How to Relearn Guitar After Taking a Long Break

How to Relearn Guitar After Taking a Long Break

You could have plenty of reasons to have given up playing your guitar altogether. Perhaps your job kept you fully occupied or you were investing more time in your family. But now that you’re here, let’s get you back to where you were before. 

It won’t be a day’s work but might take just as much time as it did before if you go mindlessly. Here are some ways you can relearn your guitar much faster.

Get both you and your guitar ready 

Coming back after being out of touch with your guitar for so long must have a reason. Whether it’s an attempt to get back to old hobbies or to start playing in your local pub again, your purpose will motivate you to be more consistent and committed this time. Introspect and let this purpose sink in. If you’re ready to make an investment to motivate you to stay committed, you could check out online guitar lessons, which you can start the moment you find your motivation.

Once you’re done finding your reason and purpose, get your guitar ready to be played again. Not tuning and cleaning your guitar for months or years will have damaged its quality of sound, so you will have to invest some time and money into it. If you know how to service your guitar, take apart parts that are to be cleaned and oiled. Wipe and polish the neck and the body.

Check the keys to see if they are rusted and also check if the neck is bent. If it’s bent, you could either fix it with an elbow tool or take it to a repair shop. Finally, buy some new strings and restring your guitar. 

If you’re afraid that you might damage your guitar in the process, you can just take it to a repair shop and get it fully serviced. 

Practice daily and be patient

Getting back in the groove is not a day’s work, so don’t push yourself too hard to make up for the lost time. Start practicing every day from now on, at least one hour a day. Don’t try to overcompensate for your lack of training by practicing a lot. It will only make relearning the guitar more cumbersome, making you lose motivation to continue. Rather, maintain a steady practice that only extends till when you find it enjoyable. 

Realizing that a lot of things that could do before aren’t so easy now may seem frustrating. But give yourself the time and space to relearn all that you forgot and get back into your best. Nothing feels better than returning to your best and pushing to get even better. 

Keep your guitar in a place that is visible from all corners of the room. This way, you are reminded of your practice, should you ever get caught up in work and forget. 

Revisit songs you learned before

Keeping yourself motivated to continue practicing could be boosted by revisiting songs that you learned in the past. Most of us have a few favorites that we love playing on our guitar. Playing those songs again could take you back in time and give you a motivation boost to play more. 

Even when you get into a regular habit of practicing, reserve some time at the start of every practice for these songs. Not only will you get you in a positive mood to play and learn more, but it will also warm your fingers and wrist to play a new riff. 

If there’s a song you can’t seem to recollect, you could easily find the chords and tabs for it online. Since you’d learned it before, relearning it would neither be challenging nor take much time. If you do end up taking time, give yourself some time to shake off the rust and give it another try. If it’s a song that’s close to your heart, keep practicing and you’ll surely benefit from it. 

How to Relearn Guitar After Taking a Long Break 2

Learn, practice, and revise

Instead of spending countless hours mindlessly trying to get back into a regular habit of playing the guitar, following a systematic method to practice would help you get more efficient at relearning the guitar. 

As mentioned, start off each practice session with a song you’ve already learned before, preferably a favorite. Once you’ve finished the song and your warm-up, move on to learn a new piece. This could either be just a riff or an entire song, depending on how much you wish to challenge yourself. Then you move on to practice and revise the piece you learned in the last session. 

This way, you’re learning something new while revising and practicing old songs. You can even change the sequence and revise the previous session’s piece first. Depending on your preference, you can set up a practice that will motivate you to come every day and help you create a habit. 

To sum it up

It’s admirable that you’ve taken the step to get back to your guitar and start playing again. Following these tips would help you stay consistent and reach your prime again.

Smridhi Malhotra (guest author)
Smridhi Malhotra is a professional blogger and a tech writer for some well-known startups and digital agencies. Her total work experience is 10 years and some of her favorite writing areas include SaaS, cryptocurrency, business and finance and every other thing that’s trending. Smridhi is a management graduate and visual graphics artist and is currently pursuing a master’s degree in behavioral psychology. In her free time, she meditates, plays tennis and reads non-fiction.


  • Very interesting post! It can be frustrating to get back at playing and not be able to achieve the same results as before right away.

Leave a Reply