A practice system that will save you time and help you to really enjoy practice


A practice system that will save you time and help you to really enjoy practice

One thing I find fascinating about our behaviour towards practice is that we very often know what we should do, but we don't do it.

Basic fundamentals (tone, rhythm, legato, dynamics, etc.) are very often neglected in practice, even though we know they're some of the most important facets of playing.

I want to give you a system of practicing that can make working on the fundamentals an automated process. This will eventually turn into a habit, which means that you won't need to rely on a system.

This is the system that I have used everyday for years. I've experimented with a lot of ways to practice and find this the most effective. I've given this to students and colleagues and they testify at how well it works for them. 

Practice System: 
1. Turn off all possible distractions (phone, tablet, computer, etc.)
2. Set a timer for 45 minutes
3. Give yourself 15 minutes to work on the basics
4. Give yourself 30 minutes to work on pieces and more advanced things
5. Once the timer chimes, stop practicing immediately
6. Reward yourself with a nice 5 - 10 minute break. Do something fun, relaxing and non-music related.  

All of these steps are important, taking one of them out or altering them drastically will take away the system's effectiveness. 
I'll break this down a little and talk about why this system is so effective. 

Distractions suck and they happen very often in this age of digital machines that constantly beep. By taking these distractions away, it allows us to give our 100% attention to our given task/s. It gives us a peace of mind that we won't get led on to answering emails or taking calls or seeing what our friends posted on Facebook. Let's face it, do those really need to be addressed immediately? Will it really do any harm to wait 45 minutes max to answer that email or phone call or check that Facebook post?

I recommend doing this during times of the day where you're less likely to get really important emails or phone calls. I also recommend doing this for general health reasons and happiness. Set aside times during the day where you switch off all distractions; TV, phone, tablet - all of it, it will take away stress and make you a happier person. 

Setting a timer is honestly one of the most valuable habits I've learned in regards to practice. It makes us value the time we have and strive to make the most of it. I've found 45 minutes to be an ideal amount, it's not too long to create fatigue or lose concentration and not too short, which allows us to get into a flow, get warmed up and have enough time to work with ideas. 

I've found that working on the basics for 15 minutes before I work on pieces to be golden. This is like athletes who have routines or warm ups before a big event.

It's important to stop when the timer chimes so that we don't get into the habit of playing past our allotted time. 

Rewarding yourself is more important than you might think. It makes you addicted to the thing you just did to reward yourself. You want to get addicted to practicing, right? 

Try this system right now, today! But also, please be patient and give it at least a few days to really see the benefits. Let me know how it worked for you. 



About Daniel Nistico - the Resourceful Guitarist

The Resourceful Guitarist aims to help make you a resourceful guitarist by giving you easy access to free resources, pieces, and information that isn't easily available but can have powerful impacts on your playing. 

I also aim to promote guitar music that is obscure today, but in my opinion, deserves much greater attention and recognition. This is stuff that you could easily spend hundreds, or even thousands of dollars on - scores, method books, recordings, lessons, etc.

The work I do is to search thoroughly for exceptional resources and promote them via writing, recordings, and videos.

I am truly passionate about this cause, so I keep this service free to you and have no ads. I pour many hours each day into this - in researching, practicing, recording, producing videos, making booklets, translating, and writing.

If you find value in what I do and would like to donate to this cause, then please consider becoming a patron and giving a recurring donation each month. These funds will assist me in website maintenance, video production, audio recordings, access to libraries, and more! Ultimately, you will be part of the mission to spread these old guitar treasures to people around the world. You will help to expand the guitar's cultural borders and ensure that its important history doesn't lay dormant.

For more information, please click here:

Daniel Nistico is available for private guitar instruction in Melbourne.

Please call him on 0455 274 744 for more information and to arrange a free trial lesson, or
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