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The Dreaded F Chord

Beginner Guitar Lesson

By Aleks on 23.9.2018

In this beginner guitar lesson, you will learn how to play the F major chord. The F chord is a barre chord, meaning that you fret all six strings on the guitar. It is usually one of the hardest chords to play for beginners, but it is an extremely useful chord to learn because it is a "moveable" shape. For example if you move the same shape to the fifth fret of the guitar (the barre with the index finger is on the 5th fret) you will play an A major chord. Try and play the open A chord and the A barre chord and you will notice that they sound almost the same.

A few tips to make learning the F chord easier:

  1. If you play the E chord with your second, third and fourth fingers, you'll notice that it's the same shape as the F chord, but your index finger is not pressing any strings. You can try to play the E chord that way and get used to the shape before trying the barre with your index finger.
  2. Try pushing your thumb at the bottom of the neck. You will notice that if your thumb is higher, your index finger gets curled up and if it's lower your index finger naturally straightens up and you have to apply a little bit less pressure.

As always it's best to practice changes when you get comfortable playing the chord. Here are some examples:

  • F to G
  • F to Am
  • F to E

You can try playing the E chord with your second, third and fourth fingers and just move them one fret higher when playing the change from E to F or vice versa.

F chord