I use keyboard shortcuts for almost everything: moving between tabs, windows etc. YouTube has many shortcuts for play/pause, next, mute, etc. but those only apply when you have the focus on the video.

Are there shortcuts for those actions outside of the video focus?

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    I wish there was a solution to this. But in case anyone else stumbles upon this page I encourage you to try: youtube.com/leanback Commented Apr 13, 2014 at 4:43
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    Pretty nasty, but pressing Tab 4 times should give focus to the player, after which you can use the shortcut keys.
    – cmbuckley
    Commented Feb 13, 2015 at 0:09

5 Answers 5


Here's some:

f: fullscreen/normal
j: backward
k: play/pause
l: forward

  • 3
    This just lists the shortcuts that OP already knows. The question is about the focus - not the shortcuts. Commented Sep 8, 2017 at 2:01
  • OP knows about Youtube video player shortcuts. You are not answering the question. Commented Nov 3, 2021 at 7:18

Not a perfect solution, but the full screen shortcut (f) still works when the video is not in focus. Once you have made the video full screen, it is in focus and you can use the other shortcuts as normal.

If you don't want the video to be fullscreen, press f again (or esc) to exit full screen. The video will still be in focus.

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    It's not working for me... in fullscreen no focus on player. Using Chrome. Commented Mar 16, 2016 at 10:22
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    this doesn't appear to work anymore, 157239n's answer does Commented Aug 19, 2016 at 0:47
  • It worked on my Brave browser under Linux Lubuntu.
    – Stephane
    Commented Mar 19 at 20:44

A related one.

I am using Khan academy, which uses YouTube videos and show them in a dialog box.

I use below combination successfully, it saves a lot of time:

TAB key (focus youtube player works on dialog on khan academy website)

Then all keys like below will work:
    F (full screen) OR
    > (play faster)
    < (play slower)

Example try above shortcuts at below link:


To focus on or off an element on a webpage, you must use the TAB key.

Example using the up/down arrow keys:

  • Scroll up/down the page - tab out of the video reader
  • Raise or lower the volume - tab in the video reader

Also, using the F key focus on the video at any time.

  • To focus the player: Press i (miniplayer mode) two times
  • To unfocus the player: Press t (theater mode) two times

For a list of keyboard shortcuts, see the "Keyboard shortcuts" help button within the ⋮ (three vertical dots) button at the top right of the page. Most shortcuts also work when the player doesn't have focus.

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