How to Hold Ukulele?

Just like in all instruments, it will not be possible for you to play your ukulele without holding it properly. This is why we wanted to prepare this article. You can easily learn the basics of holding your ukulele as a beginner. This will help you to play it properly and get the maximum performance from your practice sessions. So, let’s stop wasting time and dive into our guide to learn how to hold your instrument.

How to Properly Hold Ukulele?

While you are holding your ukulele with your right hand, you need to make sure that your elbow creates a perfect ninety degrees. Your left-hand thumb must be behind the neck of your instrument. Keep in mind that you need to keep your ukulele close to your chest. If you let your arms loose, your ukulele will fall towards your lap. You can still play it in this position, but this will only make things harder for you.


You also need to make sure that your right arm will be fully in front of your chest. Most beginners tend to shift their arms to their sides as they start playing. This will make things more challenging for you and you are going to put extra pressure on your shoulders. As a result, you may experience some shoulder aches, which can demotivate you from playing ukulele in the long run.

If you are a left-handed person, you just copy the same advice with the opposite arms. Regardless of your hand choice, you can play the ukulele without any challenge. It may take some time for you to learn this holding position, but you will soon develop your muscle memory and feel extra comfortable.

Things You Should Do While Holding Ukulele

Here are some important factors that you need to pay attention to while holding your ukulele:

  • Make your body relax and be as comfortable as you can.
  • Make sure that your left-hand thumb is always behind the neck.
  • Your instrument should be slightly upright all the time.

Things You Should Avoid While Holding Ukulele

If you avoid the following you can get the maximum performance while playing your ukulele:

  • Keep your ukulele high, do not make it slip to your lap.
  • Do not put pressure on your muscles, do not squeeze your instrument as you want to take its last breath.
  • Make sure that your elbow is in the right position. If you are a beginner, you will tend to put your elbow out.
  • Make sure you achieve ninety degrees with your elbow, and it will be completely in front of you but not your side.


If you follow all the above-mentioned instructions, you can easily start playing your ukulele. It may take time to get used to all of them. However, practicing often can help you to develop your muscle memories in a short time. Once you get used to them, you are going to get the maximum performance from your instrument. If you are a complete beginner, you can check out Ukulele Size Chart for Beginners guide to learn more about the right size for yourself.

Frequently Asked Questions

What is the proper way to hold a ukulele?

There are three main ways to hold a ukulele. The first and most common is the traditional standing ukulele position. The second is sitting on the floor with your legs crossed, leaning back with your hands behind you, and controlling your ukulele using the fingers of one hand. Lastly, there’s the seated position, which involves sitting on a chair, bench, or stool holding the ukulele between your legs.

Do you strum a ukulele with your dominant hand?

It is best to learn to play the ukulele with your dominant hand. Most people who play the instrument use their right hand for strumming. This is because most people are right-handed, which would make it easier if they were to use their dominant hand for playing.

How hard do you press down on ukulele strings?

Good ukulele players know that not all strings are the same. If you want a richer sound, you should press down on the strings more firmly than if you just want to play a song to accompany your voice. If you’re just starting out, start off with light pressure and gradually increase it so that you can get the best sound possible.