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Old 02-04-2013, 06:34 PM   #1
BlueIceBox
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How do some players practice for 3+ hours?!

I've been seeing a lot of the pro's talk about thier childhood and they always talk about how they used to practice for 4-6 hours every day.

Availibility of free time aside, how are people able to practise for so long? What sort of things do they do? I would love to be able to have even just 2 hours of decent practice every day, but I'm not really happy with my routine because I spend quite a lone time every day 'practicing' but I don't feel that I'm playing as well as I should be.

My usual routine is as follows, 10-15 mins warm up, then practice a few exercises relating to the technique I'm focused on at the moments for 30-40 mins. I would spend the rest of my free time playing songs or learning new songs or just noodling. In total I'm with my guitar for a good 3 hours every day, but I only spend the first hour practicing.

When I practice a certain technique I can only do so for a maximum of 40 mins before I just start playing worse or I get bored, so how do these guys manage for 3+ hours?
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Old 02-04-2013, 06:40 PM   #2
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some people consider learning songs or studying music "practice"

in my practice time now i mostly work on my ear ill spend a an hour or so just listening to things and tyring to play them out by ear or humming scales and singing chords to get that osund in my ear
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Old 02-04-2013, 06:50 PM   #3
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I can easily practice for 6 hours only with a toilet- and cigarette break. I don't warm up I just play along to some music keeping a focus on the thing that I want to improve for a hour or two. Then I just mess around with some licks and maybe try to work a bit with some riffs I've made for an hour only to get back to the playing along.
It's easier than you think. Its all about doing something to like rather than boring exercises over and over again. Just choose some songs you like where you can improve.
You don't learn music sitting down, you learn it by playing it.
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Old 02-04-2013, 06:56 PM   #4
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Professional do not just work on a technique at a time, they also work in implementing a technique into a song (either by composing a song with that technique, or learning an existing song that contains that technique), integrating the techniques so that you can switch between them instantly, and a number of other things that amateurs often overlook. For instance: playing while standing, or walking, or jumping; rehearse the whole show rather than one song at a time, etc.

Imagine yourself playing on stage or in a studio (two completely different situations) What do you need to develop in your guitar skills in order to be able to do it, and feel confident about it? You will see that you will NEED more than 2h to train all this. :-)
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Old 02-04-2013, 08:26 PM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by BlueIceBox
I would spend the rest of my free time playing songs or learning new songs or just noodling. In total I'm with my guitar for a good 3 hours every day, but I only spend the first hour practicing.


Learning new songs is essential.

If you don't play as well as you think you should, then there must be some songs you want to play but can't. List them. Look at each in detail. Figure out what you've got to learn to be able to play them. Take it step by step.

Find a book, find a tutor.
Find people to play with.
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Old 02-04-2013, 11:55 PM   #6
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Try learnin the whole Tony Macalpine "Edge of Insanity" Cd from the power tab. That could keep you busy more than 3 hours per day. Freakin fun though. I like how his shred is more complex than some - he does like 16th notes but with a little 8th note triplet or one quarter note... thrown into the middle of the lick. Really complex. Sometimes I cheat a little.
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Old 02-05-2013, 01:13 AM   #7
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Easily.
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Old 02-05-2013, 02:32 AM   #8
Sickz
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I think they can practice for that long because they have a very structured and organized way of practicing. I practice 3-4 hours a day myself, and i practice all of those hours, because i have set up things i want to do during my practice session that fills it out.

This would be stuff like:
Transcribing
Technique
Theory
Sight reading
Scales/Arpeggios.
Chords.
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Old 02-05-2013, 03:04 AM   #9
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I heard an interview with Tom Morello on Adam Carolla's morning radio show back before the podcast he does now. He said that once the band was a full time thing he spent 8 hours a day practicing. 2 hours playing along with songs from the radio, 2 hours on technique, 2 hours coming up with new sounds, and 2 hours writing songs.
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Old 02-05-2013, 07:17 AM   #10
bondmorkret
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I've been playing for as long as I can remember (I'm 27 now) and I still practice for 6-7 hours a day, purely because I really enjoy it. The only way to do this type of practice routine is to have a really organised, varied practice plan that never includes mindless noodling. You should always know what you're practicing at any one time. I wrote a book on practice strategy actually, you can check it out here:

Guitar Practice Strategy Book

I need to see regular improvement to maintain this type of regime, which I always do, with the way that I practice. In fact it's basically impossible not to improve
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Old 02-05-2013, 06:37 PM   #11
cdgraves
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I do 2-4 hours daily and still barely get everything done that I need/want.

Here's what I at least try to get done every day:

Warmups:
15min RH
15min LH
15min scales
15min arpeggios

45-60min of covers

45-60min working out new covers or originals

60min of Jazz

1-4 hours of rehearsals 4x weekly

Sometimes I'll do random technical workouts or sight reading stuff in place or in addition to the above. Comes out to about 24-30 hours a week of music if I'm diligent.
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Old 02-05-2013, 11:10 PM   #12
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Okay...kind of as an aside. How the heck do you find 3+ hours to practice a day? I work full-time and have other responsibilities. I'm lucky if I can get an hour of practice. Do you guys cut out a lot of leisure activities, like television and such? Is music part of your job?
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Old 02-05-2013, 11:19 PM   #13
musician26
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Okay...kind of as an aside. How the heck do you find 3+ hours to practice a day? I work full-time and have other responsibilities. I'm lucky if I can get an hour of practice. Do you guys cut out a lot of leisure activities, like television and such? Is music part of your job?
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Old 02-05-2013, 11:21 PM   #14
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I have more than enough time, lucky I guess. Yeah some advice, never get a job. ever. Work is good though, just not a "job"

also yeah I play electric quiet when I watch tv all the time

Last edited by Tempoe : 02-05-2013 at 11:23 PM.
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Old 02-06-2013, 01:43 AM   #15
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Quote:
Originally Posted by musician26
Okay...kind of as an aside. How the heck do you find 3+ hours to practice a day? I work full-time and have other responsibilities. I'm lucky if I can get an hour of practice. Do you guys cut out a lot of leisure activities, like television and such? Is music part of your job?


I put in about 70 hours a week between "real" work and music. On days I'm not lazy about music, I might get 1-2 hours of uncommitted time for things like interneting, TV/netflix, eating, and relationship maintenance.

Short of actually working in music, which is my goal, having a regular day job is the best thing for my musical improvement. Having predictable income means I can upgrade and maintain my gear, keep gas in my car, and take paid vacation for gigs if I need.

Making that much time for music IS a challenge, but it takes a lot of consistent effort to break into music as a profession.
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Old 02-06-2013, 02:21 PM   #16
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How do people work 8 hour works days at jobs that hate ?

I find myself addicted to music and try to figure out how to limit the amount of playing time. If you get a lot of reward from something, you repeat it - it's human nature.
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Old 02-06-2013, 11:28 PM   #17
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Points well taken.
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Old 02-07-2013, 06:45 AM   #18
bondmorkret
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Quote:
Originally Posted by musician26
Okay...kind of as an aside. How the heck do you find 3+ hours to practice a day? I work full-time and have other responsibilities. I'm lucky if I can get an hour of practice. Do you guys cut out a lot of leisure activities, like television and such? Is music part of your job?


Good question. I based my life around playing, so my job allows me to practice as much as I need to. Nowadays I teach and run the website, which gives me a lot of practice time. Before that I simply wouldn't take a job if it didn't fit around my practice/gigging schedule. All a matter of priorities!
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Old 02-07-2013, 06:55 AM   #19
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Quote:
Originally Posted by musician26
Okay...kind of as an aside. How the heck do you find 3+ hours to practice a day? I work full-time and have other responsibilities. I'm lucky if I can get an hour of practice. Do you guys cut out a lot of leisure activities, like television and such? Is music part of your job?


I work 9-5 Monday to Saturday, on Mondays, Tuesdays, Thursdays as soon as I get in I pick up my guitar and play for 4 hours. On the weekends I can play 6 or 7 hours each day.
It leaves you with time for other stuff if you're smart about it. For instance I play while im watching tv or eating.

Quote:
Originally Posted by sweetdude3000
How do people work 8 hour works days at jobs that hate ?

I find myself addicted to music and try to figure out how to limit the amount of playing time. If you get a lot of reward from something, you repeat it - it's human nature.


Money, for me it's money to fund more gear.
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Old 02-07-2013, 11:28 AM   #20
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Warmups, Scales/Modes, Finger Picking Exercises, and the majority of the time jamming to backing tracks...sometimes just drums in the backing track so i can freestyle everything guitar/bass related.

BUT with kids i tend to not get a chance to practice for several hours...
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