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Planning your guitar practice - setting up your goals

Rating: 3 user(s) have rated this lesson Average rating: 5.0 Posted by: DanielKaczmarczyk, on May 26,2012, in category Correct Practice Views: this lesson has been read 2853 times
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A|-----Planning your practice--------
E|-----Long term & short term goals--

One of the biggest questions when it comes to practicing is “what to practice?”. The answer is simple : what you want. You are the artist, and it’s your decision what style you want to use in your playing. When you’re setting up your own guitar practice routine as a rookie player - mind these things (these are only my suggestions) :

  1. Music theory
    • Intervals
    • Scales
    • Chords, chord progressions
    • Harmony
    • Improvising
  2. Ear training
    • Recognizing chords by ear
    • Recognizing intervals by ear
    • Transcribing music
    • Singing scales/melodies
  3. Right hand techniques (picking hand)
    • Picking
      • alternate
      • sweep picking
      • string skipping
      • tremolo picking
  4. Left hand techniques
    • Legato techniques
      • Hammer-on
      • Pull-off
      • Slide
    • String bending
    • Harmonics
      • Natural
      • Pinch harmonics
    • Strumming
    • Tapping (right hand is also involved)
  5. Building up repertoire
  6. Writing your own songs

And that’s just a top of the iceberg of things you can practice. Have it in mind that they are only my suggestions, that fit MY style of playing guitar. The problem is that it’s WAY TOO MUCH to do at once. This is why setting up goals is for.

*** Long term goals.

Long term goals are the goals that can be achieved in more than a half a year, just like sweep picking. This is a very complex technique which requires a lot of practicing. This is a great example of setting a long term goal. But it can be depressing that you practice for over three months or so, and the effect is not too good... The depression can be easily avoided by using short term goals.

*** Short term goals

Your long term goal is learning to sweep. And it can take around half a year. So, lets’ divide it into a shorter goals! Just like mastering only one sweeping exercise weekly. This is very motivating. After four weeks you should sweep four arpeggios - that means you can write a simple solo with it.

*** Summary.

So, I’m sure that you can see the method of setting up long term goals and short term goals. In this way you can practice more than sweeping at once. It’s easier to carry one brick after another, rather than moving the whole wall. :)

I wish you best with your guitar practice. Remember - divide and conquer ! It’s easier than you can think, just needs lot of systematic work. So, take your goals and have a practice ! Daniel Kaczmarczyk,

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