Many new guitarists often have a difficult time practicing. It may be that they’re overwhelmed with the number of chords they need to master or are simply feeling doubtful of themselves because of the lack of progress.
Having a great beginner-friendly guitar certainly does help in making practice sessions more productive and fun. In fact, it can even motivate you to pick it up even on days when you don’t feel like practicing at all.
If you’ve just started to learn to play the guitar, you can make your practice sessions more efficient and fulfilling by following these tips.
Make a schedule and stick to it.
Even if you have school, work or other commitments, you can surely allot at least 10 minutes for guitar practice. Take a look at your daily schedule and find time you can dedicate specifically for practice sessions. Be realistic about the time you have. Here’s a tip when making your practice schedule: A 10-minute daily practice is better than a 3-hour session on just one day of the week.
Have a mini goal for every practice session.
Every major goal has a set of mini goals you need to achieve. Mini goals for practice sessions can include something like ‘learning the E chord’ or ‘switching from the D chord to the A chord easily.’ Set your mini goals according to the amount of time you have for practice.
When you set smaller goals for your practice sessions, you will feel more accomplished at the end of the day. You will then become more motivated to practice so you can achieve other mini goals that add up to reaching your major goal.
You can monitor your progress by keeping a journal and writing down what you’ve accomplished for the day and how (like what exercises you did and if you used a metronome) and what you still need to work on. You can even make a more detailed practice log where you list down the number of sets and repetitions you made for each exercise and at what tempo. If you’re feeling down or doubtful, take a look at your journal or practice log and see how far you’ve come from Day 1.
Take slow baby steps.
We know you’re probably raring to go and memorize as many chords as you can in a day, but it’s more important to take things slow when you’re a beginner. Focus on getting things right the first time, because it can be harder to correct things like poor posture or grip later on. Concentrate on developing good technique when fretting and picking.
Starting slow also allows your fingers to develop the muscle memory needed to perform more complex drills and exercises. Again, focus on technique, not speed.
Taking a breather every now and then is also important when learning to play the guitar. Let your fingers rest, stretch your back and arm muscles and listen to your favorite songs or a music podcast. Listening to music is a great motivator, giving you the drive to improve as you go on your journey toward becoming a truly skilled guitarist. Have fun practicing!