Do you practice the same things over and over again, the exact same way with no variation? Try changing up your practice sessions by finding new and fun ways to do the same things that you want to do. Keep your brain engaged at all times while you are practicing. You will find many different ways to practice and improve your ability to play guitar. You will also enjoy practicing and stay inspired to keep improving your guitar playing.
If you are like a lot of guitar players you likely find yourself practicing the same things over and over again and getting bored by the things you practice. This is very common and it is completely understandable why you would get frustrated by it.
There are lots of things that you can do to keep your practice sessions fun and fresh. This article is going to show a few way that you can vary your practice routines and keep things exciting.
Using a looper
If you have a loop pedal, you can come up with new ways to practice all the time. You can work on things like: rhythm, lead, texture, creativity and harmony. Each category also has sub categories that you can include. For example:
- Matching a rhythm perfectly
- Counter rhythms
- Poly rhythms
- Chord inversion
- Chord substitution
- Practice improvising
- Ear training (seeing how each note functions over each chord)
- Playing modes
The above listed are but some of the examples of things that you can do with a loop pedal to improve your guitar playing. It is also a ton of fun and you can spend hours doing so without even realizing that you are doing it.
A sequence is a fragment of a scale (or in some cases an entire scale) that you play in a certain order and you can also do it over many octaves. An example of a sequence would be to play the first 6 notes of the major scale on the Low E and A strings. You can then repeat the same notes (in the same order) an octave higher on the D and G strings. You would repeat the same sequence of notes on the B and High E strings. You can mix up the order of the notes any way you want. The key is to keep changing the sequences up once you get used to them. You want to keep your brain engaged at all times when you are practicing.
Challenging yourself to name the notes that you are playing is also a lot of fun. You could write out a chord progression and challenge yourself to play this chord progression in different areas of the neck. The challenging part of this at first is being able to move from chord to chord without thinking about it. If you combine this with using your looper, you will get a great sense of how to layer different guitars and how they sound together. You can also use your scales in the same way- finding the notes for the scale(s) in different areas of the guitar neck.
Another challenge for this is to play a scale or more than one scale on one string. This is a lot of fun to do but also shows you the possibilities that exist for you on one string. Now multiply that by 6 and you see that you will have a lot of choices available to you.
These are a few ways to add some variation to your practice routine and break you out of your habits and add some fun to your practice time.
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