Easy Piano Tips to Make You a Virtuoso

When a person wants to learn how to play the piano, they may not know how to get started. This article will share some simple piano tips to help you gain new skills and start your adventure with music.

Find an affordable piano

Before you read our piano tips and best practices, let’s make sure you’re set up with a piano. If you already have a piano to play and practice, props to you. But if you don’t already have one, you’ll need to find a good one.

A piano is an investment, so you’ll spend anywhere from a thousand dollars to a hundred thousand, depending on the size, age, and features.

You can find a nice one for around 10,000 dollars. Or if that is too much for you as a beginner student, you could purchase a less-expensive version for a thousand dollars or less.

Another option would be a keyboard. You can purchase a model with light up keys for easy playing for less than 1,000 dollars.

Break up your practice sessions

Many beginner students try to cram a lot of practice into one day of practice. They may try to learn a whole song in one session.

The first of our piano tips is to not do too much all at once. It’s better to break up your practice sessions into bite-sized pieces. There are a few reasons for this.

Concentration

The first reason is that learning to play the piano requires intense concentration. You must be highly focused on the task at hand to learn music.

If you start daydreaming in the middle of a session, it will take much longer to master. Short sessions help you concentrate and stay motivated. So breaking up your sessions is more efficient.

Your practice session length will vary from person to person, depending on your attention span and schedule. Many people find that they can only spend an hour tops on learning a song.

Memory

Another reason is that cramming a lot of work into one session doesn’t work as well as learning over a series of short sessions.

A study by the University of California, Los Angeles revealed that 90 percent of participants learned more effectively by spacing out learning than by cramming.

So to make the most of the time you spend playing, break up your practice sessions into daily bites rather than weekly feasts. You’ll remember it better that way. Daily repetition helps cement the tune in your mind for better recall.

Scheduling

The last reason is that it’s a lot easier to find 20 minutes in your schedule each day than to find a two-hour chunk each week. You can adjust the length of your session based on your individual needs and preferences.

Stop in the name of love!

One of the best piano tips I can give you for becoming an accomplished pianist is to stop playing before you make a mistake.

I’m not saying you should quit playing so that you never make a mistake again.

I’m saying that while you’re practicing, in the middle of a song, if you make a mistake in the next note or phrase, stop playing immediately.

Do not play the notes wrong. Just pause your fingers and wait. Look at the music and identify where your finger should press next.

Don’t keep going if you are prone to make a mistake in that section of music.

If you keep going, your brain and fingers will learn it wrong. Your ear will tell you it’s a mistake, but your fingers and brain will remember that mistake.

If you keep going, you will be memorizing the mistake, not the correct way to play.

So instead of doing it wrong the first time, take a breath. Stop what you are doing until you learn it right.

Then once you’ve mastered that section, play it over and over until you memorize the correct way to play it.

This is probably the most important of the piano tips we mention in this post. Stop playing when you make a mistake.

This will teach you to play it right so you will never stumble over it again.

Do exercises away from the piano

Practicing while you’re away from the piano can help you memorize songs. Use your fingers to practice hitting the keys while you’re sitting. You can tap on your knees or a table.

Practicing this way engages your brain and hands together. It helps program the song into your mind.

Here’s is a sample practice technique that you can do while you’re not at the piano.

Hold your thumb down while tapping your other fingers in a pattern.

First tap D with your index finger. Then lift that finger and tap F with your ring finger.

Next, tap E with your middle finger and lift your finger. Then tap G with your pinky and lift.

Then repeat the pattern, only this time hold your index finger down while you tap all the other notes. So tap C, then F, then E and finally G.

Do this with all of your fingers so you practice holding down each finger while tapping the rest.

You should also do this pattern with your left hand, as well, tapping each finger in order like you did with your right hand.

Doing this practice with both hands at once is a challenge, but it will help you develop the ability to play with both hands at once.

If you get really good, hold down one finger with your right hand and tap. At the same time, hold down a different finger with your left hand and tap. You’ll get it.

Another great tip is to practice playing songs you’ve memorized away from the piano.

Practicing away from the instrument is one of the best piano tips we can give to help you develop finger dexterity and independence. This will make it easier for different fingers to do different things at the same time.

Develop an ear for music

Looking for piano tips that will take you to the next level as a musician? Developing your ear for music takes time and practice. But the more you do it, the better musician you become.

What is an ear for music?

Having an ear for music means that you can identify the notes, the chords, and the rhythms when you listen to a piece of music.

It also enables you to identify mistakes while you listen to yourself play. And if you don’t read music, it can help you learn to read it faster.

To start developing your ear, play a simple song on the piano, like Bah Bah Black Sheep, and listen carefully to the notes as you play.

As you play the note C, listen to how it sounds. When you play a note above the first, notice how it sounds. Once you remember the difference between one note and the next, start listening to chord progressions.

Then focus on the rhythm and time signature of the music. After a short time, you’ll begin to hear the difference between a 4/4 and a 6/8 time signature.

When you start to hear the notes and make connections between what a song looks like on paper and what it sounds like when played, you’ll pick up how to read music more quickly.

Improvise

Becoming a better player takes practice, but you should also have fun with it. One of the better piano tips for getting more comfortable playing is to improvise.

Improvising is playing a song you make up on the spot. This is an easy way to getting used to playing the piano.

Start by playing notes that sound good together and then form a progression to make a song. Then add in chords and harmonies.

Don’t be hard on yourself if it doesn’t sound like Mozart. You don’t have to write an impressive song. Just get used to the way different notes sound.

You’ll start to notice what notes sound good together, and that will help you learn to write music.

Improvisation can be challenging, but the rewards it brings — turning you into a better musician — are well worth the effort.

Even if it doesn’t sound great the first few times, don’t give up. One of the most important piano tips we can give you is to just have fun with it.

You can learn at any age

Children learn at an amazing rate. This is because there is so much to learn when you’re a child. A child’s mind is built to absorb information and ideas incredibly fast.

You’ll see this clearly when a young child is learning a language. If you compared the average adult learning a second language to a child learning language, the child would surpass the adult.

You may be thinking, why bother as an adult when I won’t pick it up as fast as a child would?

One of the best piano tips my grandmother gave me is that you’re never too old to learn how to play. My grandmother is 78, and she still plays the piano at church.

But the truth is, an adult can learn to play the piano just as fast as a child. Why?

Babies Can’t Juggle

When a baby is learning language, he is immersed in it for 12 hours a day, every day. And he has nothing else to occupy his time with.

All he does all day is eat, sleep and poo.

One of the reasons they learn so fast is because all they do is learn. They don’t have other priorities and commitments to juggle.

Adults, on the other hand, have lots of other priorities to juggle. We have laundry and dishes and errands on top of eating and sleeping.

If an adult put 12 hours of focused practice time into playing each day, they’d be Mozart pretty soon, too.

The Adult Intellect

One of the benefits of learning as an adult is that adults have a lot of skills and experience that kids do not. Adults know how to break complex processes down into manageable steps.

Adults have time management skills and a greater attention span than most kids.

Sustained Motivation

Plus, adults often have more motivation to learn than kids do.

Adults usually are more self-directed and have more discipline with learning new skills. They won’t give up as easily or get bored as fast.

So when it comes to learning piano, adults can learn it just as well as kids. And they may be more efficient learners, as well.

So if you’re worried you won’t learn as a quickly as your son might remember that you have lots of advantages that will help you learn it fast. You’re more disciplined, more patient and more equipped to learn it.

Does Age Really Hold You Back?

Remember that some of the greatest works of art were created by aging artists. Many famous artists painted long into their old age.

Mark Hudson writes in the Telegraph, “there is a small and select band of artists …whose last works become a distillation of everything they’ve done before. …Titian was one of them, so were Michelangelo, Goya, Hokusai, [and] Matisse.”

Remember, age cannot bar greatness. So don’t let your age stop you from learning how to play!

Looking for More Piano Tips?

We hope that this article has given you more insight into how to advance from a beginning piano student to a pro. Watch our blog for more piano tips and tricks.

If you have questions about buying a piano, you can contact us so we can help you find the right piano to meet your needs.