Advanced Rhythmical Exercises

Another fifteen rhythmical exercises!

The key to playing rhythm in time lies within the right hand’s pendulum movement.

As the advanced rhythmical exercises are at 16th note pace, your right hand has to move at this pace throughout in order for you to stay in time.

It is vital that you play the patterns with the exact ‘up and down’ strokes the videos suggest and also that you practise to a click, pushing the BPM.

These last rhythmical exercises are the same rhythmical patterns as you played during your intermediate studies. However, now, the chords change.

Rhythmical exercises 1-5

These rhythmical exercises are the same as the intermediate rhythmical exercises, but here they change chords.

In the video lessons, I use dom9 chords, but any chords would work. After completing the exercises, change them into whatever other chords you like.

When you have pushed the BPM as far as you can and changed the chords around, start writing your own variations.

This is the key to developing, you have to start writing rhythms, then try to play them. Simply pick a rhythm, write it down, pick a couple of chords and you’re good to go.

To write your own exercises is the best way since it enables you to focus on your own specific weakness. Use the rhythms you struggle with to for maximum improvement.

Rhythmical exercises 6-10

Once you can play an example, push the BPM! When you can’t push the BPM anymore, change the chords.

Exercise 7, for example, is not difficult to understand, but to play it at a high BPM setting, sticking to the click and changing chords at the same time might be!

In exercise 9, the change of the chord on beat 4 is tricky.

Exercise 10 start on the 2nd 16th. Can you keep it up for a minute? At what BPM? For maximum effect, write down your BPM results.

Rhythmical exercises 11-15

These are your final rhythmical exercises. When you can play these it’s time to start writing your own.

Remember that rhythmical symbols are easy to translate to up and down strokes. Keep that pendulum movement going and you can’t fail.


To be a great reader of rhythm, you must be a great writer. When you have completed these last fifteen exercises, this must be your next focus, to write your own rhythms.

In the advanced guitar course, we spend a lot of time modifying chord, arpeggio and scale exercises rhythmically. By combining elements like this when you practise, you’ll improve much quicker.