Top Ten Guitar Tips

  1. Practice with a metronome: This may be a challenge in the beginning but over time you will see the benefits. It will train your sense of rhythm and timing. For beginners, this is also a good way to show your progress with regards to how fast you play. You can measure this using the BPM (beats per minute).
  2. Practice consistently: The most productive way of practising any musical instrument is to practice consistently. Rather than practice for a large amount of time once-off, practice as much as possible as frequently as possible. Consistency pays off.
  3. Finger placement: Place your finger as close as possible to the fret above. This will make it easier on your fingers as you will not have to press as hard to get the note to sound.
  4. Start slow: The best way to learn any new part on the guitar is to perfect it playing as slowly as you need to, then you can speed it up.
  5. Alternate picking: When learning picking licks, it is important to focus on alternate picking instead of just picking all downstrokes. A general rule that you could follow to work out the correct picking pattern is to pick towards the next note that will be played.
  6. Use correct fingering: Pay attention to the correct fingering when playing pieces. Do not only focus on playing the correct notes, focus on how you are playing them. If you are struggling to figure this out by yourself, you can do online research or ask your teacher for help.
  7. Do not press too hard: Not only will this unnecessarily hurt your fingers but it will also affect the sound. When the notes are pushed too hard, they will sound slightly sharp and out of tune.
  8. Do not rush the basics: When you start learning to play the guitar, it is important not to rush through the basics. If you do this, you will face difficulties with the more advanced stuff later.
  9. Train your ears: When learning new songs it is easy to find the chords or tabs online. However; it may be to your benefit to develop your ear skills to be able to: identify chords, identify intervals and your ability to identify different effects and techniques used.
  10. Have fun with it: It is important to enjoy your playing so that you can stay motivated and get excited to practice your craft.