| guitar lessons | guitar practice
Your guitar practice schedule should be fun, flexible and
I have set out a typical guitar practice schedule layout below
split into three main areas: (1) technique (2) repertoire (3)
(1) technique - in this section it's important to select whatever
is relevant to you guitar playing goals. When you are considering
what to work on in this area of your playing ask yourself the
Do you want to (a) learn a new blues lick? (b) a new scale (c)
strengthen your fourth (d) improve your sight reading etc.
Let's say you decide to learn a new scale, the important thing to
do next is ask yourself. "Why do I want to learn this scale?"
Keep working on a laser beam focus with your weekly guitar
practice schedule, refine your scale question by digging deeper,
do you need to know this scale (a) Help you improvise better? (b)
Are you certain this is the best scale to learn? (c) Who advised
you to study this scale? etc
By asking these questions before you invest hours of practice
time, you will save countless hours of wasted practice time and
If you can't answer these questions above which scales to
practice satisfactorily, I would strongly recommend not
practicing scale, move on to something else you can zero in on
and answer the most important question "why"!
Use the "why?" question on all sections of technique, you will be
amazed at the results.
How do we use these weekly guitar practice schedules? Simply
select one technical subject for each day. You will achieve the
best results if you plan the week in advance.
Let's say you want to work on three areas of guitar technique
this coming week:
1. Sight reading
Your weekly guitar practice schedule would look something like
Monday - Sight reading
Tuesday - Scales
Wednesday - Improvisation
Thursday - Sight reading
Friday - Scales
Saturday - Improvisation
The weekly guitar practice schedule is based on a six day week
with one day off, you may still want to play on the seventh day,
however take a break from the structured routine.
Important: remember, if you had planned your technical practice
you would know ... "what" sight reading specifically you were
going to work on - 5th position sight reading studies in the key
of G major...
and "why" you needed to practice these studies - because you
where having difficulty with your stage band reading at school.
Similarly you would not just be practicing any old scale, instead
you would know that you needed to work on the "A" Harmonic minor
and "why" you needed to learn this scale was to help you play a
solo by Carlos Santana in the key of "A".
Weekly Practice Schedule
Time Frame M
T W Th F S
Sight Reading ____ minutes
Ear Training ____ minutes
Scales ____ minutes
Arpeggios ____ minutes
Chords ____ minutes
Harmony & Theory ____ minutes
Improvisation ____ minutes
Interval Skips ____ minutes
Right Hand Picking ____ minutes
Note 1: During the "break" put the guitar down. Stand up,
stretch, go outside. etc
Note 2: Use a clock to time your time frames exactly.
Next section of your weekly guitar practice schedule would
include your repertoire practice.
In this section you would select the song(s) you wanted to work
on. Again asking yourself "why" do I need to know this song.
T W Th F S
You might ask, why do we need to "practice" listening to music,
after all we hear music all the time.
That's exactly why we need to practice "listening" to music on
differently level. Because we hear music almost everyday, there
is a tendency to not pay attention to the sounds.
It's a bit like fish being surrounded by water would discover the
water last. Similarly because we are surrounded by music we do
not generally take the time to allow the individual sound to make
a focused impression on our memory.
If your interest is rock music, select a recognized top rock
album and take particular note of:
(a) the form of the song
(b) the key / mode etc.
(c) the instrumentation
(d) the members of the band on the recording, who played bass?,
who was the guitar player? does he/she appear on other important
In this listening section of your weekly practice schedule you
are building a reference library, you are setting standards for
your own playing.
It's amazing how many guitar players will spend hours working on
the technical aspect of guitar playing and totally ignore the
listening part of their musical development.
A well balanced weekly guitar practice schedule includes all
three areas, technical, repertoire and listening.
How to Play Guitar
Rave Reviews for Express Guitar:
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Stephen J Reid
Guitarist & Musician
course teaches us how to learn, how to retain, and how to recall
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Sunshine Coast, Australia