How To Play Guitar For Beginners: Avoiding Mistake #3

How To Play Guitar For Beginners: Avoiding Mistake #3

Bad Habits To Avoid Guitar

Learning how to play guitar is not difficult if you learn some basic good habits early on. In this video I’ve chosen the most common bad habits that beginners fall into that hold them back.

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Hey there, I’m Tomas Michaud founder of Real Guitar Awesomeness and Starland School of Music. Over the past 40 years, as my position as owner of my own music school I have seen every bad habit you can imagine. What I wanna do in this video, is consolidate what I considered the most common bad habits that you can avoid that will give you the best bang for your buck.

Now if you pay attention to even some of these, it will save you a lot of time and frustration and another way to look at that is that by developing good habits early on, you can smooth out (1:42) to play awesome guitar and have more fun in the process so with that, let’s get started.

Hey welcome back.

The first habit is to develop good posture when you’re practicing. Now this may not seem important in the beginning especially if you’re younger but it will catch up to you. I’ve seen it over and over. This is something I go into very much detail in another lesson so I’m just gonna skim over the issues right now.

First of all of course, you wanna practice with your back straight up when one of the biggest problems is leaning down over your guitar like this. Eventually that will cause pain in your back and your lower back, your upper back and lower back also it looks bad. You don’t wanna see guitarist like that when they’re playing, it really doesn’t look very good.

One habit that you want to also avoid especially if you’re planning on playing standing up at some point is letting your guitar slide down like this. I see this lot when people practicing. They’re trying to look and see the finger board. It’s better to keep up your guitar straight up and then about the same place when you stand up. One good way to do that is to put a strap on your guitar. It doesn’t work for classical guitar as well but for electric and acoustic, that’s a common way to practice. Put the strap on and tighten it so when you stand up, the guitar stays in the same place.

Next, I wanna talk about the left hand. First the thumb position, put your thumb behind the neck so that it’s flat against the neck, almost the ball of your thumb actually, just a little the ball of my thumb and its relaxed. The fingers I want to go up and then down on the strings. Again, one of the important issues is to relax and when I mean relax, use only enough tension or pressure to make the note that you’re trying to make and no more so you can even kind of loosen up it if starts buzzing and then tighten up just enough pressure. Too much pressure and you’ll develop a bad habit of tension.

Now for the right hand, when you’re strumming keep your hand relaxed and when you’re using a pick, hold the pick in such a way that the back of the pick is type but then you’re allowing it to wobble a little bit that will make for a smoother strum. When you’re finger picking, what you want to do is place your fingers on the strings and then pull each finger into your palm without pulling your whole hand away, that excess motion will make for a choppy fingerpicking pattern, again, staying relaxed.

Now all of these have one thing in common. You build tension when you try to go too fast or skip steps in the developmental process. The best way to develop good habits and good technique is to go step by step and to stay relaxed throughout the process. When you skip steps, it almost (3:41) build in extra tension and bad habits.

Thank you for joining me in this video. If you found this helpful, please like it on Facebook ( or YouTube ( also leave me a comment. I do read every single comment on my blog ( . Hope you can do the same real soon.

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