Adult Learners

Think you are too old to learn to play a musical instrument? Think again! If you have always dreamed of learning the guitar, now can be the ideal time to learn, or maybe you learnt years ago and want to regain some of that musical groove.

At Glenelg Guitar Studio a large proportion of my students are adults and senior ones at that. I have an easy to follow, structured plan to teach you guitar in the style that you like, be it classical or modern, and at your pace. I have years of experience in teaching Guitar to all ages and have a series of special learning techniques to help new adult students achieve their goals in a stress free environment.

Adults often have less time available but have a great appreciation of musical studies, with  research showing that learning and playing an instrument in your adult years can yield bountiful rewards. The therapeutic value of musical training includes a lowering of stress levels, a boost in brain functionality, a strengthening of the immune system, and an increase in positive thinking–not to mention that learning to play an instrument can be a lot of fun.

Why not take advantage of our Introductory Lesson? Follow this link to see more.

Leigh Fopp

Here’s an interesting take on music in schools.


What others say;
Memory Enhancement: Musical study can play an important role in helping adults keep a sharp mind. Especially if you are a senior, where research links playing an instrument to the stimulation of areas of the brain involved with memory, which may have implications in preventing Alzheimer’s disease and other forms of dementia.

For example, a 21-year study by the Albert Einstein College of Medicine in the Bronx followed 469 seniors between the ages of 75 and 85 who did not have dementia at beginning of the study. The results, which were published in the New England Journal of Medicine in 2003, demonstrated a strong association between cognitively challenging leisure activities, including playing a musical instrument, and a decreased risk of developing dementia.

Physical Benefits: Physical health and playing an instrument also seem to go hand in hand. Research by Dr. Frank Wilson of the University Of California School Of Medicine in San Francisco found that learning to play a musical instrument, besides bettering concentration and memory, also enhanced physical abilities such as coordination and even the improvement of eyesight and hearing. Another study, the Music Making and Wellness Project, documented that seniors given keyboard lessons had a 90 percent increase in their levels of human growth hormone (hGH), a chemical important in slowing such aging factors as osteoporosis, wrinkling and aches and pains.

Mental Health Benefits:  Seniors who play the Blues will help to beat the blues.  In 2005, a research study led by Dr. Barry Bittman found that playing a musical instrument reduced stress more than other relaxing activities.

…and here’s what another adult learner had to say.

About two years ago I decided to try guitar as a new hobby as a late 50’s guy; bought myself a cheapie and enrolled in a WEA course, where I met Leigh, who was the tutor. I had had a previous dabble in guitar many years before but it didn’t grab me and I gave up, so I’m not sure what I expected this time, but from day one of that course, Leigh had us playing “Wild Thing”, “Sunshine of your Love” and “Smoke on the Water”…wow. I guess I had expected to learn a few chords, some drills and theory and maybe a couple of basic nursery rhymes (no disrespect to those)…a bit boring perhaps.

Since then, Leigh has been my teacher and I have learnt so much and enjoy my guitar a lot. When my friends asked what I had learnt, I was amazed reflecting back on how many songs I could play. Some are a bit rough, mind you, but they include some by Pink Floyd, Green Day, the Beatles, Pete Murray …..some of my very favourite artists. Thanks a lot Leigh for always making learning actual songs your top priority in teaching me..this approach has captured my imagination and kept me fully engaged in learning and i can notice the improvement over time. This song focus plus your patience and relaxed, friendly manner has kept me engaged and looking forward to every lesson and thoroughly enjoying our musical journey.

Regards, Mel.


  1. Thanks Leigh,

    Yes I’ll certainly come to the first session as a spectator so I can see what the night consists of. Sounds good as I currently do all my playing on my own so to talk to and possible play with other guitarist would be something different.

    Look forward to seeing you there.



    • Confirmed.
      Looking forward to catching up with you then Geoff.

  2. Hi Leigh,

    Unfortunately due to a reaction that I have experienced as a result of what I think was getting my COVID vax on Thursday I was unable to attend the final class today. Muscle soreness and joint aches.
    I was disappointed that I could get as there but that’s the way it goes sometimes.
    You mention that you meet regularly with a group of fellow guitarist and this is something that I would like to investigate if they are open to new guitarist attending a session.

    Thanks for your tuition and I look forward to catching up at some stage in the future.



    • Hi Geoff,

      I hope you are feeling better.

      I will give your name to the Guitar-workshop secretary and you will receive an email from my friend (his name is Denny) at the end of February.
      The night is for either guitarists wanting to perform, and/or anybody wanting to watch guitarists of any age and standard etc perform.

      I love going to watch and perform and some of my students (privately or from the WEA) attend regularly to watch and from time to time perform as well.
      The cost is $2.00 to attend and $5.00 to participate!

      I would suggest you come along in February to watch and see what happens on the night and take it from there.

      Does this answer all your questions Geoff?

      Please let me know if I can be of further assistance.

      Thanks Geoff.



  3. Hi Leigh,
    Sorry to advise I won’t be able to make the last WEA class. A sinus infection has got the better of me.
    If I came in everyone would think it’s Covid19. Can’t have that!
    I wanted to thank you for all you have done. It’s been great.
    Look forward to catching up next year at sometime.


    • Hi John,
      Thankyou for your email and I’m sorry to hear you are unwell.
      Congratulations on your achievements John and I look forward to catching up with you next year.
      Thanks again for your friendship and for taking lessons from me.

  4. Hi Leigh,

    Hope this finds you well.

    Thanks for obtaining a Grade 1 book of pieces for me. I’m looking forward to moving on from the preliminary level book.

    I will bring the money to Wednesdays lesson.

    Thanks Justin.


    • My pleasure Justin.
      Congratulations on moving to the next level.

  5. Hi Leigh,
    With restrictions lifting, we are off to Sydney and will be back on Oct 6.
    I’m pretty flexible with times to catch up this lesson thereafter.
    PS Also I have come across some sheet music I would like to learn. I’ll send it to you in email in a day or two

    • Hi Stephen,

      Hope this finds you well and thanks for your sms.

      Confirming the following:

      No lesson on Wed 30/9
      Lesson from 30/9 rescheduled to 4pm Wed 7/10

      See you then Stephen.

      Have a great trip.



  6. Good afternoon Leigh,

    I hope you’ve been good.

    As discussed last Saturday @ the WEA Guitar course, I would be interested in continuing learning guitar.

    Perfect for my work and life schedule Wednesday afternoon, let’s say 6.30 pm would be perfect.

    Please let me know if you need any information or you want to have a chat on the phone.

    Thanks and looking forward your feedback.



    • Dear Alex,

      Thank you for your email and congratulations on your positive approach and achievements.

      Unfortunately I dont have any Wednesday evening vacancies.

      I have had an influx of people requiring lessons and the only vacancies I have at the moment are 6pm or 7pm on Monday evenings.

      Would this work until a vacancy became available on Wednesday?

      Lessons are fortnightly for 60 minutes.

      Thanks again for making contact Alex.


  7. Hi Leigh.
    I’ve recently bought an acoustic guitar and have been messing around by myself watching YouTube videos and think/know I need a one on one learning environment. I’m 54 years old and a beginner. I’m really keen to learn and am prepared to work and practice hard. Would you be interested in teaching me?
    Regards Darren

    • Hi Darren,
      Thank you for your email.
      I teach Mon-Thurs afternoons and evenings.
      What are the best days and times for you to have a lesson?

  8. Hi Leigh,
    Appreciate your flexibility in allowing me to have weekly lessons. I guess I am just thinking I would like to do a more “intensive” block for a couple of months to see if I can improve.

  9. Leigh

    Thanks for the email regarding my progress.
    I am very excited to be moving my guitar skills forward into blues and the styles I want play. I really appreciate your support and expert tutelage to guide me in moving forward.
    I hope you are having a good break.
    I look forward to my next lesson with you on the 29th July.



    • Hi Peter,
      I was very impressed with the “Slide Guitar” skills you demonstrated at your last lesson, hence my email. I think you have done a very good job teaching yourself the basics of fingerpicking Slide-Guitar!
      Keep up the good work Peter.

  10. Hi Leigh

    Thanks for the call last week. I am sorry that this has been such a tough time for your family.

    James would love to have some catch-up lessons in the holidays if that works for you.

    This week he can be available :
    Tues 9-10am or after 2pm
    Wed 3-5pm
    Fri anytime

    Let me know if any of those times suit.



    • Thank you Karyn for your kind thoughts and lesson times for James.
      I will email you by Monday lunchtime which is when I will have my timetable for the week finalised.

  11. Hi Leigh

    Re: On-line Exams
    There is a new page on the website. There appears to be a lot of flexibility.
    I’ll discuss at next lesson but just wanted to put it in writing to come back and review

    Recording – possibly in a lesson mid year ( June / July)
    List A allegretto
    List B nesta rua
    List C vals
    Additional : cold finger blues (for recording , only 1 additional piece required)
    Technical work (to be be recorded)

    See you in two weeks

    • Hi John,
      Thanks for this information.
      I will check it out as I have a few students enquiring about doing exams in the current Covid-19 environment.

  12. Hi Leigh we spoke this morning and you gave me a rundown. I would like to begin lessons. Once a fortnight would be best for me. We talked about starting nowish…I have ongoing commitments on Tuesdays and Fridays (with a bit of wriggle room). I appreciate next week has its limits but is next Wednesday or Thursday an option for lesson one?
    Say hello to Jason for me. He might also remember my wife Jo. Kind regards Stephen

    • Hi Stephen,

      Thank you for your email.

      I will be in touch later today or tomorrow to arrange a 60 minute introductory lesson?



  13. I would like to book in for a series of 3 lessons/6 weeks – if possible on Tuesdays on May 10, 24, June 7 anytime that suits you (or could do Mondays)
    I have done WEA intro course last year, interested in folk/country chords, learning about rhythms/strumming patterns
    Cheers Chris

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