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Numbering Your Fretboard

In this guitar lesson we are going to learn about the numbers of the frets on the guitar. This may seem like a simple topic, but if you are a beginner it is pretty important. If you can quickly understand where to put your fingers during a lesson, you won’t get frustrated and you will learn faster. We have provided you with a diagram of the fretboard with each of the frets numbered.

Fret Board Numbering On Guitar

If your guitar has a different number of frets from the one you see in this video, don’t worry. Most electric guitars have 21, 22, or 24 frets. Fenders and Gibson style guitars usually have 21 or 22 frets. Ibanez and Jackson style guitars usually have 22 or 24 frets. If you have an acoustic guitar it will probably have around 20 frets.

Let’s look at a few examples to learn how to count the frets on the guitar. Let’s say that someone told you to put your 1st finger on the 5th fret of the 1st string. You would start counting on your open high E string as 0. From there, count 5 frets up. Now you would put your index finger on that 5th fret. Here is a diagram that shows the 1st finger on the 5th fret of the 1st string.

Fret Board Numbers 5th Fret

Now put your 2nd finger on the 12th fret of your 2nd string. Here is a diagram to show you where you should put your 2nd finger.

Fret Board Numbers On Guitar

Learning how to count the frets is pretty simple so you probably won’t have to spend much time on getting the hang of it. You should realize that once you get to the 12th fret of your guitar, the notes just start repeating. For example, the 12th fret of your open high E string is another E. This E is just one octave higher. Most guitars will have fret markers to help you kind of keep your place when you are playing. These markers come in all different shapes and sizes. The most common shapes are dots, blocks, trapezoids, and shark fins.

The next step is to learn the notes on the fretboard. You should also be comfortable with your finger numbers and reading sheet music!

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