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> How I Suddenly Learned To Play Faster And Cleaner
29a
post Mar 31 2009, 11:45 PM
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Some days ago I've noticed a problem with my playing. It was mostly eye to hand coordination. I had to stare at the fretboard to play! So I started to close my eyes while practicing. At first I often fretted the wrong notes and it was quite frustrating. But after just a few days (I think it was 3 days) of doing this as part of my daily practice I've noticed big progress with my playing. I think I broke my speed blockade because of this! As most of you guys probably know - it's a wonderful feeling to break such a blockade!

So if you (or one of your students) are constantly looking at the fretboard why playing I'd strongly suggest you to just try to close your eyes while playing!

Hope that helps some others on their journey into guitar land!

- Jonas


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Emir Hot
post Mar 31 2009, 11:48 PM
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I agree that this method is very helpful although there is nothing wrong if you're looking at what you're playing smile.gif I am glad you've made it.


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Joe Kataldo
post Mar 31 2009, 11:52 PM
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Thanks for sharing your experience, you highlighted a good point


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29a
post Apr 1 2009, 12:04 AM
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QUOTE (Emir Hot @ Apr 1 2009, 12:48 AM) *
I agree that this method is very helpful although there is nothing wrong if you're looking at what you're playing smile.gif

Sure, but I think you (or more likely I) shouldn't be using your eyes to coordinate your fingers. My point is not that one should always play with closed eyes. I think it's very important to watch and check everything while practicing. But rather one should be able to play with closed eyes.

Cheers,
Jonas


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Pedja Simovic
post Apr 1 2009, 12:46 AM
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This is known as visualization technique. I use it with all my students, it boosts learning pace and experience by milestone.

Good job man !


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UncleSkillet
post Apr 1 2009, 01:22 AM
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Congrats!

I also find this very useful especially when I'm practicing AP or a lick with a metronome and trying to gain speed. It helps me focus on the timing and how clean things sound also.


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Déjà vu
post Apr 1 2009, 01:52 AM
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It was my Geometry teacher last year (brilliant guitarist), who told me that when you rely on your vision while you are playing, you are using an unnecessary amount of your "senses." When your hand itself becomes familiar with the "motions", and when you close your eyes, you can then truly focus on what "sounds" best (I.E. Fixing all buzzes, unwanted ringing).

I'm glad you made this discovery on your own. I cannot agree with you more! This is THE best way to practice (the most effective, in my opinion).
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Evil_Invader
post Apr 1 2009, 02:25 AM
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I use that too while praticing for a while now.

If I feel that I'm not ''on it'' at rehearshal or live I often close my eyes for a second and then focus more on playing ''right''. It's funny because people are like ''wow he can play with his eyes closed'' while I do that because I had a doubt for a moment.


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jdriver
post Apr 1 2009, 02:48 AM
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Pedja is right... Visualization is a very powerful tool to help you learn. Go through the motions in your mind over and over, and it's amazing, you find you can play it.

Secondly, one of the ways I realized I was improving was when I suddenly could improvise Major scale over a practice loop without looking. Very good feeling. smile.gif


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kahall
post Apr 1 2009, 03:34 AM
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QUOTE (29a @ Mar 31 2009, 05:45 PM) *
[..]

So if you (or one of your students) are constantly looking at the fretboard why playing I'd strongly suggest you to just try to close your eyes while playing!

Hope that helps some others on their journey into guitar land!

- Jonas


I've had that work for me as well. Especially when going from one end of the fret board to the other. If I am looking at the board I almost never go to the correct placement, if I am not looking I almost always hit the mark. Weird.


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Pragomatic
post Apr 1 2009, 03:39 AM
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I normally look at a mirror instead of the fretboard because I am SHOCKINGLY HANDSOME and can't take my eyes off myself.

I'll advance this one step further - practicing without your guitar can also help a great deal. I've often struggled with a particular run and spent free thinking time while driving and such just repeating the run and the fingering in my head. When I pick the guitar back up often there is usually a noticeable improvement.
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Ivan Mihaljevic
post Apr 1 2009, 08:32 AM
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Never tried this approach, but if it works for you, go for it...


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Marcus Lavendell
post Apr 1 2009, 08:53 AM
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I do this all the time, not just while practicing. I think it's easier to get in the "feel" when the eyes are closed.

Great advise! smile.gif


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Chris Evans
post Apr 1 2009, 09:03 AM
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yea if it works for you then do it! smile.gif

Like Marcus I tend to close my eyes more for feel, I look at the fretboard a lot but a little like driving I`m not always looking at what I`m playing, I`m looking ahead at the next notes I`m going to be playing, if playing a 3nps run accross several strings then I`ll be looking at the first note I`m going to play on the next string, if that makes any sense at all? laugh.gif


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superize
post Apr 1 2009, 09:17 AM
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If i play a difficult part i always end up looking at what i am playing but when i play stuff i know by heart i dont have to look.....

I think its great that you can play without looking because then you dont think about where you put your hands it comes automatticly

Congtraz on the progress


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djohnneay
post Apr 1 2009, 11:04 AM
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Congrats man !

I think it is very useful to be able to play without looking. I try to do this myself, but when I try, I mess up tongue.gif
Guess practicing is the anwser to that...


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Artemus
post Apr 1 2009, 11:18 AM
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QUOTE (Pragomatic @ Apr 1 2009, 03:39 AM) *
I normally look at a mirror instead of the fretboard because I am SHOCKINGLY HANDSOME and can't take my eyes off myself.


laugh.gif All my mirrors crack when I look at them sad.gif laugh.gif

Regarding not looking at the fretboard - it can only be a good thing. As long as I don't have to jump around to much and change hand position, closing my eyes when playing works a treat. I can focus on minimising my hand movements, the cleanliness of my playing and my overall sound. However when jumping up and down the fretboard I need to look so as to target the notes I need to land on.


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David Wallimann
post Apr 1 2009, 12:05 PM
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Thanks a lot for that tip man!


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Pavlov
post Apr 1 2009, 12:09 PM
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QUOTE (Pragomatic @ Apr 1 2009, 04:39 AM) *
I normally look at a mirror instead of the fretboard because I am SHOCKINGLY HANDSOME and can't take my eyes off myself.



Such is the curse of being really, really, really, really, really, ridiculously good looking.
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Trond Vold
post Apr 1 2009, 12:10 PM
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Thats a really good advice!


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