Why Practice Scales on Guitar - 304
If you are new to scales or if you've been learning them and haven't seen the benefits from the work you've put in, Today's episode is for you!
▶▶ FREE WORKSHEET - Learn the 4 scale patterns that are in all your favorite songs - across the fretboard!
Why Practicing Scales on the Guitar is Essential: My Top 5 Reasons
If you're new to scales and wondering what all the fuss is about, or if you've been learning them but haven't seen the benefits, this post is for you! As a guitar teacher, I'm often asked about the importance of practicing scales, and I'm here to share my top five reasons why they're essential for every guitar player.
Reason #1: Scales set you up for success.
Scales are the foundation of music. Chords are made up of scale notes, so the better you understand scales, the better equipped you are to understand chord construction and progressions. Plus, scales make up two-thirds of the musical triangle: melody and harmony both rely on scales at their core. Understanding scales is crucial for creating a solid musical idea or performance.
Reason #2: Get out of the copycat rut.
Practicing scales on the guitar helps you take the first steps toward freedom. The big guitar lie is that you have to know how to play exactly like a certain song, and the more songs you can mimic, the better player you are. But that's not true! Becoming an artist means developing your own unique style. The more you understand scales, the more your own ideas can flow, and the more you'll be able to say something unique with your playing.
Reason #3: Technique.
If you're struggling with playing single notes or your hands and wrists get sore, regular scale practice can make all the difference in your technique. Using scales for technique exercises is extremely efficient because it works on hand-eye coordination, dexterity, building your ear, phrasing, strong and weak notes, your five positions, and playing over chord changes.
Reason #4: Sequences.
Breaking up your scales in a systematic way with sequences is a great warm-up and a fantastic melodic device that you can use in your everyday improvisation and composition. Sequences are when you break up the scale going up a certain amount and then back some. It's a way to create interest out of something that's not very interesting and a great tool to have.
Reason #5: Visual reinforcement.
When you finally master scale patterns on the guitar, something really cool happens: it frees your mind from the stress of trying to remember these things and gives it time to think of other things. You'll be able to play scale patterns on autopilot, which means you'll have extra brain time to look at and listen to what you're playing. This visual reinforcement will help you memorize the patterns better and faster.
BONUS tip: Supercharge your progress.
If you want to ignite your musicianship and throw gasoline on your progress as you practice your guitar scale patterns, here's a super-secret and super-easy tip: record yourself playing the scale patterns you're practicing, then listen back to the recording and focus on what you want to improve. This will help you identify where you're struggling and what you need to work on, which will supercharge your progress and take your playing to the next level.
In conclusion, practicing scales on the guitar is essential for every guitar player, regardless of genre or style. It will increase your dexterity, understanding of the fretboard, knowledge of music, and performance on the guitar. So, if you're not already practicing your scales regularly, start today!
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