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Old 05-14-2005, 03:38 AM   #1
MidnightThunder
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Question Speed Building

I am currently working on building speed on both the electric and acoustic. I recently purchased the Guitar Speed Trainer (from online). It so far seems to be very helpful.

Has anyone else tried this? If so, did it do well for you or no?

Can anyone offer any advice on exercises, drills, ect. on helping me build my speed?

Thanks!
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Old 05-14-2005, 03:59 AM   #2
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Guitar Speed Trainer???? never heard of them do you have a link?
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Old 05-14-2005, 04:05 AM   #3
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Rock on! Send us a free version if you can.
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Old 05-14-2005, 04:39 AM   #4
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I can't send a free version due to copyright laws of course. I paid $29.99 for it and was able to instantly download it. It is really kewl.

The link is www.guitarspeed.com

They have a money back quarentee too, so I am impressed so far.

If you decide to get it, enjoy! Let me know how it goes for you k?
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Old 05-14-2005, 01:38 PM   #5
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As a 'Guitar Techniques' instructor once said "Speed is just a by-product of accuracy!" If I could write out tabs on THIS, I could show you some great excercises
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Old 05-14-2005, 02:10 PM   #6
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Hours of practise=speed.

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Old 05-14-2005, 03:07 PM   #7
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Old 05-14-2005, 03:28 PM   #8
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Hours of perfect practice = perfect speed.
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Old 05-14-2005, 03:30 PM   #9
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^Yeah, great Idea! Just for the part that perfect practice = impossible and perfect speed = 100 nps.
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Old 05-14-2005, 03:50 PM   #10
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I'm afraid you missed the point entirely. The great irony of speed lies in this:

The slower your practice, the faster your progress and the greater your potential speed.

Any lick, scale, chord or arpeggio practiced with absolute accuracy (i.e., "perfect") will teach your subconscious, in the shortest possible time, exactly what you want to hear, namely beautifully-crafted fast playing.

On the other hand, practicing with anything less than absolute accuracy teaches your subconscious that you want to hear something entirely different, namely sloppy, uncertain playing.

Try this: Resolve to practice only at a tempo at which you can play with total, drop-dead accuracy for 21 days. This will take tremendous discipline. But at the end of those 21 days I promise you'll play at a speed and with an accuracy that will amaze you.

I hope you'll post the results of your experiment. -gpb0216
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Old 05-14-2005, 04:14 PM   #11
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That sounds tempting, that 21 days idea...



Hmmm... do you mean practise chromatics and such this way?
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Old 05-14-2005, 04:32 PM   #12
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What you practice in this way for 21 days is entirely your call. But whatever you practice like this will gleam and shimmer like a precious gem at the end of that 21 days. Try it and see. If you do you'll probably never go back to how you're practicing now. I sure didn't.
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Old 05-14-2005, 06:41 PM   #13
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Quote:
Originally posted by gpb0216
What you practice in this way for 21 days is entirely your call. But whatever you practice like this will gleam and shimmer like a precious gem at the end of that 21 days. Try it and see. If you do you'll probably never go back to how you're practicing now. I sure didn't.


That sounds like something you pulled out of your ass.
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Old 05-14-2005, 07:46 PM   #14
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That sounds like something you pulled out of your ass.

e10sc,

Many people claim to have open minds, but your thoughtful response to an idea with which you apparently weren't familiar really sets you apart.

Actually, I first encountered this approach to practicing at the U.S. Armed Forces School of Music in 1976 (please see my profile). In the ensuing 29 years I've practiced this way exclusively and will never go back to trying to force speed. My playing is orders of magnitude smoother and faster than it was when I was a 23-year-old rock star wannabe.

I urge you to give it a try. As I mentioned earlier, this approach requires enormous discipline, but the results are well worth it. If you do get through the 21 days, please post your impressions of the process.

Thanks again for your encouraging message.

All the best,
gpb0216
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Old 05-14-2005, 11:00 PM   #15
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Sorry about sounding like an ass, I really didn't mean it. It's just everyone has their ways of doing things, and they always think it's the perfect way to become the next Jimi Hendrix, so don't take offense. I still consider myself a beginner(damn theory) but once you've been playing for a decent amount of time, mastering most songs shouldn't take 21 days. When I first started playing I took everything slow, every chord was emphasized and perfect, every riff was slow and pronounced. So your technique is definately useful, but if you've been playing for 30 years, you really should be able to pick up and song and play it without taking the 21 days.
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Old 05-14-2005, 11:08 PM   #16
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^ that's not what he said though. It wasn't "picking up a song", it was being able to play faster. As in, you can play a faster triplet if you play it slowly with perfect accuracy for 21 days.
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Old 05-14-2005, 11:50 PM   #17
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Quote:
Originally posted by gpb0216
That sounds like something you pulled out of your ass.

e10sc,

Many people claim to have open minds, but your thoughtful response to an idea with which you apparently weren't familiar really sets you apart.

Actually, I first encountered this approach to practicing at the U.S. Armed Forces School of Music in 1976 (please see my profile). In the ensuing 29 years I've practiced this way exclusively and will never go back to trying to force speed. My playing is orders of magnitude smoother and faster than it was when I was a 23-year-old rock star wannabe.

I urge you to give it a try. As I mentioned earlier, this approach requires enormous discipline, but the results are well worth it. If you do get through the 21 days, please post your impressions of the process.

Thanks again for your encouraging message.

All the best,
gpb0216


Do you take every song for 21 days, or is that just a variable in the whole technique of learning?

Couldn't you take a song and play it slow for 2 days and then be able to play it normally?

I'm not questioning your theory because it obviously worked for you, I'm just interested in why so long...
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Old 05-15-2005, 12:11 AM   #18
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Quote:
Originally posted by UtBDan
^ that's not what he said though. It wasn't "picking up a song", it was being able to play faster. As in, you can play a faster triplet if you play it slowly with perfect accuracy for 21 days.


Oh okay, well then my same statement could still be made. You still need to push yourself. Think about it this way, what if you're aspiring to be a cross country runner and want to get in shape. If you take the slow method and just walk every day for 21 days, you'll have that route memorized and you'll walk with ease, but you won't be able to run it. For guitar why don't you start slow, and gradually push yourself every day, getting better everyday. And do this without compromising technique. I don't have anything against GPB, I've seen his posts and he seems very knowledgable and I'm sure he's very good at guitar, but I just really disagree with this 21 day practice routine.
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Old 05-15-2005, 12:31 AM   #19
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Quote:
Originally posted by DorkusMalorkus
Do you take every song for 21 days, or is that just a variable in the whole technique of learning?

Couldn't you take a song and play it slow for 2 days and then be able to play it normally?

I'm not questioning your theory because it obviously worked for you, I'm just interested in why so long...


well, he may only be using that amount as an example of a long bout of concentration and dedicated effort, which in and of itself will produce amazing results (i've shown this very concept to students by expressing to them that I want them to take one scale segment or lick and play it 20 beats slower then they know they can play it, non-stop, for one hour.... and then see how fast they can go after that one hour.... sure enough, they usually beat their top speed by about 10-20 bpms) ....

he's showing you the extreme benefits on a larger scale as it applies in the long run... which I also make clear to me wee pupils. lets face it, we all know you could practice something all day nice and slow and accurate and be playing it super fast and fluidly by the end of the day. but the next day, you gotta start all over again. each day retaining a little bit of the previous days progress.

he's pointing out the continuing process of that effect over a 21 day period.

his example though (and I think this also might be why he used the 21 day paradigm) coincides with sound psychological principles..

Humans as you know are creatures of habit, and it's generally accepted that a time table of 21 days is the requirment for a firm establishment of a new habit...

it's the reason why most diet/eating changes and exercise regimens only last about a week or 2 (besides caloric deficiencies kicking in your bodies feast or famen responses which cause you to binge....) they're just not given enough time to fully entrench themselves in your brain as habits, where as the old habits are fully entrenched and more easily adhered to.

think of it like this.... take an overgrown field (your brain), if there's a beaten path through that mess (a particular habit) it's easiest to just follow that path every day on your trek to wherever. in order to create a new path (new habit) you have to trudge through overgrown weeds, twicks and sticks, loosing your footing etc... and it's gonna take a little while, day after day of treading that new path (building that habit by repititious actions) for that path to be beaten down (habit to be formed) but by the time you do, the old path (old bad habit) has since started to get overgrown and not really be that easy of a path anymore...

therefore the new path has replaced the old

new habit > old habit

it just so happens that mentally speaking, that process (for a new habit to take root and begin guiding your actions naturally, like the old habits did) takes 21 days.



the only thing I'd add to his bit is to include speed bursts. while practicing slowly does improve speed and accuracy greatly, adding speed bursts in every so often will do so more effectively.

think of practicing for a race... a 100 yard dash lets say. well, you're not gonna go out on day one and walk 5 yards, go back, walk 5 yards again, go back, walk those 5 yards again etc... then the next day, at the same speed, walk 8 yards, etc..etc..

however, while there are similarities to the comparison, the guitar is very different. thats why we must do things slowly slowly slowly to work on our accuracy and train the muscles to work in the exact path of motion, in order to build comfort, stability and most of all familiarity... (really, that's all speed really is) ...and really, even runners do the "slow" type of practice that we do.... by lifting weights. they're building their muscles to endure greater stress for longer periods of time..

but moving very fast feels very differently than playing slowly...
we must add in speed bursts and try and play top speed for short periods of time to train our muscles, our hands, and our brain, to be comfortable playing fast.

so say you were to do the 21 day thing (which would also prove to be much more beneficial in more ways than just speed development, believe me.) and say you practiced 2 hours a day doing that one exercise.... I might

play that at one tempo for an hour straight
5 minute break
5 minutes of continuous speed bursts ( that means play it fast, stop, play it fast again, stop, etc... not just in a continuous loop)
20 minutes slow
5 minutes speed bursts
20 minutes slow
and then top if off playing ridiculously fast for a minute or so.

this last minute or two is actually very important... paying no attention to anything but effortless speed.... that means no muscle tension, no thought, no nothing, just motion.

don't even worry about accuracy. just move your fingers in line with the lick or exercise (as by now they know full well where they're supposed to go) and move your picking hand as required (it also will know it's path by now. the only difference being that the accuracy & syncronization isn't quite there betwixt the two lol)

but that doesn't matter for this purpose. what you're teaching your hands in this 1-2 minute segment is how it feels to move effortlessly and without impedence of thought.

the improvements are drastic if given enough time... hence the 21 days thing. he's very sound in his recommendation.

also, more importantly, the BENEFIT of said practice will bleed over and change all other aspects of your playing. you'll look at and approach practicing very different from then on. all entirely to your benefit. these are but a few of the things I meant before when I said (which would also prove to be much more beneficial in more ways than just speed development, believe me.)

he doesn't mean "always do the 21 day thing" and he certainly doesn't mean that everything you ever learn whether it be a two note lick or an entire solo has to be approached one at a time for 21 days a piece.

he's saying give this a shot and watch how it transforms your playing, your technical ability and most importantly your perspective and approach to the guitar and your understanding of how your body learns and how you progress when slow... dedicated... concentrated effort is put into achieving that result.


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Old 05-15-2005, 06:20 AM   #20
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Quote:
Originally posted by gpb0216
I'm afraid you missed the point entirely. The great irony of speed lies in this:

The slower your practice, the faster your progress and the greater your potential speed.

Any lick, scale, chord or arpeggio practiced with absolute accuracy (i.e., "perfect") will teach your subconscious, in the shortest possible time, exactly what you want to hear, namely beautifully-crafted fast playing.

On the other hand, practicing with anything less than absolute accuracy teaches your subconscious that you want to hear something entirely different, namely sloppy, uncertain playing.

Try this: Resolve to practice only at a tempo at which you can play with total, drop-dead accuracy for 21 days. This will take tremendous discipline. But at the end of those 21 days I promise you'll play at a speed and with an accuracy that will amaze you.

I hope you'll post the results of your experiment. -gpb0216



I know.


That's what I did for a year


He's right, listen to him

When playing slow, you're just programming your fingers for when you're playing fast.

Oh yeah, and about the speed burst thing... I disagree, for when you might make a mistake, you could **** up your muscle memory quite a bit.
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