Is It Too Late to Learn Guitar? [10 Good Reasons to Get Started Today]

older learner

If you are interested in learning guitar or any other instrument for that matter, it’s never too late. In fact, if you want to learn to play guitar at an older age will actually give you some advantages that younger students don’t get.

Whether you’re 25 or 75, it is never too late to learn guitar and discover the joys of music. In this article, we are exploring ten of the top reasons you should start learning guitar today. There’s no time like now to pick up skills on the guitar, even if you are doing so later in life.

Computers Make Learning Easier

If you think it’s too late to learn guitar for you then the internet probably wasn’t around or as accessible when you were younger as it is today. The internet and computer networks are so powerful today, more so than they ever have been before. Online you can access untold resources, a lot of which are free, to assist you with your learning journey. Guitar lessons online can be helpful and there are video tutorials on YouTube where you can learn to play.

Access to online resources can be particularly helpful to you later in life if you are feeling a bit nervous about learning guitar. You may not feel particularly comfortable learning from a teacher who is younger than you. There are things such as DVD’s, websites dedicated to guitar and also tutorial videos that can pretty much teach you anything you want to learn. You can have a guitar instructor on the other end of the computer and learn guitar without ever having to leave your home.

Thanks to all of the powerful technology we have access to today, learning guitar has never been easier. It’s certainly a lot more accessible now than it would have been when you were a child.

You Know Your Style

As an older learner, you know exactly what types of music you like and those that you don’t like as much. As a youngster learning guitar, part of that journey is to explore the full spectrum of music genres and to try and figure out which one you like. This is a confusing part of learning the guitar when you’re younger because there’s so much to choose from.

Playing guitar later in life means that you’ve already got your own style of music pretty much pinned down. The more years you’ve been on the planet, the more time you’ve had to explore the genres you enjoy. You will have been exposed to many types of music and your knowledge of it will be much broader than when you were younger.

The awareness of what you like and dislike is incredibly helpful when starting on your learning journey. It can help you pick out the right guitar and will inspire you to practice more because you actually enjoy the music.

Older Means More Discipline

While you may ignore the laundry for a day or two, or you just can’t say no to your favorite junk food, you still have a lot more discipline now than when you were younger. If you can do things like holding down a job, keeping a home or even raising children, you’ll have no trouble learning to play guitar. You just have to commit to the journey and make sure you put in the time to play well.

The thing about older learners is that they sometimes don’t have the confidence and belief that they can really play. Age shouldn’t be a factor in whether you can learn or not. It’s never too late to learn guitar and you’ll never be too old to learn a new skill.

You Have Better Financial Resources

While you may not be flush with cash all the time, you definitely have access to more financial freedom than a younger person would have. Many teenagers who pick up the guitar for the first time have to do so on a budget. This is partly due to parents not wanting to spend too much cash on an instrument that the child might not stick with in the long term. The problem with this is that cheap guitars and equipment can actually put you off playing. They may even have a negative impact on the learning process as a whole.

To learn to play guitar as an older student, you don’t have these kinds of problems. You have full command of you cash and you can decide how much or how little you want to spend on guitar lessons and equipment. If you have great finances then you may want to splash the cash a bit. Even on a tighter budget, there’s still some great gear suitable for beginners out there at affordable prices.

You Have More Realistic Expectations

If you have started playing guitar when you’re older then you’ll know that you’re not going to become the next Eric Clapton – well, it’s unlikely anyway! There is always the potential to go on and become a professional musician if that’s what you want to do, but you won’t have a big shot at making it to the big time. Unfortunately, that’s the culture we have to live in these days.

We’re not trying to get you down here. Taking on the task of when you learn to play guitar, when taken on at the right perspective, can actually be incredibly liberating. As a child you start out playing guitar in the hopes you will become a rockstar or a famous musician. As an adult you know this won’t be realistic for you.

When you learn to play guitar at an older age you can skip all of these pipedreams and focus on what’s real. From the very start you will be learning guitar just for the pure love of the music, the instrument and the happiness it can bring to you.

You Can Manage Your Time Better

Younger students may say they want to play but then once they started learning, won’t commit the time actually learning properly. Of course, as an adult you still have a busy schedule, trying to balance work and home life properly.

The key to guitar playing and becoming successful on the electric or acoustic guitar is time management. If you really want to play the guitar, you will carve out that time in your schedule to do so. It may mean you get up a little earlier in the mornings or that you skip some tv time in the evening, but you can still make the time.

At a young age, you probably had a hard time prioritizing tasks and sticking to a schedule. You now have the ability to do this more so than you did years ago. If you really want to start playing and this is going to become a passion for you, you’ll find a way to fit the practice in around your everyday life.

There’s Less Pressure

Children of a certain age can be incredibly hard on one another. Adults can also be tough on their kids if they think they are wasting their time doing something. As a younger person, it can be difficult to get other people to understand why you want to spend so much time learning and practicing your guitar. Other kids who don’t share the same passion may find it strange and adults think it’ll lead to bad behavior like rockstars such as Jimi Hendrix.

Because you’ve started learning guitar as an adult, you’re already on the right track in your life. There’s no one that you need to justify yourself to about why you want to play guitar. You won’t get any judgment from others like you may have when you were younger. For this reason, there’s less pressure on you as an older person learning guitar than there would have been if you were younger.

You Can Reduce Stress

Everyone has some sort of stress, no matter how old they are. Learning guitar can be a great way to de-stress and get away from the rest of the world. A good guitar session can be just as good for some people as getting a twenty-minute massage.

Now there is actually some science behind this theory. Music is great for your body, your brain and your soul. To learn guitar you want to approach the journey as something that is going to be a great recreational activity for you. The less you think of it like it’s something you have to do, the more likely you will be to practice it. The more passion you have for the instrument will also improve the overall quality of your playing too.

Because you are an older learner you may immediately notice the benefits of learning guitar on both your mood and on your levels of stress. When life gets a bit too much you can always pick up your guitar and escape into the world of music for a while.

More Peer Support

Learning guitar as an adult may seem like an isolating experience because you don’t have as many peers around you with similar interests like you did when you were younger. Many of the friends you had when you were younger may not be around anymore and could have also changed their likes and hobbies.

An interesting thing happens though as you get into your 30s and beyond. People who truly enjoy music and decided not to pursue it when they were younger roll back round and want to start learning now. You’re not the only person in the boat of thinking you’re too old to learn. In some cases, these people will have started playing so they can perform with others. Except they too, much like yourself, will have realistic expectations of where this path is going to take them. You’re simply playing for the pure joy of it.

Older is Awesome

As you get older, you’re only getting more awesome as each year passes. You’re in a time of you life where you have more knowledge, more experience and a lot more wisdom than you did in your formative years. You have a better understanding of who you are and what you want out of life. You’ll have achieved a lot already and been through life experiences that have made you the person you are today.

The thing is with all of the life experiences you have already had you’ll have much more success learning the guitar. You can do it if you absolutely want to you and it’s a decision you won’t ever regret making.

You can put learning guitar on your bucket list but we suggest doing it now. You’re so prepared for the challenge that is the learning journey more so now than you ever have been before.

Tips for Playing as an Older Student

As someone who is learning guitar on the older side of the scale, here are a few tips for how you can make the whole process a bit easier.

  • Be patient with the journey and yourself. Learning guitar requires you to learn a lot of different techniques, hand shapes and skills. You will more than likely use muscles that you’ve never even needed before. Regardless of how late you start to learn guitar in life, you need to build up good techniques. These will only come with focused practice so make sure you are patient and know that it will come in time.
  • Buy a guitar that’s right for you. Buying something cheap will usually end up in you having a lemon for a guitar. Now, you don’t have to spend an absolute fortune to get something that sounds decent. As a beginner, try to aim in the $200 to $400 bracket. Don’t go overboard and buy a really pricey guitar right away because you won’t have built up a preference for how you like your instrument to feel and play. This only comes with time.
  • Choose the right songs for your ability level. There will always be songs that you want to play when you first start learning guitar. However, a lot of these songs will probably be at a higher ability level than what you can handle right now. Trying to learn a song that is too advanced can actually put you off playing altogether and can be really discouraging. There are a lot of popular songs out there to choose from that are available at a beginner level so make sure you start out with these while you get to grips with the basics.
  • Practice every day and make it a habit. You don’t need to practice for hours at a time every day but even five minutes can improve your skills. Having this as part of your regular routine takes some of the pressure out of the learning journey. If time isn’t on your side then start out by playing for five minutes a day and then slowly increase the amount of time you play for. Eventually, you may be enjoying yourself so much that hours of practice go by without you realizing it.
  • Focus and be efficient. As an older learner, you have less time to practice than a younger student would get. Because you’ve started learning guitar at a later stage in life, you need to make sure you are focused on your goals and that every practice session is time-efficient. You may want to focus on certain parts of your playing that you find tricky in your practice sessions to help you become better at songs and chords.
  • Structure your learning. At the beginning of your learning journey, the amount of stuff you need to take on can feel a little overwhelming. It may also be putting you off jumping into learning the guitar. Structuring your learning process is really important. Stick to songs that are at your playing level or just slightly above if you are ready to progress. Don’t flit from one thing to another because this is where your learning can become compromised.
  • Find a course and stick to it. Moving courses constantly or changing up what you are playing means you have no structure. No structure goes on to completely kill any motivation. This will then lead to a feeling of disappointment as you won’t be accomplishing anything. In turn, this goes on to end your learning journey. Pick a course and stick to that so you can be inspired to continue playing.
  • Toughen up your fingertips. When you first begin the guitar your fingers are going to take a beating. An electric guitar will do more damage to your fingers than an acoustic. There are a few ways you can toughen up your fingertips for better playing. Things like finger exercises and hand span stretches are particularly good for someone who has older hands so you can reach those tricky barre chords.
  • Use a capo for easier movements. A capo is a really helpful tool that can change the fretboard and pitch of the guitar without you having to do any of the work. Because it changes the pitch your frets will be closer together. As a beginner, it can be hard work to stretch your fingers so a capo will be an absolute live saver in this situation. As you continue to progress in your learning you can move the capo further away and may even end up not using it at all.

Conclusion

Learning guitar could be one of the best decisions you ever make in your life and it will definitely be something that you won’t regret. As you encounter more people in their adult lives, many of them will say they wished they’d learned an instrument. What’s stopping them? Once you do begin learning guitar you’ll find that you forget life before you started playing.

Some people will listen to the advice that if they want to learn guitar, they should just do it. Others won’t. If you are still feeling reluctant to learn guitar because of your age, trust us that it will be a really inspiring experience. It’s a great life choice that will allow you to grow as a person and it gives you so many benefits both in mind and body.

You will never be too old to learn guitar, so don’t wait any longer. Good luck!

FAQs

Is 22 too old to learn guitar?

You don’t have to start early to be able to play the guitar properly. 22 is a great age to start learning and as long as you put in the practice, you’ll be able to master the instrument.

Can you be too old to learn guitar?

It’s never too late to learn any instrument including the guitar. You can pick up a guitar and start learning to play at any age. While a younger person will be able to learn a bit faster, you can still become a beginner at the guitar whether you are 30 or 70. There’s no limit on age for learning music.

Is 27 too old to learn guitar?

No, it’s never too late to learn a new skill. If you’re thinking about learning guitar now is the time to start – the quicker the better. What you need to do is really manage your expectations because the learning process and becoming a master at anything, including the guitar, will take some time. If you put in the right amount of time and practice you will get there.

Is it too late to learn guitar at 28?

You don’t have to be a youngster to pick up an instrument. It’s also not too late to become great at that instrument. If you really want to learn the guitar properly we would suggest investing in some lessons and get yourself a proper practice routine in place.

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