Learning to play guitar can be intimidating, especially if you're an older student. There are some steps you can take to help feel more prepared for the lesson, and they are as follows.
Get Your Guitar and Associated Peripherals
Unless your instructor is handling this, you will need to make sure you have a guitar. Most people find they prefer to start with an acoustic guitar, and this is mostly because it's simpler. If you do plan to start with electric, that's fine, you'll just need to get a few more peripherals.
Here's a list that may help:
- guitar picks (of varying thicknesses — you can often find variety packs)
- guitar strap
- guitar case (if it does not come with one)
- guitar tuner
- amplifier and cables (if using an electric guitar)
Be sure to add to this list anything your instructor would also like you to get, like specific guitar books.
Strengthen Your Hand
If you haven't played a string instrument before, you may not realize that it takes a lot of hand pressure to hold the string down firmly enough to get the proper sound. It's something you develop, over time, but you can work on developing that strength before your first lesson. Many guitar and music stores sell little hand exercisers, sometimes they're also called finger strengtheners. There are a variety of types, but the most common one is a little handheld device with four to five buttons. Using these, you can do a basic exercise where you press down each finger in turn across the device. It might be nice to have something to do with your hands during your next zoom call.
Set a Goal
Learning how to play will go much more quickly if you set a goal for your learning. Do you want to get to the point where you can play a specific song or even a solo from a specific song? Going over that with your instructor will give them an idea of how to guide you and the reason that you're getting into guitar playing. That can have an effect on what they teach you and how, so it's important that they know what you need.
Give Yourself Compassion
When you first start learning, it's going to feel like very basic stuff. That's because it is, and you'll move on when you're ready. But it can be slow going, and you don't know when you're going to break through to the next step. So be ready to give yourself a break. It's fine to push yourself a bit, but you may have to accept that you learn at a certain rate, and that's fine. It's okay, you'll get there in the end.
Sign up for guitar lessons to start learning the guitar today.