Piano Fingering - Guide to Piano Finger Placement

Learn Where Your Fingers Go on the Piano Keyboard

Piano fingering
Image © Brandy Kraemer, 2015

What Is Piano Fingering?

  • Piano fingering refers to finger placement on the piano keyboard and the hand techniques used to play the piano.
  • Fingered piano music marks each note with a number that corresponds to one of the five fingers.

 

Reading Fingered Piano Music

You will see numbers 1-5 written above or below notes in scales and songs. These numbers correspond to your five fingers and tell you which finger presses which key.

Finger numbering for both hands goes as follows:

Thumb: 1
Index Finger: 2
Middle Finger: 3
Ring Finger: 4
Pinky Finger: 5

You’ll notice that the fingering technique is often the same for both hands. Look at the staves, above: The same fingers play the same notes in both triad scales, but the numbers are inverted.
 

Fingered Practice Scales

Good fingering is a valuable skill to have as a pianist. When you practice piano fingering, you’re enabling your fingers to execute new techniques, master awkward positions, and exercise speed and flexibility. Practicing fingering may seem tedious at first, but stick with it; your fingers will adjust quickly.

 

Continue This Lesson:

Notes of the Piano            | ► Left Hand Piano Fingering
                                               | ► Piano Chords With Fingering
 

 

Beginner Piano Lessons

 ▪  The Piano Keyboard Layout
 ▪  The Black Piano Keys
 ▪  Finding Middle C on the Piano
 ▪  Find Middle C on Electric Keyboards
 ▪  Diminished Chords & Dissonance
 

Reading Piano Music

 ▪  Sheet Music Symbol Library
 ▪  How to Read Piano Notation
 ▪  Memorize the Staff Notes
 ▪  Illustrated Piano Chords
 ▪  Musical Quizzes & Tests
 

Piano Care & Maintenance

 ▪  Best Piano Room Conditions
 ▪  How to Clean Your Piano
 ▪  Safely Whiten Your Piano Keys
 ▪  Signs of Piano Damage
 ▪  When To Tune Your Piano
 

Getting Started on Keyboard Instruments

 ▪  Playing Piano vs. Electric Keyboard
 ▪  How to Sit at the Piano
 ▪  Buying a Used Piano

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Kraemer, Brandy. "Piano Fingering - Guide to Piano Finger Placement." ThoughtCo, Jun. 17, 2017, thoughtco.com/piano-fingering-placement-guide-2701363. Kraemer, Brandy. (2017, June 17). Piano Fingering - Guide to Piano Finger Placement. Retrieved from https://www.thoughtco.com/piano-fingering-placement-guide-2701363 Kraemer, Brandy. "Piano Fingering - Guide to Piano Finger Placement." ThoughtCo. https://www.thoughtco.com/piano-fingering-placement-guide-2701363 (accessed December 11, 2017).