Pentatonic Scale Picking Exercises

This lesson is designed to help you get started on getting comfortable playing the different pentatonic scale forms previously covered in another lesson.

It covers both alternate picking and economy picking!!

It is essential that you start out practicing these lessons very slowly and gradually work the tempo up.


After learning these initial exercises, try to expand upon them and make up your own. After you have the basics of how these scales are played, creating your own technique exercises is pretty easy.

Don't forget to download the lesson material PDF.

Pentatonic Picking Exercises PDF

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Pentatonic Scale Picking Exercises


  1. Ak .. ! on August 4, 2012 at 9:53 am

    Hey Carl This is Awesome .. !
    Thanks For your all lessons .. Good work bro .. 🙂

  2. Dean on January 3, 2013 at 4:45 pm

    Carl, this is an often overlooked but important concept, excellent lesson!

  3. Dan on June 25, 2013 at 5:48 pm

    good lesson man,

  4. Manos Tsolakidis on December 9, 2018 at 10:08 am

    Hi Carl, I would like to ask you about the Diatonic Major and Minor Scales (arranged by Andres Segovia). I fisrt started to play them as a warm up exercise when i played classical guitar (for fingerstyle). It was an extremely good exercise for fingers and speed bursting. Now i play only electric guitar (using a pick of course) and i keep play these scales as a warm up exercise. Is it good? Should i stop play them??
    Sorry if my English are bad. And thank you for the lessons you made. It is amazing!!!
    I will be glad if you can answer these comment.

    • Carl Brown on December 11, 2018 at 9:46 am

      Hey Manos, the Segovia scales are certainly not bad for your scale technique. However, my opinion on the Segovia scales is that they are more shifting exercises than speed building exercises.

      I would suggest doing speed bursts with the 3 notes per string scale forms to develop your speed. These scale forms are also the way you will see that most advanced guitar scale technique is performed on the guitar because of how well they lay out across the fretboard and the consistency of the picking.

      But by all means, practicing the 3 notes per string scale forms with the Segovia scales as well can be a great all around workout.

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