When learning the guitar we often make mistakes. Knowingly or unknowingly we carry some of those mistakes with us and get stuck to them.
This is when those mistakes becomes bad habits and that can make your learning process much longer and frustrating.
So, in the starting process of learning the guitar, it is important to know what exactly to practice so that you don’t practice any mistakes.
In my early days of learning the guitar, I remember making some major mistakes like not playing in time. When I realized it was too late and it took me several hours of practice to get on the track.
As the writer of this blog I don’t want you readers to make the same mistakes I did.
So, below I am going to mention 11 common mistakes that beginners make while learning the guitar and how to avoid them.
7 Mistakes One Makes When Learning The Guitar and How to Avoid Them
1. Not Playing in Time
Not playing in time is one of the biggest mistakes beginners make when learning the guitar. Playing in time is one of the most important factors that is going to decide how good a guitarist you will be. So, in the early days itself, you must avoid this mistake.
To avoid this mistake you can simply use a metronome or backing drum beat (track) in your practice sessions. If you browse the internet, you will find many interesting backing drum tracks that you can use.
If you don’t like to spend money on metronome then you can simply install one from Google Play Store. The one that I recommend is Pro Metronome. It is the best metronome app available for free.
If metronome and drum tracks bore you then you can simply use your foot to tap like a metronome. Do whatever you can but at the end of the day make sure you are on time.
Also Read – Finger Exercise to Practice Daily
2. Skipping Lessons Without Completing
It is important to practice the lesson in hand effectively before jumping to another. For example, if you are trying to nail a scale then make sure to practice it inside and out until you feel confident about it. Then only jump to another scale.
If in case you get frustrated in the process, take breaks to play something different but make sure to clear everything that is already on your plate before filling it again.
You don’t have to rush while practicing because if you do then you will be only adopting bad habits that can hinder your learning process.
What You Can Do
- Make sure that when you sit for practice, you have enough time to get through your lesson thoroughly.
- Try to choose a silent environment for your practice session. It will help you concentrate without any distractions.
3. Trying to Play Fast
It is one of the common mistakes most beginners make. They simply rush through things. You have to make sure that every note you play is crystal clear and is in time.
You also have to make sure that you are not applying pressure on the fretboard than necessary while playing the notes.
For example, let say you want to nail that melody or a solo, then the first thing you need to do is to divide that solo into smaller parts. Next, grab the metronome and set it to a slower BPM.
Start practicing the first part and make sure you are picking each note clearly and with minimal effort.
Once you feel comfortable with the speed, increase it until you reach the original tempo.
After you are done practicing all the parts, try to play the whole solo in a slower tempo then increase the speed once you feel comfortable.
This way you will nail that melody or solo in no time and with minimal effort.
4. Skipping Basic Theory
I can understand how boring is to learn the theory side of things but trust me after you learn the basics of guitar it will all be worth it.
Make sure to take out some time to learn the basics like chords family, chord formula, scale formula, basic chord progression, and learning all the notes of the fretboard.
5. Practicing On Cheap Guitar
Practicing in a cheap instrument can not only frustrate you but also hinder your learning process. So, if you ask me then, I will always recommend you to invest a little more and get yourself a good-sounding guitar.
Advantages of Good Sounding Guitar
- You stay motivated to play the guitar all the time because the crisp sound of a good sounding guitar makes things more fun.
- You use less pressure on the fretboard as the space between the strings and the neck is low in good guitars.
- You spend more time with your instrument.
So, when starting out to learn the guitar, I strongly recommend practicing on a good sounding guitar. If budget is a problem then it is better to wait for a while than to buy the wrong instrument.
6. Not Having A Practice Routine
This applies only if you are serious about learning guitar. To be able to play the guitar smoothly you need lots of practice and a routine can do wonders in keeping you on track.
A routine does nothing but keeps you motivated and tells you when and what to practice each day.
So, make sure to start following a practice routine in your early days so that it becomes a good habit in the future.
If you are confused about what to include in the routine then follow this simple and effective 20 mins guitar practice routine that I personally use.
20 mins Guitar Practice Routine ( Beginners )
- 5 mins – Chromatics, finger exercises, and stretching ( warm-up )
- 5 mins – Chord changing and strumming
- 5 mins – Scale practice
- 5 mins – Jamming and playing songs
You can obviously edit this routine and add whatever you want to practice for each day.
7. Learning without a Teacher
Nowadays it is very easy to learn an instrument, sitting at home all by yourself! Thanks to the internet.
But let me tell you that the feedback you get from a teacher can make your learning process much efficient and faster.
I myself never believed the idea of going to a teacher until the day I learnt the importance of it.
So, I highly recommend to grab those first lessons and guidance from a teacher, after you learn the basics you can always go by your own.
Benefits of learning guitar from a teacher
- A teacher corrects you instantly whenever you are wrong so that you don’t get stuck to the mistakes.
- You get one on one guidance which is irreplaceable with the lessons on the internet.
- A teacher teaches you stuff that you won’t find on any internet platform.
Besides these, one of the major mistakes beginners make is giving up too early. If you are reading this and want to give up on guitar then my personal suggestion will be to try a little more.
The 7 mistakes that I have mentioned above is a part of every guitarist’s journey. Making mistakes shows that we are trying and want to do better.
Most importantly one should believe in oneself.
So, if you think you are doing any of the guitar mistakes that are mentioned above then start avoiding and correcting them right away.