steve Cropper type gospel and motown lines where I also strike with the fingers holding the pick at the same time.

I think a trailing edge grip which strikes the strings at almost 90° might be my cleanest, fastest, and loudest DBX mode… But the muting mechanics are a bit awkward, sometimes the grip feels weird, and I don’t have hybrid picking with it.

I wondered about this Guthrie clip too. The resolution is too low to tell though.

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I use leading edge for all three. I use angle pad for most lead playing, a compact trigger for sweep picking and a more extended trigger for rhythm. I just found that for me, these were the best grips for each.

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Great to hear, I think I will settle on this instead of trying to keep a uniform pick angle on lead and strumming.

And yeah, my trailing edge for strumming is a really steep angle too (maybe around 80° ) and while it does have its downfalls for me too - the main being that I feel like the pick is going to come flying out, I just have not been able to produce the same results with leading edge tonally and mechanically.

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