Making the decision to pursue guitar lessons is an exciting prospect. However, as the first session approaches, many students find themselves wondering: what do you need to know before your first guitar lesson?

What To Expect of Your First Guitar Lesson

At Sage Music, we offer a unique approach to our lessons that is unlike any other music school. Here, we’ll offer an overview of what you need to know before you take your first guitar lesson. Don’t worry, it’s not scary at all! Reading through these tips will help make your first lesson as enjoyable as possible.

What are your goals?

One of the first important things to know before you take your first guitar lesson is what you hope to gain from your studies. During your first lesson, you’ll consult on this very subject with your teacher so that they can help create a customized study plan that will be aligned with your personal goals.

So, be sure to take a few minutes to consider what you hope to gain from your guitar lessons. Do you want to be able to jam out during camping trips? Or do you want to be able to play along with a group? Do you want to learn how to audition for a group or other music opportunity? Are you hoping to pursue music as a career? There’s no right or wrong here; just come up with an answer that is true to you.

Don’t worry about having all of the details ironed out, either. If you have general idea of what you want to get out of your music lessons, your teacher can help you to come up with specific smaller goals that will help you to get there. Your music teacher will ask you some questions and get to know you – and your musical aspirations – better, then they’ll design a plan and your lessons so that you’re always making progress toward those goals.

And if your goals change as time passes, that’s fine, too – and it’s to be expected. The more that you learn and grow as a musician, the better an idea you’ll have of just what you want to get out of your lessons. It’s all part of the process, and your teacher will always be happy to revisit your goals and restructure your lessons as your goals change.

What type of guitar lessons do you want to take?

Did you know that there’s more than just one style of guitar playing? At Sage Music, we offer guitar lessons in a variety of styles, including acoustic guitar lessons, electric guitar lessons, jazz guitar lessons and classical guitar lessons.

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To make the most of your guitar lessons, be sure to think about what type of lessons you’d like to take beforehand. This will help you choose the best teacher and course of study for you. And yes, you’re welcome to learn more than one style of music. The skills that you develop while focusing on your acoustic guitar lessons can transfer over to jazz guitar and make you a better guitarist, overall.

What materials do you need?

On the Sage Music website, our “Getting Started with Music Lessons” page offers information on this subject.

For example…what about the guitar? While it is best to bring your own guitar for lessons, if you do not have one, Sage Music does have several guitars available for students to use. We can also rent guitars to students who are not able to afford one right away yet want to play on a quality instrument. By consulting with the school beforehand, you can figure out the best solution for your situation.

If you don’t yet have your own guitar, don’t go out and buy one right before you start your lessons. Instead, talk with your teacher about the best type of guitar for your budget, the type of music you want to play, and even the size of your body. (Smaller children often do better learning on a smaller guitar before advancing to a full-size guitar once as they grow.) Your teacher can advise you about what to look for in your first guitar and can connect you to some trusted places where you can buy a quality instrument.

Scheduling

Figuring out what type of schedule you can commit to for guitar lessons is an important consideration before you begin lessons. If you really want to stick with your studies, you’ll really have to figure out a schedule for lessons that you can stick to. At Sage Music, we offer tuition packages starting at $207 per month, which includes 4 private lessons. You’ll want to make sure that you’re making the most of your investment by committing to a regular schedule!  Students who take weekly lessons make great progress. Students who take two lessons per week do the absolute best.

Sage Music has multiple locations to make scheduling and getting to your music lessons easier. Our first location is in Long Island City, Queens, while our second is in Greenpoint, Brooklyn. Lessons are scheduled ahead of time, and are offered on Mondays through Thursdays from 10 am to 9 pm, on Fridays from 10 am to 7 pm, and on Saturdays and Sundays from 9 am to 7 pm. There’s plenty of flexibility, so we should be able to work with your busy schedule.

Prior knowledge is not necessary

When you start your lessons at Sage Music, you don’t need to come in with a particular level of knowledge. While prior experience or knowledge won’t hurt, it’s not necessary to take guitar lessons at Sage Music. You can in fact be a complete beginner.

As you begin your lesson, your teacher will guide you through all the basics. This includes addressing posture, how to hold your instrument, and other key techniques before you even start strumming. Building your knowledge from the base up will help you form a strong playing foundation.

Be ready to do some work

While we want music lessons to be enjoyable and challenging, we also want you to progress, so be ready to do some work during and after your first guitar lessons. Your teacher will give you some practice assignments, and you’ll need to put in time and effort after your lessons to develop the skills that you were working on during your time with your teacher.

Practicing is an important part of becoming a musician, and if you’re new to music altogether, your teacher can help you to learn how to practice so you get the best results out of the time that you put in. Practicing doesn’t have to be unpleasant or a chore, but it does need to be part of your regular schedule, so make sure that you have time to commit to becoming a musician or to improving your skills. While there will definitely be challenges as you practice, you’ll also get to see the results and skills that you gain through this work. As you practice, you’ll discover more about how you learn, and your ability to practice will also improve.

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It’s ok to ask questions

There’s no need to be shy. If you have questions about your guitar lessons, ask away! Communication and community are part of the learning process at Sage Music. We want our school to provide an opening and welcome atmosphere to discover music on your terms. We want to be your guide, but are open to you discovering the process in your own unique way.

In fact, that’s how we train our teachers. Sage Music teachers are talented musicians and teachers when they come to us, but then we invest even more in training them to become even better teachers. Our teachers learn our unique ARPEGGIO ® lesson system, and they learn how to develop your lessons around your goals, your learning style, and your interests. This learning system creates structure and clarity, and is based on the science and psychology of learning. This means that our teachers understand how to teach in ways that make it easy for you to understand and learn, making your music lessons more enjoyable and successful, too.

This is just the beginning.

As your studies continue, you’ll feel a sense of accomplishment as you reach milestones in each lesson. You might decide to perform in one of the many recitals we offer, or participate in a jam session with your friends. Maybe you’ll audition for an ensemble or decide that you want to give composing music a try in addition to playing it. At Sage Music, we want to help your musical journey unfold in a fun and natural way. This first lesson is just the beginning!

Preparing for your first guitar lesson should not be a stressful experience. At Sage Music, we believe that music lessons should be inviting and inclusive. As you can see by reading the above, while there are various ways in which you can mentally and physically prepare, the most important thing that you can bring is yourself and a willingness to learn. Let the musical journey begin!

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