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Getting the Most Out of Your Guitar Teacher

Do this if you want to progress quickly with your guitar lessons

As we have discussed in other articles on this site, live on-on-one training with a good instructor is the best way to progress in your guitar playing as efficiently as possible. The reasons are plentiful: immediate feedback, the ability to learn at your own pace, and that tangible feeling you get of working alongside a mentor. These are among the foremost reasons for choosing this method over others.

Today we are going to go over several things that will maximize your guitar training.

Choose your teacher wisely

Unless you live in a very small town, you will most likely be able to choose from a number of gifted guitar instructors in your area. There are several things to consider when making a choice.

  • Are they proficient, or at least conversant in the style of music you wish to learn? (If they specialize in your chosen style, that is a plus.)
  • What is their reputation?
  • Can they work with your schedule?
  • Are they affordable? (This was put at the bottom for a reason. Don’t let your finances be the primary reason for choosing one instructor over another.)

Please consider that this is not grade school. If you’re not happy with a teacher, you’re not stuck with them. Move on until you find one who is best suited for you.

Ask the bold questions

Speaking of grade school, do you remember a time when you were afraid to ask your teacher a question for fear of being thought a fool? Chances are it would have been fine to ask. In musical training, it is no different. This is your time, don’t be shy! Teachers love it when you ask a lot of questions. It means that you are paying attention. Remember, your instructor is not a mind-reader. He or she may reasonably assume you understand something when you don’t. Never leave your learning to chance.

Whatever you do, show respect, but don’t fear their “authority.” They typically don’t want such power assigned to them. Besides, you are paying them. This means they are working for you. Understand that they teach music because they love it. Respect that, and they will respect you.

Give yourself some slack

Please be patient with yourself. Unless you are a prodigy (and those are few and far between), it will take time to master your instrument. You will make mistakes, and that is fine. Remember, your guitar heroes had to bumble and stumble on their way to mastery too. You should expect nothing different for yourself.


This is where many students fall short and waste time. Listen carefully to what your instructor has to say. Ask clarifying questions. If you are learning a particular physical technique, demonstrate it so that you can show that you understand what they are saying.

Phone Glenn Sutton at: 619-306-3664.

Services include:

  • Acoustic Guitar Lessons
  • Electric Guitar Lessons
  • Bass Guitar Instruction
  • Classical Guitar
  • Spanish Guitar
  • Learning to Write Music
  • Advanced Improv Techniques
  • Performance Techniques
  • TABS or sheet music



  • Rock
  • Classic
  • Folk
  • Jazz
  • Improv
  • Blues
  • R&B/funk
  • Metal


  • Rancho Bernardo
  • San Diego
  • Poway
  • Rancho Penasquitos
  • 4S Ranch