How do I choose a beginner's guitar for my child?
A guitar is a great starting instrument for curious learners. If your child has started to develop an appreciation for music and how it's made, it may be time to suggest learning to play the guitar.
However, there are a few things to get right in the process of choosing your child's first guitar.
Consider this your guide to choosing your child's first guitar.
Types of Guitar
When we say the type of guitar, we're talking about acoustic vs electric. There are benefits and drawbacks to both.
Acoustics (including Classical guitars) are versatile and can be played anywhere. It comes without the added expense of buying an amp, leads, and expensive pedals.
One drawback to starting with an acoustic is that can feel a little harder to play as a beginner. This is because the action is higher on acoustic guitars than on electrics. Action refers to the space between the string and the guitar's fretboard. The low action of electric guitars makes it easier to press down the strings to play a single note or chord.
What do they want to learn?
It also depends on the style of music your child wants to learn. Here at Tremolo Guitar School, we teach Electric, Acoustic and classical. These styles not only use different types of guitars but also focus on different learning methods. This could include learning to read music for classical, learning scales and improvisation for electric and learning strumming and fingerstyle for acoustic. We can discuss this during your trial lesson but at least have a think about the type of music your child shows an interest in.
What about size?
Depending on your child's age, you'll want to choose a guitar that is the right size. Here is a rough guide you can use when choosing the size of the guitar:
Ages 6 to 9 should start with a 3/4 size guitar
Ages 9 to 12 should start with either a 3/4 or 4/4 size guitar
Ages 12 and up can start with a standard 4/4 size guitar
You'll notice that some of these overlap. That's because not all children are the same. Use your discretion, but this is a good guide to use when choosing a guitar for your child.
So what to choose?
For complete beginners, I always recommend you buy a cheap Classical guitar as listed here. They are playable, easy to set up and affordable. This way you are not making a huge financial commitment before your child has even started lessons. This can be used for all styles of guitar up until grade 3. By this time you will have a good idea of where your child wants to go with their guitar lessons and whether it's worth the investment for a more expensive guitar.
With this short guide, you should be all set to choose your child's first guitar. The only thing you have to consider now is where to go for lessons. Here at Tremolo Guitar School, we've got you covered with a wide range of lessons and tutors.
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