EDIT: I realize now that these shortcuts actually work in EDIT mode, but I want to know about POSE mode.

I'm trying to find shortcuts to make selecting bones in pose mode faster. Sometimes I want to select a few bones in a bone chain (like all the bones in the spine of the character, or all the bones in a finger), and I have to select each bone individually, which is fine but I wonder if there are shortcuts to make these things faster.

I know you can CTRL+L to select all linked bones, which is something. But a lot of times you don't want ALL the linked bones, just the ones down the chain (or up the chain), or a few bones in the middle of the chain... So I wonder if there is a way so select all linked bones between two bones, like you can select the shortest path between edges in edit mode by ctrl+clicking. Or maybe something like pressing the "+" sign would select one more bone down the chain.

Are there any shortcuts like that to make it easier and faster to select bones in pose mode?

  • $\begingroup$ to add to Marty's answer, Ctrl + allows to select the next bone in a chain $\endgroup$
    – moonboots
    Sep 14, 2021 at 15:08
  • $\begingroup$ Haven't you just answered your own question? Select one bone, the CTRL+click the other one and all bones between will be selected. Ctrl+Numpad+ to select more, Shift+] to select the child. Explore the Select menu. There are more shortcuts to select the parent, all children, siblings, etc. $\endgroup$
    – Blunder
    Sep 14, 2021 at 15:09
  • $\begingroup$ Weird, I tried that and it didn't work. $\endgroup$ Sep 14, 2021 at 18:58
  • $\begingroup$ Oh, I think I know the problem. These shortcuts work in EDIT mode, but I meant to ask for the same type of shortcut in POSE mode. I actually mentioned that in the end of my question but I guess I didn't put enough emphasis on it. I'll edit it to make it clearer $\endgroup$ Sep 14, 2021 at 18:59
  • $\begingroup$ ah, I see. Pose mode is the keyword. Thanks for the clarification. Indeed Ctrl+click and several other shortcuts don't work in this mode. $\endgroup$
    – Blunder
    Sep 14, 2021 at 19:10

1 Answer 1


Okay, found it: In pose mode, the shortcut to select the next bone in the chain (child) is ]. To select the previous bone (parent): [.

Shift + [ or ] will extend the selection in each direction.

  • 1
    $\begingroup$ The downside is that you need an English keyboard layout, otherwise the "]" and "[" keys might not work. But you can change the keyboard shortcut in the settings. $\endgroup$
    – Blunder
    Sep 14, 2021 at 19:14
  • $\begingroup$ Yes, I'm from Brazil so the keys in my actual keyboard are not exactly the brackets, but are close enough to be easy to find. I'm used to that sort of thing. $\endgroup$ Sep 14, 2021 at 21:30

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