More about your practice routine
I have talked about the importance of having a practice routine and what you can do to create one and get into a smooth flow when learning the guitar. But then I realized that creating a routine is another kind of a “big deal” unless you are only a Rockstar who wakes up everyday and only plays the guitar for the rest of the day… if you are, lucky you! I wish I could only do that in my day to day life.
Anyway, for most of us here who have an everyday job, wife-husband, kids, bills to pay and a few minutes to breathe, we need to focus on organizing our practice routine if we want to get somewhere with our guitar playing.
So first build your practice routine around your needs, basically the “what to learn” and the “when to do it”, then organize your routine, so the “how-to” which is not an easy thing either.
So how to organize your routine?
This can be achieved by 4 different concepts.
1. How much free time you have vs. how much time you want to practice?
They might sound the same but they are not. Let’s say that you have 5 hours for yourself everyday – ‘for yourself’ means that you don’t have to work, you don’t have kids to take care of, you don’t have to do something, these 5 hours are yours and only yours. Some of you might have way less than that, some of you might have heaps more… but then the question is, how much time of that you wanna invest practicing the guitar? Perhaps you arrive home after a long work routine and the only thing you want to do is to sit down on the couch and watch T.V. Do you get the idea?
I know that I want to learn to play the guitar badly, but sometimes the daily work-life routine does not allow me, as by the end of the day, when I have free time, I am tired as and the only thing I want to do is chill out.
So again, the question is – How much time do you want to practice daily? If you ask me, I know that the ideal would be 5 to 6 hours, okay but that’s a lot,. Putting that into a normal life the minimum I would say is 1 hour. Again, this time depends on your free time vs. your willing time – Solve this matter first as it is the foundation of everything.
2. What does your playing need?
We have talked about this point which is a very important one too. You have to pick the things you want to practice, WISELY! Think about what your playing is lacking, or what you feel your playing needs, this can be a lot of things of course, but write them down and choose the easiest to the hardest for focus on
3. Write your routine down and put it on your wall.
Yes kids, just like in school, if you have a blackboard even better. Don’t forget that before you start with your practice routine, warming up is really important. What do you need to write down?
– Time for practicing, e.g. 6 to 8pm, 8.30 to 9am, etc.
– Warm up time
– Topics/exercises to practice by day
– How much time for each exercise, e.g. warm up, 10 mins. Scales, 20 mins. etc.
4. Track your progress.
Think about your practice routine as if it was a company. How is the company going, How are the sales going? Are you reaching your goals? If you write everything down, you will be able to check if your playing is reflecting what’s written on paper.
Again, do not forget to organize your routine starting with WARMING UP, if you need help with this, check out our warm up post.
Another important thing is to ALWAYS PRACTICE WITH A METRONOME.
I really hope this helps you to organize your routine. If you have built it, we would love to know how your paying is going as well as what your routine looks like.
Learn more about Luis Tovar on his Google profile.