hello ug

i've been playing guitar for almost 2 years, but i'm struggling to improve my technique. i've read the "horizontal vs vertical growth" article, the main problem i have is that i've grown horizontally a lot, but i've made no vertical progress. everything i play is wrong! i don't think i can't strum right, i can't do legato phrases well, i can't even play the scale on the solo of "smoke on the water" right! my teacher doesn't help either, because he focuses a lot on teaching us song after song after song. this puts off, i pick up my guitar and after playing for a moment, i just can't go on, i feel mad and frustrated at myself and put my guitar away. so i think i don't do what some call "correct practice". i'm building a routine of correct practice for me to go through everyday. i've heard the "principles of correct practice for guitar" is a great book that guarantees improvement if you follow the exercises on the book, but i just can't buy the book or order it. that's why i'm building my own routine for me to improve my technique.

i'm confused by all the exercises and articles out there, so what good exercises that can TRULY help me improve? things that can help improve my speed, strength, etc. what things that i should include in my practices (for example, this exercise on x technique for x minutes, y minutes of this exercise on y technique).

please ug, help me build my practice routine and improve! i'm really desperate right now.
The way to truely improve in a particular technique is to practice that technique.

Sorry, I know it sounds like a basic answer, but it's a basic problem. You need to accept the fact that you aren't going to be able to do things well at first and practice them every chance you get until you can. There's simply no real way around it. As far as exercises, there are a lot of good ones out there, but nothing's stopping you from making your own. Try playing an entire song legato. Get yourself a metronome (or www.metronomeonline.com if you can't afford one) and practice your strums untill they synch to the beat. The scale from the Smoke on the Water solo giving you problems? Practice it untill you can play it blindfolded. Push yourself to be better at everything you want to do, and you will be. Period.

Explain to your teacher your frustrations too. He may be showing everyone songs to give you somthing to have fun with and to keep everyone interested, but he may be willing to take you aside and give you some pointers or even dedicate a class or two a week to technique building.

Ultimately though, the only thing keeping you back is yourself. Push yourself to be better. If somthing is hard, practice it untill your fingers throb. When somthing frustrates you or makes you mad, use that as fuel to be better so you don't have to feel that way. It's all up to you.
-Guitar Gear-
1995 American Fender Strat, EMG 85 pup
Randall RH200 Head
Marshall 1960a Cab
Woods Acoustic
-Bass Gear-
Spector Legend 4 bass
Washburn Bantam bass
Hartke HA2500
Fender Bassman 410H
Play what you love, love what you play
This is one of those tough ones. You've got a teacher, but it sounds like he's teaching in a group environment, instead of one-to-one. What you really need is a teacher who dedicates 30 minutes a week just to you. He'll catch your strumming errors and other problems. Building your own routine can also be hard, because you may not know best what you need.

You need to work on your strumming and you also need to work on your scales. There are several good exercises that can help with your speed and accuracy. I'd also recommend you find a private guitar instructor.