How long does it take to learn the basics of guitar playing?
If you are starting out learning guitar you may be asking yourself just how long will this take me? To get to a reasonable level what is it going to take to feel competent as a guitar player?
As a professional guitar teacher, trainer and mentor this is a question that’s often asked or at least this question pops up in students heads at one stage or another. This article will help you understand and be prepared for what’s coming your way right now or further down the road of your guitar playing journey.
Now you might think that I would jump in straight away talking about practice but ultimately the most important piece of the puzzle is your mindset. This will be the fuel that will keep you moving forward and improve. Simply put if your mindset sucks, so will your guitar playing. Your mindset is your mental attitude towards anything you do in life. It’s the story that you tell yourself, the thoughts you have about your ability to succeed. When you have both a positive mental attitude, combined with determination and discipline you possess the power and momentum to achieve anything you set your mind to on the guitar.
When you have negative self talk, give up easily or are undisciplined it’s almost guaranteed that you will either quit and fail or take much longer to achieve the result you wanted. You are going to come up against challenges. Things are often going to take you longer than you anticipated, this is all part of the course of learning an instrument. The important overriding thing though is do you have the right attitude to continue on and conquer these challenges?
Finding the right teacher for you is very important to ensure that you reach your guitar playing goals. You need someone who has the experience, training and ability to take you from where you are now to the place where you want to end up. A good teacher will literally be able to foresee every challenge coming your way and know how to teach you and train you to master those skills. So do you research and don’t choose the nearest or cheapest teacher, invest in the best teacher you can find for what you want to learn. This way you will actually save money and the time it takes to get there because you will get the result much quicker. If you were building your dream house would you employ the cheapest builders with no real experience? No you want to find the best craftsmen in their specialised area with a proven track record of
happy customers. It’s no different with guitar teachers so make sure you select the best teacher for your style and check what past student have to say about them.
How much practice you do will make a very big difference to your progress. More importantly how and what you practice makes all the difference. Do you have a practice plan? Plan out exactly what and how long you need to practice certain skills each day. Many people waste time by playing the things that they already mastered. If feels good to do this because it sounds good! However also spending more time on things that you cannot play will ensure that you are always moving ahead and challenging your skills and knowledge. Favour practicing in small chinks of time each day. No-one ever learnt to play guitar really well but doing a bit at the weekend. You have to make it a discipline that you repeat daily to become a good guitar player.
Your experiences as a musician will also drastically effect you as a guitar player. Learning around others will help you to use your musical skills as well as giving you the support to keep practicing. It will keep you accountable for improving and also be a lot of fun in the process. Attending workshops, masterclasses such as the ones we hold at Kent Guitar School will give you greater insight into learning your instrument and motivate you to improve. See live music as much as possible, keep yourself hungry to learn and grow as a musician in your own right.
This article was written by Joe Bailey owner of Kent Guitar School near Meopham and Gravesend in North Kent, England. With over 20 years teaching experience our guitar lessons have helped literally hundreds of people learn guitar so if you are looking to learn the correct way and start seeing results in your playing contact us by visiting www.kentguitarschool.com