-

Krispy Kreme on balanced practice

 

Vegetables, proteins, doughnuts. Now there’s a food pyramid to get behind!

As ridiculous as this quote sounds, there’s actually some deep truth within it. Or at least when we use it as a metaphor for guitar….

In our musical lives we have 2 main elements: practice and play.

  • Play is for fun.
  • Practice is to get better.

Too much play, and we find ourselves in a rut, doing the same things over and over.

Too much practice, and we risk feeling overworked and underpaid.

Practice should focus on solving specific, timely problems:

  • master this right-hand pattern,
  • connect these notes smoothly,
  • switch between these chords in rhythm,
  • etc.

Practice is work. It demands focus and concentration. It takes all our attention, discipline and willpower.

And that’s great. Life is more meaningful with a challenging pursuit. Days are more satisfying when we get in a good, deep practice.

But sometimes we just need a doughnut.

All work and no play makes Jack a dull boy. And sometimes, the best course of action is to let go of all practice concerns and just take the guitar out for a spin.

  • Play some old tunes at top speeds, never mind the mistakes.
  • Strum and sing a song.
  • Sight-read music you have no intention of learning.
  • Lean back on the couch with legs crossed and noodle around.
  • Do all the things we work so hard not to do in practice.

Just as doughnuts are a normal part of a healthy, balanced diet, goofing off and tinkering around are healthy parts of a balanced guitar practice. Maybe not every day, but when we feel the craving, there’s no harm in caving.


Doughnuts are a normal part of a healthy, balanced diet.

Brooke Smith, Krispy Kreme spokeswoman.




allen mathews classical guitar

Hi, I’m Allen Mathews. 

I started as a folk guitarist, then fell in love with classical guitar in my 20’s.  Despite a lot of practice and work with teachers, I still couldn’t get my music to flow well.  I struggled with excess tension.  My music sounded forced.  And my hands and body were sore after playing.  I was frequently frustrated, and couldn’t see the way forward.  Then I studied with two stellar teachers –  one focused on the technical, and one on the musical.  In time, I came to discover a fundamental set of formulas and movements. These unlocked my playing, and brought new life and enjoyment to my practice. Now I help other guitarists find more comfort and flow in their music, so they play more beautifully.


Hi Allen, just wanted to provide some feedback. Since I've started doing the exercises [in The Woodshed program] my guitar is sounding a lot better, with fuller sound, less effort. Its as if I bought a new guitar or got a new pair of hands (or both). Amazing my friend. Thank you!


-Nusret Aydemir

Thanks to you (you are my only teacher) in only a few months I've gone from very basic beginner pieces to having just completed learning Bach's Gavottes 1&2 in good form and execution. As a non-classical electric guitarist who has always used a pick and never his fingers, this has been no small feat!


-Gregg Olson


Become a Member and Play More, Beautifully!


“The basics are the basics, and you can’t beat the basics.”
Charles Poliquin  

Join the program that takes you from the beginning fundamentals to advanced mastery, so you…

  • Move your hands safely and fluidly

  • Enjoy fulfilling practices and meaningful work

  • Play beautifully with expression and flow

Click the button to take a step towards an organized, effective guitar practice. >>>



Featured Courses

$39
jesu bach classical guitar

Jesu, Joy of Man’s Desiring – Bach

One of the best loved of all classical pieces.

See more...

$39
read music guitar high positions notes

Play and Read Music in the Higher Positions

Learn to read music and identify notes on the entire neck.

See more...

$39
how to play segovia scales

Better Technique, with “Segovia’s Favorite Scales”

Detailed explorations of this popular technical tool.

See more...

« » page 1 / 2

See more…