Every day people look for ways to improve their lives. Nutrition and exercise are certainly the main components to a healthy lifestyle but the addition of playing a musical instrument, such as the piano, provides numerous benefits for individuals both physically and mentally.
A pianist can reap several benefits while in the early stages of learning. These benefits may continue to be realized throughout a person’s lifetime. Several scientific research studies have proven that playing the piano is good for a person’s health and overall well being whether he or she begins piano as a child or as an adult.
1. Playing the piano can increase cognitive development. Numerous scientific studies have shown that producing music stimulates the brain in ways that almost every other activity cannot. Neurological pathways are connected while playing the piano that can then be utilized in other disciplines, such as mathematics, science and engineering.
2. Eye-hand coordination is developed while playing. Reading piano sheet music trains the eyes and hands to work closely together. Sight reading drills will further enhance this coordination.
3. Fine motor skills are also developed. Nimble hands move efficiently only because of consistent practice. Any size hands can learn to play the piano. It is the training of the hands that produces the agility necessary for playing the most demanding piano compositions.
4. Playing the piano requires a certain amount of dedication. For most people it will take a significant amount of work to become an accomplished pianist. Regular practice sessions each day will instill discipline in an individual that can then be applied to many other areas of life.
5. Music itself can reduce anxiety and stress. Sitting down to play a piano for even a few moments on a busy day can help the mind refocus: relieving stress and even lowering a person’s blood pressure.
6. Playing the piano can also affect the mental health of an individual. Pianists may see a reduction in depression, its’ symptoms and other mental health issues. Social pain, such as loneliness, can also be battled when playing a piano.
There are virtually no ill side effects from playing the piano, but the benefits are good for the body and mind of any individual. Piano playing allows for both strict discipline and unlimited creativity. All this is found in an activity that can be done by any individual with a desire to learn, regardless of age or intellect.
Reference: New Acoustic Society 2013