Why You Aren’t Improving As A Guitar Player.

Why You Aren’t Improving As A Guitar Player

Every guitar player stops improving at some point. It literally happens to all of us. The thing that differentiates those who overcome it, is knowledge. Specifically knowledge gleaned from the best of those who came before us. Trust me, if your only means of learning is through your own experience, you will never realize your full potential. I’ve been there. I learn best through my own hands on experience. However, relying on that alone has seriously stunted my growth. Eventually I overcame that mindset, and I hope to help you avoid that altogether.

“Playing” Instead of “Practicing” 

Here’s the thing about playing guitar. Its a perishable skill. That means it requires upkeep to maintain your skill level. Most of us know and understand that. That’s why we try to play every day. The trouble is, the general act of playing guitar, is not the same as practicing. This is why you have to be deliberate about what you do with the time you devote to guitar.

Let’s take Herman Li for example. He is the Lead Guitarist for DragonForce. For those of you unfamiliar check out “Through the Fire and Flames“. Its hard to imagine, but Herman Li has to play that live, on tour, night after night. He is constantly practicing! In fact, he has a custom built strap mounted rig so he can walk around while practicing. If he doesn’t maintain that incredibly high level of skill, he’ll choke! His natural talent is stellar, but it wasn’t talent alone that made him the unicorn of guitar players. Its his talent combined with his willingness to practice more intensely than most if not all guitarists.

bd3415 df44df18faee49288c82c92f1b89cb85 mv2bd3415 df44df18faee49288c82c92f1b89cb85 mv2

When it comes to your practice time, have a schedule, a plan, a framework so you can see your skill level increase over time. Is there a solo you’ve always wanted to perfect, but just never truly devoted the time to?
Pick a 30 second section of that solo and devote the week to it. Slow it down to a snail’s pace if that is what it takes. Learn it super slow until you can play it without concentrating. Then increase the speed a little each day. Right down the BPM (Beats Per Minute) that you achieve every day. Do this until you are up to full speed.

By the end of that week you’ll be able to look back and see noticeable improvement. The real power of this method is when you finally realize that YOU CAN LEARN IT. Some of us have forgotten the rush that comes with learning something we thought was out of reach.

Rarely is anything out of reach. Its our lack of willingness to break it down into manageable pieces that makes it seem impossible. Just try it. Whether you are a beginner or a veteran, this will produce powerful results.


The Axe Dr.

Leave a Comment