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How to Make What You Practice Applicable in Real Life


As a serious guitar player and musician, you can guarantee that you will never run out of things to practice. The art of playing guitar can be broken down into various categories, and each of those into more sub-categories. Focusing on a number of categories at once can be overwhelming. Because of this, each of these areas of practice need to be focused on in isolation until they can be played at a comfortable level. One aspect of practice which is often overlooked is integration of techniques. Think of this as the glue that binds everything together. All these techniques and areas of practice will be of no use if the only way you are able to play them is in isolation. In order to make what you practice usable, you must be able to transition between various techniques seamlessly and in real time.

The general structure of a song typically consists of an intro, verse, pre-chorus, chorus, bridge and solo sections. Each of these sections demand from the guitarist different techniques. In a real life situation, you need to go in and out of these sections using various techniques comfortably. This is why the practice of integration of techniques is crucial for your playing to be applicable in real life.

For you to start working on integration, you must first be able to execute these techniques you wish to integrate in isolation and at a comfortable level. For example, if you want to integrate palm muting and arpeggios, you must first be able to play each of those in isolation comfortably. Then, pick one chord to go over those two techniques on. Do this over a drum track or metronome so that you can keep in time when transitioning between the two techniques. Start at a comfortable tempo. Make sure the transitions between the techniques are smooth. As this becomes easier to execute, make the transitions between these techniques quicker (changing every two beats instead of four). Then, add more chords to the progression. Be your own critic and be realistic about how soon to add more challenging levels to this exercise. Pay attention to every detail about the transition in terms of sound and how relaxed you are when doing the transition. It is important to understand that these exercises take time to be integrated into your playing, so be patient and spend some time with them.

Once you feel completely relaxed when transitioning between these techniques, do the same with another two, or add a third technique to the existing two. It is up to you how you want to increase the challenge of these integration exercises. The goal here is to eventually be able to transition between any technique seamlessly and comfortably. This approach can be applied to absolutely any technique. Some will be easier to integrate than others. Spend more time on those which are more difficult to integrate.

This is the key to make your playing usable in real life. Practicing in this way will speed up your journey towards guitar mastery!!!


Learning to play guitar on your own can be frustrating and challenging, especially if you don’t know what to do. Having a great teacher makes the whole process more fun, enjoyable and gets you real results fast.

Solve your guitar-related problems at GuitarKL, in Kuala Lumpur, MALAYSIA. Visit to become an awesome guitar player

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