Before you attempt any guitar piece its essential that you do a few hand exercises. Simple exercises will prevent you from straining any muscles, tendons or joints. This should always be done before any lengthy guitar sessions either practising or performing.
You should make guitar exercises part of your day to day practice regime and it will help to dispel toxins that can build up in your muscles.
Practice rotating your wrists, elbows and shoulders which will help keep the joints and muscles loose. Be careful not to hold or force any stretches for too long.
Hand Positions – Fret Hand
Most novice guitar players have a quite limited hand span and will feel discomfort in the fretting hand. To alleviate this there are various hand exercises that can reduce tightness.
Try opening the hand wide open and stretch the fingers apart , then gently flex all the fingers against a wall or table whilst keeping the wrist clear of the surface. This exercise should be followed up by tightly closing the hand and allowing the fingers to flick out rapidly as the hand is opened.
There are plenty of hand exercises on You Tube. If you are serious about learning Rock Guitar then its essential that you include hand exercises into your every day routine. Over a period of time using hand exercises like these will help you to play scales,melodies and riffs with much greater ease.
Practice Vs Playing?
The boundaries are usually blurred between playing the guitar and practising the guitar. It is important to differentiate between the two. It is all to easy to slip into playing things that you know well in practice sessions. This will not always improve your playing. Practice sessions should be kept to learning new guitar playing techniques and should be left to learning new things.
Your practice sessions should be kept down to about fourty minutes or so. After this time it is easy for concentration to slip. If you do have more time then always take breaks of around twenty minutes or so. This will give your muscles a chance to recover.
A good structure for a rock guitar practice session would consist of some of the following:
· Practice Scales – Try some scales you already know and then try a new one. Alternatively play a scale you know at different fret positions.
· Chords – Play some rock chords you know and learn some new ones. Try to do some simple strumming exercises utilising both.
· Improvising – Have some fun and improvise a solo over a backing track.
· Finally – Play through some songs you have learnt and then try a new one. Try to attempt something new each time you practice.
Try sticking to a routine and you will definitely see progress in your ability.