Learning to play a guitar can be a roller coaster experience. From the highs of learning your first chord to the lows of playing out of tune, you experience it all when learning to play. This article identifies seven useful tips for guitar beginners.
Understand Your Guitar's Peculiarities
It is a given that guitars are stringed instruments. But differences exist in the configuration of these strings across the different types of guitars that we have. For example, a bass guitar has only four strings. An electric guitar has six strings, the same as an acoustic guitar. Therefore, understanding the peculiarities of the type of guitar you have is important in the learning process.
Correctly Set Up the Guitar
The worst thing you can do as a beginner is to learn to play with a guitar that is not correctly set up. Before learning to strum the strings, you need to ensure that the guitar itself is properly set up. Often, newly bought guitars are out of tune and not ready for playing. You should assess the guitar first and tune the strings as necessary.
This process may be complicated for newbies, so we encourage contacting a professional to help with the set-up or get one of the best guitar tuners.
Learn to Grip the Guitar Properly
The first thing to learn with a guitar is the grip. Playing the guitar entails the simultaneous use of the two hands, which could take time to get used to. For correct positioning and grip, always try to make the guitar neck parallel to the ground at all times. Ideally, the guitar should sit comfortably on the right leg for right-handed guitarists and on the left leg for left-handed guitarists.
Strike a Balance Between Theory and Practice
You have likely read up on a lot of theories about guitar playing before laying your hands on a guitar. However, you need to strike a balance between theory and practice. Translating the ideas in your head to the fretboard should be prioritized. This is not to say theories are bad; quite the contrary. Theories allow you to understand the underlying principles that guide guitar playing. However, you need to strike a balance between the two. One will not replace the other.
There is no harm in doing things your own way. Once in a while, you can always try new things on the guitar. There are quite a few things you may stumble upon on your own.
Learn at Your Pace
As a beginner, you have heard friends talking about how they learned guitar within x months or years. While this may be good to assess the progress of your learning, it should have no bearing on your own progress. Individuals learn at different paces. If you seem to be learning at a slower pace, it doesn't mean you are not doing well; keep at it.
Patience is Key
We have all been in that position where our enthusiasm wanes after a few days or weeks because we are not seeing the desired result. This is often the case with guitar beginners. They want to master the guitar in a few months. It doesn't work that way. Learning guitar requires patience and dedication. Rome, as they say, was not built in a day; mastery of the guitar will not happen in a few weeks.
Also, you should never stop practicing. The saying that practice makes perfect may sound clichéd. However, you must keep practicing your guitar skills as a beginner. If you do not practice, you cannot attain perfection. There is no shortcut to it.
Finally, as your guitar skills get better, you should get familiar with other guitar accompaniments like capos and guitar amps. A capo, for example, allows you to play more songs while using fewer chords. A guitar amp helps to amplify sounds made by the guitar. These tips will set you on the right path in perfecting your guitar skills.