20 Guitar Techniques You Can Practice To Improve Guitar Playing


Learning to play the guitar is now so much more convenient than ever before. You can teach yourself from the basics to advanced tricks that only the masters of the axe know. 

Forget pricey guitar lessons from a professional because you can get the same guitar lessons from equally-gifted guitarists without spending a dime.Check out these 20 guitar techniques that you should know to improve your guitar playing.

1. The First Steps

Every beginner guitarist needs to know how to hold the instrument properly for optimal guitar-playing performance and maximum comfort. You will also learn the basics of pick-holding and strumming to get your guitar-playing on a roll. This technique is also a good introduction to open chords.

 2. Basic Scales

One of the fascinating things to watch among guitarists is their finger play. Electrifying guitar solos would be impossible if the player does not have a basic understanding of musical scales. This technique familiarizes you with two basic scales that will prepare you to play rhythmic and synchronized guitar solos.

 3. Guitar Tuning

You can never create amazing guitar sounds with a poorly-tuned instrument. That is why every guitarist should learn how to tune his instrument. You should be able to produce a melodic and harmonious sound coming from the guitar strings if you tune your guitar correctly.

 4. Harmonizing Melodies

Guitars make heavenly music, but only if you know the correct way of harmonizing melodies. Harmonization allows you to play at least two notes simultaneously to produce a single sound. Familiarize yourself with harmonization tactics to help you get better with your guitar-playing.

 5. Understanding Keys, Scales, and Progressions

While guitars can make beautiful music on their own, they will sound better if played with other musical instruments. Unfortunately, instruments often play different scales. You will also need to understand basic chord progressions to help you in your rhythm. This learning technique should give you a heads up.

 6. Reading Guitar Tabs

Have you seen a guitar tablature? You will notice that it is different from a traditional music sheet. You will not see the conventional music symbols. Only numbers and letters. Every guitar player should know how to read a guitar tab because it can improve your fingerstyle.

 7. Understanding Major and Minor Chords

There are hundreds of guitar chords, like this G chord. If you look closely, you will notice only two main chords: major and minor. It is easy to differentiate the two. A small letter ‘m’ after the key indicates a minor chord – for example, Em for E-minor and Am for A-minor.

 8. Arpeggios and Fingerpicking

Strumming your guitar is cool. Playing the fingerstyle is wicked cool! That is why guitar players always make it a point to advance to this stage of their guitar learning. Not only will you learn arpeggio basics. The activity can also be excellent finger training exercises in flexibility and coordination.

 9. Learning the Vibrato

You are not a guitar player if you do not know how to execute at least a couple of vibrato techniques. It allows you to create different sound modulations, opening an infinite number of guitar performance possibilities.

 10.Playing Your Guitar by Ear

You may already know how to read tablature. However, what if you do not have any music sheet to follow? Will you still be able to play the song you just heard? Playing by ear is a skill that takes time. It would be best if you start with this technique.

 11.Wide Fingering

It is easy to play a fast song on your guitar if the frets stay close to one another. Unfortunately, the most fantastic guitar riffs often use widely-spaced frets. It is like stretching your fingers to the hilt. This technique should help you feel comfortable with this technique.

 12.Playing the Solo

 Ask any concert-goer what he loved the most about the performance, and he will single out the guitar solo. It is every guitar player’s dream to perform like Slash or Bryan May, electrifying the crowd with their guitar improvisations.

 13.Learning the Power Chords

Almost all newbie guitarists feel intimidated by the mere mention of ‘power chords’. This technique should help bust the myth about this two-note guitar chord, paving the way to more awesome rock, jazz, country, and reggae songs.

 14.Finger Nubbing

Popularized by Buckethead, the finger nubbing technique is in every rock star’s guitar playing arsenal. The technique calls for tapping the strings using up to four fingers, producing a lightning-quick mechanical sound.

 15.Metal Techniques

Take your pick from pinch harmonics to economy picking and sweep picking. These techniques are all you need to jump-start your journey into the exciting world of metal. Who knows? You might be the next Black Sabbath or Iron Maiden.

 16.Tremolo Picking

Most people think about tremolo as a fast guitar playing technique. While this may be true, playing the technique alongside other techniques can push your fingers to their limit. This technique should help you get in-rhythm and tight tremolo picks.

 17.Simple Box Patterns

Want to speed up your guitar playing? It would help if you learned the box pattern. There are several styles you can learn. However, it would be best to start with the simple ones to get the feel.

18.All about Barre Chords

There are open chords, and there are barre chords. The term may sound so alien for beginners that they no longer want to learn more about it. Demystify barre chords with this technique.

19.Improving the Fretting Hand

Time does not guarantee the perfect fretting hand. You need to continually reassess your technique to further improve your guitar playing. It is all about making conscious adjustments to become a better guitar player.

20.Two-handed Tapping

Not many novice guitar players know this technique. However, it is one of the most exciting things you can add to your guitar playing arsenal. It goes without saying that you already have a firm grasp of the basics, including arpeggios and palm-muting.

Charles Vallena
Author: Charles Vallena

Charles Vallena is founder of Guitar Junky, an online website for aspiring musicians. A musician turned digital marketer, he has 10 years of experience in digital marketing, where was able to grow several brands in different industries including coffee, music, outdoor and lifestyle.