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Discussion Starter #1
I just started learning bar chords and the side of my pointer finger gets destroyed after trying to perfect them for a while. Does this part of my finger get hard like my finger tips or is it always just a pain to play them alot?

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First, I fear you have an action (strings too high) problem. How high are the strings over the first fret ? If you can place a dime (or even a nickel !), it is too high and need too much strenght and that causes pain to your index finger.
Not sure ? Place a capo at first fret and try a bar chord next fret : much easier ? It proves a need for adjustment.

You may also try to roll the index a bit backward : this adds a bit of strenght from the finger joints.
 
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Keep in mind that you don't have to have string to fret contact on all the strings with your index finger.

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Great advice guys!! The action I believe is set right. The bridge is almost to low now, as the 6th string will rattle if I strum it to hard. Pulling the bar towards my body as if bending the guitar in half seems to really help with a clean tone. I'll keep working on that. Excellent thank you everyone. I'm open to anymore advice as well! Thanks!

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Also the thumb can be in a variety of position relative to your chord forming. Do not force anything especially as someone said above . That can cause some serious long term pain
 

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What Hammerhands said. For what it's worth, when I was learning bar chords I learned, "I'd love to change the world"; all bar chords picked chromatically just moving up the neck, was great practice. (and yes, I am that old. :( )

You'll get it.
 

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My first guitar teacher had me do open bar chords up to the 10th fret and back, over and over again. With no cheating (pushing with the 2nd, 3rd and 4th fingers, only the first finger by itself).

I'd do a dozen of those up and down the neck and then a dozen E-form bar chords up and down the neck during every practice - so every day for a couple of years. By then, I had all the forearm strength and calluses I needed for the next 40 years (with regular playing). A small investment, IMO.
 
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