How to Play Ukulele if You are Left-Handed?

Right-handed people are lucky in the sense that most musical instruments like guitars and banjos are designed for them. But the world is not full of right-handed people, is it? So if you are a lefty who always wished to play the uke, here’s the good news for you. There are many methods that you can try in order to start practicing it. Here are some methods that you can try out.

How to Play Ukulele if You are Left-Handed?

You need to consider the size of the ukulele first if you’re a beginner. You have to figure out which one would be the most comfortable for you to play.

Basically, there are 4 primary options for you, so do a thorough research before you spend your money on getting one. Soprano is the smallest one, then Concert, Tenor and lastly Baritone.

1. Puzzled about which one to get?

If you have small hands then try out the Soprano or the Concert. As the Tenor one has a more solid proof sound, maximum professional or advanced players prefer them.

And if you have some experience of playing the guitar then the Baritone is the perfect one out of these four for you. Those of you who played the guitar can compare how the lower 4 strings are similar to that of a ukulele.

2. Holding a Ukulele in your left-hand

In order to play smoothly, you must make sure that you are holding the ukulele properly. You can keep it close to your chest and make a strong grip at the neck with your right hand. Try bending or curving your left arm near the elbow,  to make sure you’re supporting it properly. For a proper kind of note access, you must restring the uke. 

3. Playing on a regular one

This is of course upto you. If you think you can hold one and be comfortable playing it, then go ahead and try it out! You can look for videos or tutorials on YouTube how lefties play a right-handed uke. Ask your friends if they can help you out. If you join a ukulele club, the teacher will definitely teach you how you can hold and stroke the strings like a right-handed person. Stop thinking that this is something impossible to do so. So test it and find out the results!

4. Flip, restring and tune it!

Restringing a regular uke seems like a tough job, but it isn’t. You can look for tutorials on how to do it. Once you do so, you will see no big difference between a left and a right handed player. One problem you might face is with the installations like the volume controls or the cutaway.

After you flip the uke, they might be on the wrong side and that will be problematic for you. To fix this you need to make sure that the saddle and the bridge is reversed properly as well.

Let’s try not flipping the uke strings this time!

If you don’t want to go through all the hassle of flipping your instrument’s strings, then don’t put yourself in so much trouble. If musicians can play guitars using their left hands, without changing anything in it, then so can you.

It can be done with a guitar and also with an ukulele. All you need is more effort. It will obviously take some time to get used to it. So don’t get demotivated if it doesn’t seem easy going at first. If you go through the tutorials, you will get accustomed to how all the control plates and the cutaways functions. 

Best left-handed ukuleles

As there are a lot of options out there in this category, searching the perfect instrument for yourself can be quite a challenge. The quality of the ukulele depends on price as well. If you want your wooden buddy to last longer and make beautiful music, then you should loosen the purse strings a bit and get a good one. If you want to be fully content with your purchase then take a look at these following left-handed ukulele brand names.

  1. Concert Ukulele~Oscar Schmidt OU2LH Left-Handed Mahogany
  2. Concert Ukulele~Luna Mahogany Tattoo lefty
  3. Caramel CC100L Left Handed Ukulele
  4. Soprano Ukulele~Mahalo’s Kahiko Plus Series Left-Handed 
  5.  Concert Ukulele~Left Hand Oscar Schmidt OU5LH, All Koa with hard case

Some additional advice for beginner left-handed players

  1. Like all other instruments, the components that are used to make the ukulele matters, as well as the materials. For beginner players, wood that is laminated works perfectly. Strings that have good quality will sound better than the ones that don’t. So make sure you buy from a nice brand. 
  2. You should try out some sizes, choose the one which will feel comfy. Afterall, the ukulele should be customized according to the one who will carry and play it. 
  3. Try to avoid the cheap ukuleles. Their quality will make your whole experience miserable. Visit your local stores and search online as well. There is a range of prices for you to choose from. You can try purchasing second hand uke too. You can get a good ukulele for a price less than 200 dollars. And if you buy an expensive one, then change your mind about it, you can always sell it online. Therefore, it’s better if you avoid buying cheap ones. 

Conclusion

Purchasing a lefty uke or playing one, both might seem like arduous tasks. But it isn’t. All you need to do is try different methods and pick the one which suits you. No one said that you have to stick to a particular method. Be flexible about attempting new methods. Once you figure it out, it will be the best experience ever! What truly matters is whether you are having fun and how playing a ukulele makes you happy.

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