How Long Does It Take To Learn Guitar?
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How Long Does it Take to Learn Guitar?

When people ask 'How long does it take to learn guitar?' What they often mean is 'How fast can I learn guitar?' The answer, of course, is it depends. It depends on how many days a week they are going to practice, what are they using for lessons and to some degree aptitude.

Anyone who expects to sit there on their first lesson and play for several hours in an attempt to 'blitz' it will be disappointed because initially learning guitar is as much about hardening your fingertips as it is practising. For this reason it is far more important to play for 20 minutes each day, every day. Initially you will find this painful on your chord hand but within a week you will notice hardening callouses on your finger tips and you will be able to play for longer sessions.

The daily practice will also make it easier for your hand muscles to learn guitar chords and hold the shapes which seem difficult during the early days. It is necessary to learn the basic chords first as this is the foundation for all songs and styles. Strum them once then play each string listening for buzzes and dead spots, reposition your chord hand and fingers to correct the faults and repeat. You may find your first week is only learning three or four chords but then, if you have the right guide, you will have enough to play many songs with just these chords.

There are three main ways to learn guitar, the best of which is having a tutor which will professionally guide you through the process and correct your mistakes and bad practices while tailoring the lessons to suit you. This is the fastest way to learn but is also the most expensive and still requires you to put the effort in on your own time. A cheaper method is to teach yourself using books, and there are some good guides out there, but the downside is your playing is not getting corrected and fine tuned by a professional. This method also requires complete self motivation as there are no demands to how much work you put in once the book has been bought.

Possibly the better of the both worlds is to learn using online lessons. These can provide bite size downloadable modules and videos to show you what it should sound like and give you far more information and learning than a book could provide while being cheaper than a tutor.

So, how long does it take to learn guitar?

As a general guide you can expect to be able to strum some basic songs by the first month, sounding relatively competent by three months, acquire lead basics by six months and able to play most intermediate songs by a year.

It will take two years to be able to play most songs and improvise, if theory has been learnt, and as long as you are still pushing yourself to learn more, five years to be accomplished.

These time scales are only a rough guide and really the answer is you never stop learning, but if you need a measure to guide you this is as good as any. But remember: Persistence is the key! You will only improve through regular daily practice and persistence will always win out over aptitude.

Click here for more information about learning the guitar and to see online guitar lesson reviews.


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