I am not a professional musician. Three years ago I began to play electric guitar. I have tried to practice systematically and seriously for approximately 1 hour to 1.5 hours a day which is divided up into three areas of focus:
1) Sightreading 2) Technical excercises 3) Improvisation and playing for fun
I mention this as an example situation. I am happy with the progress made given the time and effort I was able to invest.
It is very hard to muster the energy at the end of a busy day and practice seriously, but at the end of each session there is a sense of achievement and satisfaction.
Given this, I was recently presented with an opinion that a 'measly' 1 - 1.5 hours a day would be nowhere near enough to achieve serious results.
I know this topic might be very broad and undefined but I am hoping to sample the range of opinions on this topic from anyone willing to share their view and experience.
So to be clear, this is not about the kind of practice time a motivated youngster or aspiring professional musician ( without other conflicting commitments ) could or should afford to dedicate.
Rather I am after the experiences of non-professional BUT serious musicians who aspire nevertheless to improve their performance and musicianship on their chosen instrument and in their chosen genre.
My own view is that when faced with time constraints one should hunker down, take a longer term view BUT make sure that
i) practice happens regularly for whatever length of time one is able to afford..(...given one's priorities..children, family, careers...e.t.c. )
ii) practice time is structured in a way to make the best use of the time available
In summary when time is scarce, one might be able to make up for it by dedicated, focused and efficient practice habits