Learning how to play guitar can be pretty challenging. It takes plenty of years to polish your skills. This is why all of us need to use absolutely every advantage that we can and make the most out of our practice time. It’s rarely talked about in the music world, but there are several ways to learn guitar quicker than ever. In this article, we will take a look at everything you can do to learn guitar fast!
11 Tips on How to Learn Guitar Fast
1. Invest in a Guitar That Matches Your Style
The first and foremost tip to learn guitar fast is to purchase a guitar that matches your style. Ideally, you should try out both acoustic and electric guitars. Acoustic guitars can either be nylon-stringed or steel-stringed. If you wish to learn guitar fast, an acoustic, nylon-stringed guitar might be the better option. This is because these guitars are simpler to learn and fairly easy on the fingers.
2. Learn the Fundamental Chords
If you wish to learn guitar fast, you need to have a solid understanding of the fundamental guitar chords. Guitars generally have two kinds of chords – barre and open. In open chords, every string is allowed to vibrate freely, whereas, in barre chords, each string needs to be pressed together on the same fret. At the start of your guitar-learning journey, you should only focus on the open chords. Proceed to the other chords only when you’ve mastered the open ones.
3. Practice Strumming
After you’ve mastered the elementary chords, your next step is to learn how to strum them to produce music. One thing you need to remember before you start strumming is that nylon-stringed guitars are better-suited to play folk or classical music, while steel-stringed guitars are better for playing country or rock music.
Now start strumming your guitar with the aim to produce a consistent rhythm.
4. Use Several Different Media Sources
A recent research reveals that whenever you’re trying to learn something new, using several different media sources to recall information can be incredibly useful. Thus, if you wish to learn guitar fast, utilizing various visual or audio sources to trigger your memory would surely be a great place to start. Therefore, write down every note, repeat it frequently, and play it as much as you possibly can. This will allow you to retain information for a longer period.
5. Use Mnemonics to Speed Up Learning
An excellent strategy to learn guitar fast is to use mnemonics to memorize chords, notes, and strings. Mnemonics largely use imagery, encoding, and cures to enable swift learning and information recall. Let’s use an example to explain our point. Assume that the chords you have to recall are B, C, E, and F. Rather than learning them as separate alphabets, you can simply learn ‘Big Cat Eats Fish.’ This way, you can learn this chord pattern for quite a while.
6. Create a Nice Environment for Practicing
If you wish to learn how to play guitar fast, you’ll need to find the right spot to practice. Pick a room that receives plenty of sunlight. Apart from the lighting, you also need to pay attention to the temperature of the room. People generally learn best in environments between 68°F and 74°F. Therefore, it’s important to keep an eye on the air conditioning or thermostat unit you use and not let your room get too cold or too hot.
Also, ensure that it’s either acoustically insulated or has extremely little noise entering inside. Set up your equipment properly in this space and keep the room clean and neat. This cozy and clutter-free environment is going to help you improve your focus and hence, learn to play guitar more quickly.
7. Know Your Chronotype and Practice Accordingly
Just like the room where you intend to practice should be in line with your requirements, the time when you practice should also match with your internal body clock. According to research conducted by the University of Toronto, people tend to learn best within their chronotype, i.e., their waking/sleeping period. So pick a chronotype in which your activity levels are at the highest. This can either be late at night or early morning. Make sure that you practice in this period each and every day.
8. Progress Slowly and Gradually
In your hurry to learn guitar fast, don’t push your boundaries way beyond your ability and capacity. The best thing is to start slow and increase your learning speed steadily. Take small steps in terms of both effort and time.
Nevertheless, ensure that you stay consistent in your efforts. Your determination and continuity are the two key factors that will help you master this instrument.
9. Test Yourself
When trying to learn guitar, don’t forget to review your progress regularly. Choose quantifiable and measurable performance indicators on which you easily check and evaluate your growth. For example, you can assess your improvement on factors such as repertoire, string accuracy, metronome, finger-picking pattern, or speed. Based on the results you get, you can determine which areas you need to work on more and which ones you’ve become good at.
10. Start Meditating
This tip might not seem related to learning guitar but trust us, it is a great way to hone your skill. Meditation reduces anxiety, lowers stress levels, and enhances brain efficiency. It connects your mind and your body, boosts your creativity, and increases your attention span. As a result, your technical proficiency increases, and you become more capable of learning how to play guitar fast.
11. Chew Gum
You might not believe it, but those small breath fresheners can actually help you in playing the guitar. According to a study conducted by Baylor College of Medicine in 2009, there is a positive impact of chewing gum on academic performance as it increases blood flow to stimulate the brain.
Researchers have even discovered that chewing gum can improve alertness, relieve anxiety, and reduce stress. All of this can help you learn guitar fast!
Last Few Words
And there you go, some bite-sized information to help you as you try to learn guitar fast. Just channel the passion you’ve got, create a vision, and go for it! Soon, you’ll also be part of the legion of guitarists.
Eduardo Perez is a multi-instrumentalist with over 20 years of experience playing instruments such as piano, guitar, ukulele, and bass. Having arranged songs and produced music in a recording studio, he has a wealth of knowledge to share about analyzing songs, composing, and producing. Currently pursuing a Bachelor of Arts degree in Interdisciplinary Musical Studies at Berklee College School of Music. Featured on Entrepreneur.com. Subscribe to his YouTube channel, or follow him on Instagram.