Parent article: Advanced guitar lessons
Since starting this site, a lot of people have asked me about left handed guitar lessons and where to find them online.
The problem is that guitar lessons are almost never filmed from a left handed perspective, i.e. the Kurt Cobain stance. Instead, you get the perspective of the left hand managing the fretboard while the right hand strums. This is the more common right handed arrangement.
In this article, I'm going to show you how you can watch almost any guitar lesson video on the internet from the perspective of a left handed guitarist, where the right hand manages the fretboard and the left hand does the strumming.
We'll look at three different ways to do this:
- Guitar Tricks and JamPlay via a CSS trick
- YouTube (Justinguitar, Active Melody, etc.) via a Chrome extension
- TrueFire via their built-in flipping tool
I should warn ahead of time for some of these methods there's some technical hoops to jump through, but I'll walk you through it as simply as possible. The other problem is that when you flip a video vertically, it flips the text and tablature as well, if it's presented as part of the video.
That's a small drawback, but one that you should at least be aware of.
We'll go from the trickiest to the easiest.
How to Watch Guitar Tricks and JamPlay Left Handed
Guitar Tricks and JamPlay are the two most popular online guitar lesson programs, and our top two recommendations for most people wanting to learn guitar online. If you want to test out this method yourself, you can sign up for free trials here:
Or if you already have a membership, login and go to a video of your choosing. Any video will work for this hack. Keep in mind, I'm doing this on a desktop computer in a Google Chrome browser. If you need to, download Google Chrome here.
Here's a quick video that goes through the process. You can also read on for the detailed write-up:
Step 1: Right click the gray area beneath the video and click "Inspect"
2. Select the "wideLessonVideo2" element
This will bring up the inspection window, which will look fairly confusing, but you only need to find the following line of HTML code:
Here's what it will look like in the window:
3. Add flip code to the "Styles" section
Once you've clicked on that element, you should see this section on the right-hand side of the window. Click directly below the "max-width" line to add a new line of code:
You can now type - or copy and paste - the following line of code:
Here's what it will look like as a new line of code:
Then over on the lesson page, you should see the video flipped making it appear as though you're watching a left-handed demonstration:
Do I have to do this for every video?
Right now, yes. You'll have to do this for every video. However, we're working on a browser extension that will simply allow you to do it by clicking a single button. Once that's available, we'll send out an email and let everyone know.
Does the process work the same on JamPlay?
In JamPlay, the process is almost exactly the same. Except this time, we're looking for an HTML element titled "videoWrapper".
How to Watch YouTube Guitar Lessons (Justinguitar, Active Melody, and more) Left Handed
The process for watching YouTube guitar lessons - or any YouTube videos for that matter - from a flipped perspective is a lot simpler. If you're using Chrome, you can add the Flip a Video for YouTube extension for free.
Then you can simply go to the YouTube guitar lesson you want to watch and click the icon to enable the extension and flip the video.
As you can see from the above screenshot, you'll have to put up with on-screen content being flipped as well, like the chord diagram shown in this particular Justinguitar lesson. Still, it's a far easier method of visualizing what you're seeing and learning from on-screen demonstrations.
TrueFire Program with Built-In Video Flipping Tool
The third and final option for getting left handed guitar lessons is the TrueFire program, which uses a video player that has the flipping mechanism built in. You can watch any video or course on TrueFire as though it's being demonstrated by a left handed player.
If you're interested in TrueFire, here are some resources that might be helpful:
If you've been frustrated by a lack of left handed guitar lessons online, I would advise using one of these methods and just putting up with the inconvenience of flipped chord diagrams and tabs. Most of that stuff isn't going to be on-screen anyway.
Since the problem is visualizing what you're learning, these tweaks solve that issue almost entirely.
I'd advise starting with YouTube and just browsing through some of the content that you would have thought previously to be too confusing or unhelpful to you because of your handedness. If you want to keep going into something a little more structured and intense, try one of the other three programs we've recommended here.
Do you have questions about any of the tips we've listed in this article? I understand that some of it is technical and could be confusing. If so, feel free to drop me a line in the comments section below and I'll be happy to help as much as possible.