1. Stress buster
One of the main reasons to start learning a musical instrument is that playing can actually reduce your stress levels. Researchers at Stanford University found that while listening to music can help to change an individual’s mood, playing an instrument actually lowers the heart rate and blood pressure, reducing the levels of the stress hormone cortisol in the body. The main reason for this is that playing an instrument requires so much of our concentration that stressful thoughts tend to get pushed out of our minds entirely.
2. Confidence builder
Playing an instrument can also help to improve your confidence levels. As your music playing goes from strength to strength and you’re able to play more pieces and even perform in front of others, you’ll get a huge boost of confidence, which you can then replicate in other areas of your life. Once you become confident in one skill, such as playing the piano, your achievements can make you feel more confident about other, unrelated skills, such as speaking in public or participating in more activities.
3. Improves memory
Not only does playing an instrument require you to retain a lot of information, such as where your fingers should go or which notes you should be playing, but, according to Dartmouth College, music actually helps you to remember other pieces of information. For example, if you’re struggling to remember certain dates, adding them to a melody that you’re playing will help you remember them significantly faster.
4. Better discipline
If you’re committed to learning a musical instrument, the process will require you to put in the hours to practice and dedication to improve. By arranging your day to fit in with music practice, not only will you become more organised, but your self-discipline will also improve, as will your perseverance – two skills which you can apply to any areas of your personal or professional life.
5. Creativity boost
Once you’ve mastered the basics of music, it‘s a natural step to start taking the chords and melodies that you learnt and morphing them into your own pieces of music. As music engages more than one sense, from the physical, to the cognitive and emotional, it can help us to think outside the box and you might even find that while you practice, a solution to a completely unrelated issue might come to you almost out of nowhere.
6. Sense of achievement
As you learn each piece of music, you’ll go from playing it for the first time and making mistakes, to eventually playing it flawlessly, no matter how difficult it seemed at first. The first time you play the piece without any mistakes will give you a huge sense of achievement and pride, inspiring you to keep pushing yourself in other areas that you previously struggled.
Last but by no means least, learning to play a musical instrument is incredibly fun! Music can change the way we feel, from angry to calm or from sad to happy and hearing yourself perform a piece of music flawlessly is a great feeling. Once you’re comfortable with an instrument, you can start playing with others, whether to form a band or just for fun, which can provide you with new, long-lasting friends.
- Skoove is an entertaining and individualised way to learn the piano from your computer. Traditionally, learning the piano can seem daunting for novices: learning sheet music, as well as buying and housing a piano. Skoove works across leading web browsers and offers a set of intuitive and responsive courses in contemporary and classical music. Simply sign up, connect your keyboard to your laptop and get playing, while Skoove guides you through from beginner to Bach and the Beatles.