Hello there!
About a month and a half ago, I picked up my electric guitar again. Since then, I've basically just been messing around with barre chords, some simple songs and some random beginner lessons on the internet. However, since I know that this kind of playing isn't particularly effective, I've been trying to find out what a good practice schedule would be. I'm mainly interested in stuff like any kind of rock, or bluesy stuff. I've got about an hour and a half for practicing a day.

I'd really appreciate if someone would recommend good things to work on for a beginner with these interests!

I've tried to make a possible practice routine:
Day 1
Warming up - 10 minutes (is this too much?)
Legato exercises - 20 minutes
Left/right hand coordination - 20 minutes
Learning and playing riffs - 30 minutes
Warming down - 10 minutes (is this too much?)

Day 2
Warming up - 10 minutes
Arpeggio exercises - 20 minutes
Left/right hand coordination - 20 minutes
Learning and playing riffs - 30 minutes
Warming down - 10 minutes

I split it between two days so it won't always be the same thing. Are there some other exercises you could recommend for a beginner? What about scales?

If your serious and willing to put some hard work in it check out 'Pebber Brown daily practice module 1 part 1' on YouTube that's the real shit man.
Theirs no point in practicing legato at this stage. First practice some Trills for like a month.
Check out 'Pebber Brown trills'.
And I would start learning the pentatonic scales then major scales before trying any arpeggios.

Also what's warming down??
Last edited by Guitar137335 at Mar 13, 2016,
Thanks man, I'll take a look at that lesson! Seems like there's plenty of stuff to do by the looks of it.
Yeah, I was wondering if it would be to soon to practice legato and arpeggio, that's another reason why I asked.

And by warming down I just mean doing some stretches that would be good for the fretting hand, since I like to do that before and after a practice session. It might be called something else, but English isn't my native language so I just went with that.
in order to play leads you need to have a basic idea (at least) of where you are going on the fretboard. this usually means scales all over the neck. as already mentioned start with the pentatonic scale in various keys (much rock and blues is in E or A so that is a good place to start). you need to learn techniques like finger vibrato and bends to be an effective lead player. you will also have to work on picking in order to make things fluid.

the best thing you can do once you get some of that under your belt is to just do it. don't worry about it being great or even good. when you first start it won't be so why sweat it. with a little practice you can probably play a couple of basic cliche ridden leads which is fine we all have to start somewhere.

down the road try playing to vocal melody lines in songs just get the feel and try to play a lead that follows it.

That video has essential exercises to really develop precise lead guitar skills finger wise.

My other piece of advice would be, learn as many solos from guitarists you like as possible!!
Start with the easy ones of course, but I believe there's no better way of learning than by learning from the greats. Even if they're just riffs, you'll learn heaps about riff writing and songwriting in general.
1) warm up should be actual exercises - "warm down" is unnecessary
2) if you want to be a "real" lead guitarist then you need to learn solos by ear - start focusing on that now - make it a major priority. By "real" lead guitarist, I mean someone who can invent leads, improvise and create - if your goal is simply to play covers, than ignore my advice. Start with slow solos - like old blues, classic rock or old metal, like early Sabbath ( Paranoid Album)- it needs to be slow enough that you can hear every note. It's slow and painful to do at the start, but it will catapult your overall playing with time.
3) The Pettrucci video linked above is a goldmine for technique and exercises - he is a meticulous player and you can learn a lot by studying his approach.

The main critique I have of your schedule is that there is too much focus on exercises and not enough on learning actual music - you should double your riff and solo learning time.

Exercises are important, but should not be a priority over learning and playing actual music.
Yep, 30 minutes of exercises max, followed by putting on your favorite rock and blues tracks and jamming along to understand notes and scales, AND the solo structure, themes, and communication with the listener through your instrument.
"Your sound is in your hands as much as anything. It's the way you pick, and the way you hold the guitar, more than it is the amp or the guitar you use." -- Stevie Ray Vaughan

"Anybody can play. The note is only 20 percent. The attitude of the motherfucker who plays it is 80 percent." -- Miles Davis

Guthrie on tone: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=zmohdG9lLqY
A lot of what people have said is spot on so I have a few things that I do more now that I wished I had done much sooner - Try and learn songs by ear Chords first then licks and solos , I know this might sound strange to some but when I am working on a song by ear I don't think about scales just the key the song is in and the sounds, ~If you know the song well and most of the time I have the song in my head so this teaches your to take if from your head to the guitar .
You're absolutely on the right track. I'd recommend reallocating your time to include a little more rhythm playing, particularly chord studies. There are so many different ways to voice all the chords and the more you know, the easier it is to find the notes you need in a solo.

When you get comfortable with the licks and riffs you've learned, you can then move on to making them your own. Below is a link to a sheet I give my students on Motivic Development. It may be a little advanced right now, but it will hopefully be motivating to see where you could take the stuff you're learning.


Also, and I'm sure there are many people here on the forum who will argue with me, I recommend learning to read music. Standard notation provides a visual representation for how the music is supposed to sound. When the notes on the page go up, the pitches you play should sound like they're going up. Tab only offers this visual reinforcement when the licks change strings. Otherwise it's just a group of numbers on a line. Think about it like this: Imagine you've learned to speak English simply by listening and repeating (like we usually do with music). Now imagine that after several years you've been pronouncing words incorrectly or have been getting entire expressions wrong. Learning a written version of the language can help avoid that. That's what learning to read music affords us. It's very easy to learn how to create phrases when what you see reinforces what you hear. Hal Leonard's Book 1 is what I use with all of my students and they do really well with it. Just a thought.

Good Luck!
I would recommend the same thing! Yeah you're right totally! But I think you need some sport methods to develop your technique. I took sport guitar lessons from Anton Oparin. He builds systems to train your muscles for guitar playing and he develops speed and stamina like crazy!!!! Like craaazzyy!!!! Watch this video dude!! http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=wpA1aDOmM74 That's him! He's one of those who knows secrets! Find his guitar lessons.
I agree in general that you should limit your time when it comes to exercises


Because you're a beginner, I think it's OK to dedicate extra time to getting your basic technique in shape. You're not going to shred overnight, or likely for quite a while. But you can probably do an hour a day of technique, if you split it between 3 or 4 different areas of focus. Once you have the basics in good shape you can dial back the exercise time and use more musical concepts (scales, arps, chords) to warm them up.

For reference, I've played for quite a while and do a 45 minute warmup and exercise routine most days. Basic RH picking warmup, scales slow to quick, legato scales, and chord inversions or whatever else. All in all about 15 min of warmup and 30 of technical drills. If I need to get a technique up to speed or feel rusty, I might do an extra set of exercises later.

After my warm up session, everything I do is repertoire or practicing improv or just jamming. The bulk of your time should be spend on actual music.

The trick is to make sure you're actually applying your technique to the music you learn. That in itself will provide plenty of "exercise", so there's really no need to do more technical work. Always be mindful of your technique and use the best technique you can.

Edit: and yes, you absolutely must get the fretboard memorized. Working out your scales and chords (by yourself, not from a chart!) will give you the material you need to work on technique AND musicality at the same time. There's no sense in drilling 1-2-3-4 exercises that don't translate to real music. Use scales and arpeggios as the basis for your technique exercises.
Last edited by cdgraves at Mar 29, 2016,