by George Loveridge | 4,4 / 5,0 | Approximate reading time: 5 Minutes
Practise Techniques for Improving as a Guitarist

Practise Techniques for Improving as a Guitarist  ·  Source:


Wouldn’t it be great to just pick up your guitar and shred, right? At a beginner level, it can be hard to know where to start. However, an effective and thorough practise schedule will help you get to where you want to be. Here are some practise techniques for improving as a guitarist. 


Practise Techniques for Improving as a Guitarist

We’ve always been told to practise as much as possible. Mostly, it’s a dull and tedious prospect. Occasionally, it can be fun to play through your favourite tracks. Although, what you need is a solid way to improve on core techniques and skills. Use our rundown of practise techniques, and you should see signs of improvement in no time.


Firstly, let’s get the ‘worst’ bit out of the way. For beginners, it feels as though there’s nothing worse than leaning scales. However, scales are the foundation of some of the best guitar solos in the world. Furthermore, they help with finger dexterity and muscle memory.

A great practise technique is to learn the A blues scale. Related to the pentatonic scale, the blues scale consists of out-of-key notes; blue notes. The blue note is a flattened fifth. This creates some dissonance but is a key attribute of blues music.

Therefore, in our key of Am, our blue note is Eb, which is one semi-tone flat of the 5th degree, E, in the key of Am.

A Blues Scale

This is a useful practice technique as it is easy to remember and you can learn it at any stage. Additionally, these notes alone can be played over the majority of Am guitar backing tracks.


When you’ve got to grips with it, why not try and play it over this backing track?

Chord Progressions: Practise Techniques

Going through and switching up your chord progressions is a fantastic practise technique for improving as a guitarist.

If you’re new to things, chances are, you’ll just be comfortable with a few basic chords. We’re not necessarily interested in the chords, but the order in which you play them.

Take ‘Zombie‘ by The Cranberries, a classic mid-90s rock anthem that isn’t by Oasis! This practise technique involves taking the original chord progression of a record and switching it up.

Em, C, G & are the chords that we’ve got to work with. By changing the order of this progression, you’ll be altering the muscle memory in your hand, and ultimately speeding up your chord changes. A practise technique that solves petty problems effectively is something to stick by.

Here are some variations of the same chords:

Chord Progressions – Practise Techniques for Improving as a Guitarist

Metronomes: Practise Techniques

This is where we get to the really dedicated and sophisticated part of practise techniques. Metronomes aim to keep us playing in time. By practising to a click, you’ll undoubtedly improve as a guitarist.

So, how do we use one? It’s likely that you’ll want to practise in 4/4, four beats to a bar. A metronome will make an audible ‘click‘, notifying you of each beat. Sometimes, the 4th beat will be stressed, with a different click. Don’t worry, this just lets you know where to start.

A steady moderate tempo would be 120bpm, an ideal starting point. If you’re struggling with something, be that a specific riff or technique, it’s good to use a metronome. By playing along to a precise click, you’ll be accurately improving your ability to play the guitar.

Jam Sessions

Practising on your own is great! No distractions, play as loud and as long as you like, no pressure. Fantastic! However, going through some practise techniques with other musicians can be very beneficial and rewarding.

Guitarists have it easy when it comes to jam sessions. One person plays the backing, the other plays the lead. A simplistic duet. Moreover, you can play the pieces of music that you’re struggling with in front of a friend or fellow guitarist. Positive, negative or constructive, you’re guaranteed some feedback.

Furthermore, playing in a band is a fun way to practice your skills as a guitarist whilst enjoying yourself at the same time. Turning guitar practise into a new favourite pastime.


How often you practice is significant for improving as a guitarist. We need to find that sweet spot between being under-rehearsed or being overworked.

Surely, there is no such thing as too much practice? Well, yes! With anything in life, moderation is key. In Contrast, too little practice will leave you struggling to reach your goals.

Ideally, you should aim to work on a key focus area for around 15-20 minutes each day. For instance, that could be the Blues scale that we looked at earlier. Likewise, make sure you take a rest period; allow your brain to reset. There’s nothing worse than getting overly stimulated and frustrated over a diminutive guitar technique. Rest periods can last approximately the same time as the dedicated rehearsal period. A good balance is important.

Practise Techniques

Although limited, this list of practise techniques should help you on your way to becoming a better guitarist. Sure, there are other techniques and methods out there to refine your riffs. However, at a beginner level, you can’t go too far wrong by deciding on what works for you, while covering some key aspects of guitar playing. How do you like to practise your techniques?

Why not take a digital browse of these TAB guitar books? One for beginners, and the other for when you’ve got to grips with the basics.

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Practise Techniques for Improving as a Guitarist

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One response to “Practise Techniques for Improving as a Guitarist”

    Terry says:

    thanks you just reassured me that I was on the right track.

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