#1
So I've read A LOT (and I shout: A LOT) of articles and so called 'lessons' about what to practice, how to practice, practice ideas and what not, but none of em really help me.
They say, practice technique or songs, but do it efficiently.

So my question is, what do you guys really practice? I've been running up&down random scales and chromatic runs lately trying to improve my alt.picking and technique, but what I really want are some solid exercises and stuff.

Can anyone help me with that? Some warming up runs and technical exercises are what I'd really want to find. I hope that you can give me a link to some real exercises or that you can give me some exercises right here.

Thanks,

Cj
#2
If I ever do a workout, it's usually just a few sections from Steve Vai's 7 Hour Workout. Basically all that does is get my fingers loose though
#4
heres a couple
play a C major scale from the low F to the high G on the fretboard, four notes per string.
Then play it in thirds (alt pick as much as possible)
then play it in fourths (same)
then play it in fifths, sixths, sevenths and octaves
now play it in stepwise thirds, fourths, fifths, sixths, sevenths and octaves.
Now do this with every other major scale, using the entire range of the fretboard (the lowest possible note to the highest).
does wonders for your technique--also some good pieces to improve technique are brouwer's 3rd, 4th, 5th and 6th etudes simpleces (there classical pieces but can be played with a pick to good effect---3 is a good left hand workout, 4 and 5 will help you get string skipping down and 6 is a good combination of alternate picking and string skipping). Check out joe viola's technique of the saxophone volume 2: chord studies, for some great left hand stuff (good for building shifting chops) that incorperates melodically approaching chord tones by half step (good for getting your ears used to non diatonic functional harmony) and, if you use the written articulations will take your legato playing to another level. the wolfhart violin studies are good for overall technique, and the arban interval studies are great for working out your left hand. theres also a book floating around the internet called 'superchops', which is great for speeding up the mental process behind harmonically informed improvisation.

any technical work you do should do more then improve the speed of your hands---it should work out your ears (get you used to new sounds), your brain (make you figure out the notes of a scale/improve your fretboard knowledge) or your eyes (make your read music) as well, and preferably all four (hands, ears, brain, eyes), as technique is less about your physical ability to play and more about training the whole musician.
all the best.
(insert self-aggrandizing quote here)
Last edited by tehREALcaptain at Mar 28, 2011,
#5
the best thing you can do is educate yourself on HOW to practice and how your fingers and the rest of your body should feel.
Relaxation is the key to developing, and I've found that the hard way through many years of exercises and trying to increase my speed. Ironically, the slower you practice, and the more care to detail to give the better and faster the results.
There are no magic exercises I'm afraid, but I will say, only practice what you intend on using.... so like z4tweeny said.... make your own
#6
When I practice "technical" exercises, it's usually the major or minor scale, on 3 note per string patterns, starting on the consecutive note on the low E string once the 3 notes are done on the high E string.

However most of my "practice" is just completed through the process of learning, writing and playing songs. For example if a cover band wants me to learn x song, I'll listen to it, arrange it best I can for one guitar, and learn the solo (if it's a memorable one). That's the stuff I find really enjoyable, and leaves me with things I can play for the rest of my life.
And no, Guitar Hero will not help. Even on expert. Really.
Soundcloud
#7
Okay so it looks like most of you don't really practice but mostly play?

@The Vickshow:
I'll give it a look!

@tehREALcaptain
that r some good ideas, I'll be sure to check out the classical pieces!
#8
I tend to practice through applying the knowledge.

Like I play excersises to a metronome a hell of a lot less than I do to a backing track, or to a song.

I'm a big follower of Dave Weiner's, so I've adapted his mentality that you need to practice in a musical context, so that when you apply what you've learnt it'll be musical.
#10
Practice songs man. Play what is fun to you and learn it accurately. Improvement takes time. Just keep playing and enjoying it and that's one of the best things you can do
I hate my sig
#11
Might want to check out the technique forum, huge sticky with lots of exercises within.

I practice hitting chord tones over chords, grooving and sightreading.

What you "really" need to practice depends on your circumstances and aims.
#12
Quote by Freepower
Might want to check out the technique forum, huge sticky with lots of exercises within.

I practice hitting chord tones over chords, grooving and sightreading.

What you "really" need to practice depends on your circumstances and aims.


Hey Freepower!
Some examples on how you practice hitting chord tones would be great! I'm looking to learn the same thing
#13
I stretch out my fingers by doing some chromatic runs up and down the neck and across the fretboard.

then I practice a few songs my band plays.

afterward I try to write a song using a random scale.... pretty much I run my fingers through a scale and then decide if I feel like using that one.

next I play through a few more songs.

after that I try to learn a few new riffs/ licks or a new song

and I finish by playing one of my band's 'set-enders' (basically a song that we always nail and feel like total rockstars when we play them live.)
Quote by Dirk Gently
Some pieces are only meant to be played by people with six fingers on their fretting hand. Sorry.
#14
Hey Freepower!
Some examples on how you practice hitting chord tones would be great! I'm looking to learn the same thing


Well, best way to start is take two chords like E and Am, and start by just jamming over them but making sure you always hit the root of the chord on the first beat. Then start hitting the 3rd, then the 5th.

Then you might want to start trying to hit the chord tones on beats 1 and 3 as well as just beat one.

From there on you can just add more chords or try to travel the fretboard more.