Victim of Stringhopping

I recently joined CTC and I went through Pickslanting Primer and watched the videos more than twice until Elbow motion, I figured that I fall into the category of Angle Pad grip, DWPS, and more supination playing. The problem I have is I’ve sadly learned String Hopping way and have been playing that way for about 8 years. I right now feel very discouraged that I am unable to unlearn that. Does anybody have the same issue? I want to get rid of string hopping any specific advice or exercise that I can follow to do it the right way?

P.S: When I watch the videos and play with Troy’s instructions I feel liberated but in a minute or two String Hopping comes hopping my way.


Are you using rest strokes? Could you show a clip of your playing?


Welcome to the community @Thilak_John!

One possibility is to try a completely different pick grip and hand / arm position. For example you could try a trigger grip or even a Steve Morse 3-finger grip. Just so that your form feels sufficiently different from your “usual”, and there might be less temptation to go back to old habits.

It doesn’t have to be a long term change either - could just be a start to get a different feel for the instrument, and give you more chances to discover a more efficient picking motion.


Thanks for the welcome @tommo!

I will try what you have suggested :slight_smile:

Also for the viewer’s reference here is my video to explain my problem.

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@tommo Do you find any serious issue with this video? Please let me know, I will take the advice and practice seriously! Also if @Troy can give his expert guidance I will follow that too. :slight_smile:

Dude this looks and sounds great! Do you have an example of a riff that is giving you trouble? Because everything you played here seems to work well :slight_smile:

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Agreed with Tommo, I think it sounds very good.

I wonder if what you meant by getting distracted is what happens at 0:11 on the A string in your video. Your motion is certainly different there than in your tremolo in the beginning of the video, maybe because you were fluently playing musical phrases instead of focusing on any certain motion.

But if you were trying to do a similar motion as your tremolo motion, then I understand why you feel something is off.

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Please excuse the shabby playing :smiley:

This is one of my own riffs and you see if you can find flaws with this picking.


I somehow don’t really know what motion and how to use them … this poor habit of picking however you want for so many years have restricted my technical playing. I struggle with the right hand and left-hand sync when I play fast. My mind can’t really be 100% sure if my alternate picking is accurate. etc… these issues have discouraged me and continues to discourage.

I thought that sounded great! You are using a mixture of different picking techniques here (I think I see some all-downstrokes and some alternate), but what is clear is that the riff is working! You also appear to have good control of those faster tremolo bursts on the low E string.

Unless you are feeling pain or discomfort while playing, there is nothing I would suggest to change here :slight_smile:

One comment is that your fast picking motion appears to be upstroke escape, so it should work well for any lick that switches strings after an upstroke (e.g. even numbers of notes per string starting on a down). Give that a shot and let us know how it goes!

Thanks for the feedback @tommo really appreciate it.

Yes, for sure I feel discomfort when I play fast riffs and I also feel I move my wrist too far while I notice so many players keep the wrist movements minimal, is that a thing that I need to focus and get it right?

@Thilak_John hey I’m not sure if there is stringhopping going on - but it sounds fantastic! Excellent playing!

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I agree with the others – I certainly would not call that “shabby playing”.

It does seem like you struggle a bit though, but I think that is mostly the nature of the riff: With a mixture of bursts on the low E and the string jumps with a single note on a high string, it is simply not possible to play it 100 % efficiently. What I mean is, it is not arranged in a way to make single escape picking possible. You would need an efficient double escape technique of some sort, or perhaps hybrid picking.

One interesting thing though – about halfway through you seem to change your picking from strictly downstokes to D U on the E string. Does that it make easier? Perhaps this is something to explore further.

Another thing to try is playing your E string “burst” or “chugs” (?) with alternate picking, ending on an escaped dowstroke with the help of the wrist, which sets you up for an easier string skip and an upstroke on the single note on the A or D string. Just a thought.

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Hey @Thilak_John, I think the advice of @Johannes is spot on! I will just add that it’s difficult to give totally general advice on one’s picking technique… because “picking technique”, for most people, means a collection of different mechanical solutions suitable for different mechanical problems! E.g. I may have a picking technique that works great for lick X but is totally unsuitable for lick Y… if that makes sense :smiley:

I think the best way to use the technique critique category is to post one example of a very specific thing you are working on, for example:

“I am struggling with this 3-note-per string lick played with alternate picking, here is a video”

So I think a good next step for you is to identify a very specific picking combination that you are struggling with and show us with a short video :slight_smile:

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@tommo and @Johannes

Thank you for your valuable input and I apologize for the late response. However, after trying to work out how to keep my playing clean, tight and follow the mechanics I carefully watched Eric Johnson’s wrist and his placement on the guitar and tried moving my picking hand slightly forward from the bridge, and that immediately worked for me and I feel liberated already. If you see my picking hand in the above videos my palm s placed almost on the bridge and that seems right according to Troy’s guidance in pick slanting primer videos. However, now my palm is little towards my middle pickup and that was my breakthrough :slight_smile: Now I am watching the videos and doing the Homework. Thank you guys for such valuable feedback that helped me get through my hurdle. I mean it. :slight_smile:


No problem! Glad to hear it!