How to Practice Guitar
Because If You Don't Know How To Practice, You'll Never Know If You're Doing It Right!
Killing In The Name Of ... Practice?
Ever wanted to kill someone for using the phrase "practice makes perfect"?
Listen, then, take your deep breath now.
Alright. Guitars aren't any different. We (the guitar playing community) wish it weren't so.
Practice makes perfect.
It's a must. A no-questions-asked detail. It's a footnote to the whole thing that you can't ignore.
You gotta practice.
And, as far as I'm concerned, there's really only two ways to go about practicing. One is to go on your own and make your own schedule. Lead your own way.
The second is to use our program, StringNinja. Especially for a hard question like "how to practice" it just simply removes ALL the stress from the situation.
How? Because it breaks down the whole practice endeavor for you. Day by day, it tells you what to do. How to get better. All you have to do is listen, abide and rock!
The How To How To Question
Right, so here's where you ask me how to practice?
Because it's not like homework. There's no teacher, no grades. Just you and a goal.
The sad truth is, most people don't know how to practice their guitar.
So here's the lowdown on how to practice, especially if you're a beginner.
At this point, your skills aren't tremendous. You're not tearing up Madison Square Garden. That's okay though, anyone who's ever done that has had to practice first!
So, just for now, don't think of practice as refinement. Don't think of it as training.
Instead, think of as problem solving.
Yes, that's right. Practice, for you RIGHT NOW, is addressing your problem spots and working to fix them.
What's the hardest chord you know? Play it. Play the next hardest one immediately after. Play a chord you don't know next.
Hard? Okay. But why is it hard? Maybe you can't get your fingers down at the same time -- you're not getting the notes at the same time.
Problem spots. That's your first practice goal. Learn 'em, address 'em, fix 'em. Your classic see, do, win situation. Karate kid style.
And here's a good tip to help with that. Keep your guitar out in the open. Don't put it and its stand away in the closet or the basement. Keep it close and available.
That way, if you have 5 extra minutes one day, you can pick it up and jam. That short session, even, will help tremendously -- especially for problem spots. With that 5 minutes you can get in some good, spontaneous practice with problems spots like Barre Chords or mastering how to change chords.
How Calendars Make Rockstars
You'll need some extra help to get you there though.
So, here's what you gotta do; make a schedule. Plan it out. You won't have to ask yourself if it's the right time to practice - you'll know.
And don't even try and tell me that Karate Kid didn't use a schedule. You know Mr. Miagi was in the back with a calendar crossing off dates. You know it!
Schedules aren't cool. We get that. But neither are quitters. Neither are kids who buys guitars so they can sit in the corner.
There are some really good ways to keep your practice schedule or "diet". For one, you can get a focus helper -- something like a mobile phone applications like this one. With StringNinja, we made our own, "in-house" app to help you focus and be productive. THAT's really the best way.
And not only that but StringNinja breaks down, with videos and other methods, what you should be playing WHEN. It's a calendar built for learning, improving and mastering guitar.
Either way, StringNinja or not, keep a schedule and calendar. It'll help you in so many ways.
Because when your crush comes over and sees it and asks you to play, you can't just tell say your fingers hurt. That won't get you a kiss, I promise.
Make a practice schedule and stick to it. No excuses. That will get you through those problem spots faster than you can say "schedule" (in a British accent!).
Those are the very BASICS of how to practice. They'll get you partially to the next step. But you don't want partial. You wanna learn guitar fast and rock hard!
You're gonna want to learn how to practice better, once you learn how to practice - finger techniques, better picking, learning how to play whole songs! All that good stuff.
If you want to handle practicing on your own, you gotta check out our free five day course -- it's the only way you'll make it through alive!
Video Guitar Tips
Fret Hand Technique
Alternate picking is essential to practice early! More info on String Ninja...