Smaller guitars for women?
I'm 16 and am teaching myself to play acoustic guitar. I play a friend's old one which he gave me before going to uni so I'm not entirely sure what exact model but it's an acoustic Eastwood one.
Its going well and the only thing I've been struggling with for ages now is bar chords, no matter how much I practice. I have pretty small hands so I was wondering if buying a 3/4 guitar would be easier for me to play on? I know they're usually for kids but is it completely laughable for adults to play them too? And can you get ones that are for slightly more advanced players rather than beginners?
Also, someone suggested looking at Daisy Rock guitars as they're especially for girls but after looking at the website and reading reviews etc I'm still not convinced that they'll sound as good, they seem to me like they're more fashionable than decent sounding.. does anyone have one, and could tell me a bit more about the quality/what it's like? Or could someone suggest some other decent but not too pricey guitars that are suited for smaller hands?
Daisy Rock makes pretty good guitars, designed and manufactured by the Schecter company.
My wife shifted from a Strat to a Jaguar, which has a slightly shorter neck, and it's been a great help to her. So I'd guess that a smaller/shorter guitar would help you.
Someone else might be able to give you specific brands for acoustics.
Okay I'll look into it, thanks!
Luna Guitars may be another manufacturer to check out.
But another thing to look into is the shape and style of your guitar. Dreadnought style guitars, because of their shape, are usually tougher for women to play. A folk-style (the same basic size and body shape as a classical) may be easier for you even on a full size guitar.
Also, be sure to check that your current guitar has a good set up (the action, meaning the height of the strings from the fretboard, should be at a reasonable measure for you to play the strings with minimal pressure). Many people think that they have too small hands but it's simply that their current guitar, or the current guitar's set up, is simply not friendly to the player. Try out other full sized guitars in the music shop and see how they compare to yours. You may find it's simply a matter of shape and set up and not one of the guitar's size.
Hope this helps and welcome to Guitar Noise. Looking forward to seeing you around on the Forums.
Get the guitar set up and play through it. You don't need to handicap yourself to a smaller guitar. My sister is 4'11" (150cm) and has been a professional guitar player for 12 years playing a 50's tele, a country gent both hefty axes.
I would defently recomend getting to a shop and trying a few others. If your playing a Dreadnought style now, and it seems that most of the lower end ones are, im not suprised your having issues. Every brand has a diferent name for the body styles/sizes, but they seem to group in a few diferent sizes across the lines. Some are much smaller then others, and not having to reach around quite so far might make it less a struggle. Also diferent guitars have diferent neck shapes. Some are bigger in crosssection, some smaller. Diferent profiles, etc... a diferent shape neck might help you also. I wish I remember the brand... but sorry I forgot.. I hit up a shop over the summer wile on vacation, and found this sweet little nimber. Nice smaller size body, and a nice thin neck. it played and sounded OH SO SWEET!! granted.. Im a big guy, with large hands... but still, the smaller full size guitars are out there. get out and try a few of the smaller full size before you resort to a 3/4 scale. Im sure you will find one you like, and fits you better. Also.. I found I like the sound from the smaller body accustics better. they seem a little brighter...more crisp sounding, and my ear at least likes that.
I think I'm going to go for a Baby Taylor or, if my parents aren't willing to spend that much, a Luna Safari! I live in like the middle of nowhere so going to a dealer and trying them out isn't really an option..
You said that a Dreadnought style is probably why I'm having issues, what exactly is a Dreadbought style? Do you think that a smaller dreadnought guitar like the luna safari will cause problems too?
Here is an article that explains and illustrates the various styles of acoustic guitars:
Typically, many women and smaller men have a more difficult time getting their fretting arm around the lower half of the dreadnought on account of its size and shape, which leads to making adjustments in holding the guitar which in turn leads to not having the fretting hand in an optimal position to do its job (fingering the notes and chords). The classical, or folk, shape, tends to be a little easier for most folks to hold properly.
Additionally, most beginners starting out tend to unintentionally make fretting the guitar harder by tilting the top of the guitar slightly in order to see what their fingers are doing. This is perfectly natural and everyone does it at first. Adjusting the guitar in this manner, though, creates more of a stretch for one's fingers. Some people deal with this by practicing in front of a mirror in order to see their fingers. Some simply get their fingers in position and then reposition the guitar so that it is sitting upright (so that the face of the guitar is parallel with the spine, taking into account that one is sitting reasonably straight).
Again, most of these seeming "problems" are basic growing pains that everyone deals with. As a teacher I've met lots of people with small hands, but can only count on one hand those that truly needed to get a three-quarter sized guitar. It is usually more a matter of having a guitar shape that suits one's size or of sitting and holding the guitar properly (and, again, the guitar having a good set up can also help in some instances).
Here is something to consider, if anyone think they can't play a full size guitar: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=6a5rhAEUlXU
That helps, thankyou!