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Electronic Platform for Adult Learning in Europe



Why learning the Guitar can be good for you

by Michael Beech
Language: EN

/en/file/michael-beech-blog-post-jpgMIchael Beech blog post .jpg

Why Learning the Guitar can be good for you

The guitar is a very beautiful instrument to learn but can be hellishly challenging. We all love a challenge don’t we?


I was sat with one of my students the other day and the realisation came to us both: we are actually trying to decode and master what is essentially a piece of wood with a grid of 120 unmarked unnamed musical notes, and that’s not even the full range of the guitar at 20 frets across six strings. The possibilities with the guitar are infinite and the chordal variations one can come up with are hundreds of different chords and yet we still rely on the same old variety.

Playing the guitar, or indeed any musical instrument, for that matter, has been scientifically proven (through various research undertaken) to be beneficial for you - and this is across all ages. Whether you are young or old. 

Playing a Musical Instrument can increase the capacity of your memory; Telegraph online published an article which said "New Research suggests that regularly playing an instrument changes the shape and the power of the brain and may be used in therapy to improve cognitive skills".

Learning the guitar, or other music instrument, can help you improve your Time Management and Organisational skills, after all if you are going to master this difficult instrument you need to organise your practice time effectively to get the most from it. Planning various challenges to get you to the next level supports you in organising your learning. It can be said, that even with a Guitar Tutor like myself, you still need to take self ownership to a large degree, of your learning & mastery, of this beautiful instrument.

Playing a musical instrument can improve your skills as a team player: Playing with other musicians, listening to them, and working to produce good music develops your team working and people skills. Even if you are just working with your guitar teacher, and not quite yet in a band, you still need to work together as a team. Guitar teachers themselves need this team work ethic; a good teacher listens carefully to his students and picks up skills and ideas too!

Learning the guitar can teach you perseverance. It takes lots and lots of time to learn the guitar, and you have to be patient and perservere. Often playing a tune the first time round does not come out exactly right, and so you need to hone your techniques and playing to get it right. Perseverance is a good trait that will stand you in good stead for other areas in your life!

And here is an interesting one, which I chime in with learning a musical instrument can actually help you with...mathematics!

Yes, to learn a musical tune, it is beneficial (but not always essential) to read music or learn from guitar tabs. By doing so, there is the requirement for counting notes and rhythms. In the case of guitar tabs, locating notes from numbers on the tab to ‘decode’ the guitar, to play the song in question. As a Qualified Accountant, Music might have had a helping hand in helping me with my Math!

Learning to play guitar, or another instrument, exposes you to Cultural History. Music has a rich history whether it’s guitar, bass, keyboards, or orchestral instruments, music mirrors a time and a place and is woven into the fabric of the environment it came from. There is a background and backdrop of social history to a lot of music. If we look at the example of the Blues, this has a big aspect of social history linked to people, geography, and an era. Diving into the world of guitar musical history can be fascinating. 

See my website for regular music education updates.

Have a great week

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