How to schedule your weekly guitar practice so you can grow efficiently as a musician and stay in top form.
“Repeating something many times doesn’t necessarily mean improving it.”
When you’re on tour or working in the studio, you’re likely doing fine in terms of performing and creating. You’re probably playing at least couple of hours on a regular basis and practicing with your band more than 3 times a week.
But what if you practice with your band only once a week, and the rest of the time work a daytime job that leaves you with only an hour a day to play? You still want to be in “ready to go” shape for a sudden audition opportunity, gig, or recording session.
The fact is, your ‘creative muscle’ is asleep if you’re not performing or composing every day.
The good news is that only an hour a day (5-6 days a week) can be enough to not only keep you in top musical form, but also to help you develop your skills and meet your performance goals. The key to success lies in diversity and switching your focus every day.
Of course, before every guitar practice, you should start with a warm-up and stretching. But you have only two parts of your body to warm up: the left and right hand. We already discussed the 3-minute left hand warm-up routine. Next time, we’ll talk about the right hand.
Here’s my personal weekly guitar routine:
Monday – Technical arsenal. Scales. Vibrato. Arpeggios. Fast technical riffs and leads. Metronome exercises. New tricks and techniques.
Tuesday – Improvisation. Performance Dynamics. Signature Style.
Wednesday – Technical arsenal (see above)
Thursday – Showcase Perform track list while standing in front of the mirror. (Necessary if you play many shows. Can be replaced with Improvisation session.)
Friday – Technical arsenal
Saturday – Acoustic Session. Fingerstyle. Songwriting. Singing (optional)
The schedule can vary, depending on how many band practices you have this week, or if you’re learning/composing new material or preparing for something important. Again, you can create your own schedule according to your music goals. The point is to switch your focus every day and keep developing in many directions at the same time. This will also help you maintain interest with your routine and not be bored by having to repeat the same one every day. I hope it helps!