I will be putting out a series of short guitar video lessons for slightly advanced players. The first lesson is a simple dexterity finger stretch exercise, using one and the same chord shape, but moving it up and down the fretboard.
The base chord shape here is a simple A5 Power Chord. But we add one more note, the 9th. This adds tension and makes for a dark yet soothing sound. But I guess everybody hears things differently. Anyway, start off with playing the base chord.
Index finger is on the 6th string, fifth fret, giving you the pitch of A (root).
Middle finger on the 5th string, 7th fret, giving you the pitch of E (fifth).
Pinky on the 4th string, 9th fret, producing the pitch of B (ninth).
We will be using this exact shape all throughout. For beginners, this might be literally a bit too much of a stretch there. However, if you are past the beginner stage, you probably will get used to it rather quickly. That said, there are a few challenges even for you, because moving that chord from an A to an F, you have to reach across quite a bit.
Don’t force any of this. While you should feel a bit of tension – after all this is a dexterity finger stretch exercise and thus the whole purpose – and pulling in your hand, stop if it starts hurting. You need to build up muscle, flexibility and dexterity slowly, this doesn’t come over night. Key is to start out very slowly. Play the chords first, then add some picking, just like I demonstrated in the video.
But this is just one of many guitar dexterity exercises, there are obviously tons of others. This one though, at least lets you use the same chord shape. Also, combine the 5add9 guitar chords with other chords to add variation and provide some contrast.