Every aspiring guitarist wants to get started learning guitar. If you don’t want to take guitar lessons, you’ll need to know hot to self teach guitar. You might be wondering is guitar easy to self teach? The answer is yes, so long as you’re following a few simple tricks that we’ll cover here today. Taking guitar lessons will help you learn faster, in most cases, but is not an absolute necessity at all! You can self teach yourself guitar, but you need to ensure that you’re able to be both a good student and a good teacher. I recommend setting up regular times to practice, and a progressive self made curriculum to loosely follow. This will ensure you’re getting the practice you need, and practicing riffs that will challenge you enough to keep you progressing.
Can I self teach myself guitar?
Yes, self teaching guitar can be an effective method to learn how to play guitar. Ensure you are planning out the things you plan to learn and practice regularly.
The toughest part about self teaching guitar is staying consistent and finding pieces to play that keep your practice sessions progressively challenging.
So long as you can find enough material to keep you interested in playing and learning guitar, the hardest part of self teaching is out of the way.
Classical guitar self learning
You can self teach yourself classical guitar. Just like with other styles of guitar, you’ll want to start with basic scales and chords.
The major difference when self teaching classical guitar will be that you will also want to learn how to read sheet music.
While other styles of guitar do not focus on sheet music, many guitarists don’t read sheet music, knowing how to read sheet music is invaluable for classical guitarist.
This doesn’t mean classical guitar needs to be harder, but you will be practicing different skills at first.
Getting a good method to learn sheet music will be a focus for the beginning months of learning classical guitar.
Acoustic guitar self taught
Acoustic guitar is easy to self teach. Starting with simple scales and basic chords, with regular practice, you’ll be able to play along with your favorite songs in only a few short weeks.
While it certainly wouldn’t hurt to learn how to read sheet music, it is not as important to learn sheet music for acoustic guitar.
Find a song you enjoy that has 4 chords, and using google or Ultimate-guitar.com to find the tab. Once you can play the song perfectly in time with a recording, move on to another song that’s a little more difficult.
Keeping the material you practice challenging is important for every self-taught musician. Your level of guitar playing will solely depending on your ability to keep teaching yourself new skills.
There are many self taught acoustic guitar players.
Self teaching electric guitar
Self teaching electric guitar can be easy so long as you set yourself up for success.
It will be very similar to learning acoustic guitar, but you may want to focus on learning guitar tab, more than you might with acoustic.
Depending on your play style and the music you want to play, tab is going to be your best friend when self teaching electric guitar.
Scales should be the first thing you work on, once you get the hang of them learn a few fun short riffs, and practice them until you’ve mastered them.
How easy is it to self teach guitar
Self teaching guitar isn’t easy, but it doesn’t have to difficult either. A good guitar instructor will help you knock any bad habits early on in your guitar playing.
Ensuring you’re not developing any bad habits by recording yourself playing and comparing it to youtube videos showing basic skills will be a big help early on.
Other than that, you need to want to practice and work on challenging materials to continue to progress.
If you can get past those hang ups, you will be well on your way to self teaching guitar.
I always recommend creating your own “setlist” a list of 5-10 songs that you want to learn. Work on learning each song, in full, until you can play through the whole set list by heart.
It’s a great way to learn the basics, endurance and get a variety of songs under your belt early. Plus you’ll be playing songs you enjoy!
Is it bad to self teach guitar
No, it is not bad to self teach guitar. Without a teacher to correct bad habit you will want to ensure you are practicing good form and challenging material.
Ideally, ask someone you know to critique your guitar playing every couple weeks early on. Hopefully they’ll be able to correct any missteps early on.
Motivation can also dwindle if you aren’t learning new and exciting material regularly. Set up a mini curriculum for yourself, to ensure you force yourself to progress to more challenging material, over time.
How long does it take to self teach guitar
Self teaching guitar will likely take a little longer at first, than if you take lessons. Within 2-3 months you will have the basics down, after a year of playing most guitarist will have rock solid fundamentals.
After you get the fundamentals down, it’s entirely up to the guitarist. Some guitar players learn more and progress further in 3 years, than players who have been noodling around for 15 years.
This also comes down to what you want out of guitar. If the most you want to do is strum songs around the campfire, you might stop self teaching at the 1 year mark, and play at that level for the rest of your life. Nothing wrong with that!
Others will get addicted to learning new complex material that they can’t keep up with at first, but can master in a few weeks of practice.
Learning guitar is different for everyone as everyone wants to get something different out of it.
The good news is that whether you are self taught, or taking lessons you can only progress as fast as you’re willing to practice and learn.
A teacher isn’t going to grantee you learn guitar faster. They can help you progress quicker, yes, but without the student motivated to learn, they won’t progress.
This means that so long as you apply yourself and stay motivated, self teaching guitar can mean you progress faster than someone taking lessons.
It’s up to the student far more than the teacher, doesn’t matter if you have an instructor or self teaching guitar.
Is it better to take guitar lessons or teach yourself
Typically, guitar lessons will make you learn guitar faster than if you teach yourself. Bad habits will be corrected and appropriately challenging material will be practiced.
Having an experience, advanced guitarist helping you learn is just obviously going to make you a better guitar player, there’s no way around it.
How much better still depends on you and your motivation to practice and take in what’s being presented by the teacher, whether the teacher is you or someone else.
Personally, I took guitar lessons for five years. After that I self taught myself everything new I learned.
While I enjoy learning on my own, I still find myself in situations where it would expedite things by having a teacher.
I’ve also gone to specialized guitar teachers for a set of 4-12 lesson blocks to pick up skills in different areas of guitar, where I’m unfamiliar.
Learning jazz was a foreign language to me even after 10 years of playing guitar. So I found an awesome jazz guitarist and took a dozen lessons with them to introduce me to the genre.
You can do similar things with other skills you want to learn like theory, classical guitar, metal, or specific skills.
Don’t get hung up on being either self taught, or a guitar student, you can and probably should be both.
Want to learn how to shred? Take 6 lessons from a instructor who plays metal. Space the lessons out over the course of three months and focus on learning a new style of guitar.
Lessons don’t need to be weekly, or continually on-going for years. take a few lessons, and stop if you like.
Learning guitar never needs to be rigid.
Why is learning guitar so hard
If you’re finding it hard to learn guitar you should examine the material you’re playing. Likely, it is too hard for you, and you can’t keep up, or too easy and you aren’t building your skills.
Appropriately challenging material is the most important part of learning how to play guitar.
Make sure you enjoy what you’re learning, but also know it needs to challenge you enough that you improve your overall guitar skills by practicing it.
Can I learn guitar at 40
Yes, anyone at any age can learn to play guitar. The first and hardest thing you need to get past is your age.
Your first few practice sessions aren’t going to sound good or be easy, and this has nothing to do with your age.
It’s because you’re not good a guitar, because you don’t know how to play guitar. Every single guitarist ever was at that point. Yes, some people pick it up quicker than others, but you can’t attribute that to age.
Not to be harsh, but if you say I’m too old to learn guitar, you’re wrong, anyone can learn so long as you’re willing.
The older we get the less willing we are to practice things that are out of our comfort zone. This is especially true in music.
Is it easier to self teach guitar or piano
Piano will be easier to learn initially, where as guitar will be more difficult to learn early on, but become easier as you go.
Beginner guitar is a little awkward as both arms are doing a different type of motion, where as beginner piano you are doing the same motion on both hands.
Once you progress past the beginner stages, piano typically becomes more complex and theory heavey. Self teaching guitar becomes easier as you become accustomed to the instrument.