Welcome to our series of guitar tips and beginner guitar tricks to help you as a beginner guitar playing to improve your guitar playing.
1. Having persistence in your guitar playing when you first start
When you learn the guitar, you need to learn to be persistent at any stage of it. It is definitely important that you do this in the beginner, even if you think you are struggling, to keep going. And just be pig headed about it. Initially, when you first learn how to play, it’s not easy. You have to get your brain to work with your hands and fingers in a way that they have never done before, and it takes a bit of time to really get the hang of it.
So when you are having a bad day, a bad week or even a bad year where you feel like you haven’t played very much. Just keep going and that’s what makes all the the difference between people who can play the guitar and those who can’t.
2. Sitting in a way that helps you play comfortably and play easier when standing
A lot of beginner guitar players wonder how they should sit with the guitar, and they don’t know how to put their shoulders in the right place so their arms and hands are in the right position.
The other problem that we see often is that when they go from sitting down to standing up, their playing really suffers. If they spend all their time practising sitting down, and suddenly have to go do an open mic night playing standing up, they wonder why everything is that much harder and it doesn’t feel right again.
This really sucks, and we see a lot of advanced guitar players go through the same thing because they haven’t addressed this problem early on enough. So much so that it actually causes them a load of problems later down the line such as back pain, and tension, which slows down their playing.
So let’s going through what a typical guitar playing position is that beginner guitar players tend to take on. This is seen as the “rock and roll” sitting position where they have the guitar on the side with their strumming hand. If you are right handed, then it’s your right leg. The guitar is sitting horizontally for them with the headstock pointing slight forwards at times. What happens here is your body is then twisted to stop the guitar from moving, you are having the use your arm as well to keep it in place. All of this is adding extra tension and reducing your playing ability.
Also when you sit in this position and go to stand up, you will find that when standing up, your guitar is now across your body rather than on the side. The angle of the guitar is now diagonal as well. So when you go from playing sitting down to standing up, you have to re-practise where your hands have to be, your brain has to reconfigure where all the frets are and the string positions as well. That’s twice the amount of practise to make sure you are play as awesome in both position.
So let’s see how we can address this.
We are going to shift your guitar over to the other leg, so it’s sitting on your fretting side. If you are right handed, it’s now on your left leg. We are going to get a footstool to place under our left leg to prop it up, so your knee is higher up. If you don’t have a footstool, you can use some books instead.
Then sit your guitar diagonally so the headstock of the guitar is inline with your eyeline. Once you’ve got this, try sitting there with no hands supporting your guitar. Your guitar should be able to sit there, with your whole body comfortable, your back straight and no hands or arms supporting it.
Try practising this position a few minutes a day as it may seem strange as you first start.
You may recognise this position as what classical guitar players do, and although it may seem “less cool”. This position will save you so much problems later on down the line that it’s important that you are comfortable playing this guitar sitting position. You can also picture yourself in this position as the same position you would be if you were standing up as well.
If you want to achieve the same effort without a footstool, you can use a guitar strap. Make sure your guitar strap is short enough that It sits above the leg, and in the same position as you would have it when you are standing up. This is a great option if your guitar is relatively light, otherwise, if you do this with a heavy guitar, it can weigh down on your back. So have the footstool option so you can switch over when you feel your back is getting strained.
It’s important that you sit comfortably, and you are not in pain when you practise, so many beginner guitar players couch over their guitars, putting their back in misalignments that it’s important you avoid this to save yourself problems later down the line, whether it’s back pain or reducing your playing technique.
I hope this has been helpful for you. Continue reading to part two to find out what other beginner guitar tricks you can do to improve your guitar playing.
If you want specific information for you to advance quickly and effectively on the guitar then get in contact with us. We are here to provide you with the right plan, and the right teaching to ensure that whatever your goal is, you can reach it in the most effective way possible while having the most fun and enjoyment.
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