I have been practicing the guitar for nearly a year on my own. I know you will say that I should hire a guitar teacher but I can't do this at the moment. I know some basic chords and I can play them well individually but I am not very good at changing between chords. I am using the Yousician app and I have reached level 5. But I am struggling with slow improvement. I can play tabs for a song I listen to on my own. On a scale of 10 I would rate myself a 2 in my guitar skills. My friend suggested that I should learn music theory along with learning guitar as it will help me in the long run. I have heard of music theory but I haven't used it anywhere. When I researched music theory I saw many people teach through piano. I then get confused that some people teach it through the guitar. So what Is the difference between these two and which should I learn and practice? A reference or link to video lessons would be much appreciated. Thanks in advance.

  • 1
    Look up Ben Levin on youtube. There is a playlist with theory videos suited for guitar.
    – user43681
    Nov 13, 2017 at 5:03

2 Answers 2


It is true that having a teacher on the guitar is a great resource but I understand that it isn't possible for many people. I once had a guitar teacher but I had to eventually stop lessons due to lack of time and learnt to teach myself. I then got occasional lessons where someone would show me my mistakes and give me advice on how to improve. One thing that I would suggest before you learn music theory is to that you improve playing you chords until you are confident, then you will be in the right position to learn music theory. When self teaching, as you are, yousician is a great resource and I commend you for reaching level 5, at this level in learning the guitar, improvement slows down a lot and from my experience of yousician I would only be a level six or seven. To aid improvement on the guitar I would suggest that you add in video lessons on YouTube. Search things like, 'guitar exercises' or 'Common mistakes made when learning the guitar.' Try to ensure that your playing is clear, that there isn't any stresses in your body (e.g. tensed muscles), and that you feel coordinated. In the context of music theory, I personally learnt it through a combination of guitar and the piano. As others may have said, music theory is extremely similar between instruments and the same concepts can be seen in many different instruments. If you have ever looked inside a piano that isn't electronic, you will see that there are many strings and it may even look like there is a harp. The strings in a piano produce music in a very similar way that the guitar does, They are just laid out differently and make a different sound. This different sound is due to things like string tension, string length, and the chemical makeup of the strings and body. In your context, if you don't plan to ever learn multiple instruments, especially the piano, learn music theory through the guitar. Music theory will certainly help you understand the guitar and will help in long term improvement as your friend has said. Here is a link to some good music theory videos: music theory

Good Luck in learning the guitar and any other musical instruments you may choose to play.


Guitar theory is normally just normal music theory, but taught through the guitar, not the piano or on paper.

It will help you in the long run, that's for sure. I would recommend focusing on your technical abilities first, because if you can't play multiple chords in a simple progression, music theory won't help you playing, really.

First focus on basic guitar skills. There's many great resources on YouTube, just make sure to be critical of everything and everyone: there is also a lot of bad advice on YouTube.

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