18 Benefits of Playing a Musical Instrument

  • SumoMe

The Chinese philosopher Confucius said long ago that “Music produces a kind of pleasure which human nature cannot do without.” Playing a musical instrument has many benefits and can bring joy to you and to everyone around you.  This article will provide you with 18 benefits of playing an instrument (in no particular order) and will hopefully give you a better sense of appreciation and pride for music.

1.  Increases the capacity of your memory.
Research has shown that both listening to music and playing a musical instrument stimulate your brain and can increase your memory.  A study was done in which 22 children from age 3 to 4 and a half years old were given either singing lessons or keyboard lessons.  A control group of 15 children received no music lessons at all. Both groups participated in the same preschool activities.  The results showed that preschoolers who had weekly keyboard lessons improved their spatial-temporal skills 34 percent more than the other children.  Not only that, but researchers said that the effect lasted long-term.  (Source:  http://brainconnection.positscience.com/topics/?main=fa/music-education2#A1)

According to an article from The Telegraph online magazine, “New research suggests that regularly playing an instrument changes the shape and power of the brain and may be used in therapy to improve cognitive skills.”  There is continually more evidence that musicians have organizationally and functionally different brains compared to non-musicians, especially in the areas of the brain used in processing and playing music.  If you learn how to play an instrument, the parts of your brain that control motor skills (ex: using your hands, running, swimming, balancing, etc.), hearing, storing audio information, and memory actually grow and become more active.  Other results show that playing an instrument can help your IQ increase by seven points.   (Source:  http://www.telegraph.co.uk/science/science-news/6447588/Playing-a-musical-instrument-makes-you-brainier.html)

2.  Refines your time management and organizational skills.
Learning how to play an instrument requires you to really learn how to be organized and to manage your time wisely.  A good musician knows that the quality of practice time is more valuable than the quantity.  In order for a musician to progress quicker, he/she will learn how to organize his/her practice time and plan different challenges to work on, making efficient use of time.

3.  Boosts your team skills.
Team skills are a very important aspect of being successful in life.  Playing an instrument requires you to work with others to make music.  In band and orchestra settings you must learn how to cooperate with the people around you.  Also, in order for a group to make beautiful music, each player and section must learn how to listen to each other and play together.

4.  Teaches you perseverance.
Learning to play an instrument takes time and effort, which really teaches you patience and perseverance.  Most people can’t play every piece of music perfectly the first time.  In fact, the majority of musicians have to work difficult sections of music multiple times in a row before they can play it correctly.

5.  Enhances your coordination.
The art of playing an instrument requires a lot of hand-eye coordination.  By reading musical notes on a page, your brain subconsciously must convert that note into specific motor patterns while also adding breathing and rhythm to the mix.

6.  Betters your mathematical ability.
Reading music requires counting notes and rhythms and can help your math skills.  Also, learning music theory includes many mathematical aspects.  Studies have shown that students who play instruments or study the arts are often better in math and achieve higher grades in school than students who don’t.  (Source: Friedman, B. (1959) An evaluation of the achievement in reading and arithmetic of pupils in elementary schools instrumental classes. Dissertation Abstracts International, 20, pp.s 3662-3663.)

7.  Improves your reading and comprehension skills.
According to a study published in the journal Psychology of Music, “Children exposed to a multi-year program of music tuition involving training in increasingly complex rhythmic, tonal, and practical skills display superior cognitive performance in reading skills compared with their non-musically trained peers.”  (http://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2009/03/090316075843.htm)

It’s not surprising to hear results like that because music involves constant reading and comprehension.  When you see black and white notes on a page, you have to recognize what the note name is and translate it to a finger/slide position.  At the same time, you also have to read what rhythms the notes are arranged in and force your tongue to produce the correct pattern.

8.  Increases your responsibility.
Playing an instrument comes with its responsibilities.  Maintenance and care are very important in keeping an instrument in working condition.  Each instrument has different procedures to keep in functioning properly, but most instruments need cleaning and some form of oiling/greasing.  In addition to maintenance responsibilities, there are other aspects such as remembering music events (like rehearsals and performances) and making time to practice.

9.  Exposes you to cultural history.
Oftentimes music reflects the environment and times of its creation.  Therefore, you learn a variety of music types such as classical traditions, folk music, medieval, and other genres.  Music itself is history, and each piece usually has its own background and storyline that can further your appreciation of other cultures.

10.  Sharpens your concentration.
Playing music by yourself requires you to concentrate on things like pitch, rhythm, tempo, note duration, and quality of sound.  Playing music in a group involves even more concentration because you must learn to not only hear yourself, but you must listen to all the other sections and play in harmony with the rest of the group.

11.  Fosters your self-expression and relieves stress.
It’s your instrument, so you can play whatever you want on it!  The more advanced you become on an instrument, the greater you’ll be able to play what you want and how you want.  Music is an art–just like an artist can paint his/her emotions onto a canvas, so can a musician play a piece with emotion.  This has proven to relieve stress and can be a great form of therapy.  In fact, music therapy has been useful in treating children and teens with autism, depression, and other disorders.

12.  Creates a sense of achievement.
Overcoming musical challenges that you thought you’d never quite master can give you a great sense of pride about yourself.  When you first start learning how to play an instrument, it seems like just holding out a note for a couple beats or hitting a high pitch is an amazing accomplishment.  As you practice and become a more experienced musician, making beautiful sounding music pleasing not only to your ear, but others as well is a very rewarding experience.

13.  Promotes your social skills.
Playing an instrument can be a great way to enhance your social skills.  Some of the best people join bands and orchestras, and many times the friends you make here become like family.  It’s very common for people to gain lifelong friendships through musical activities like these.

14.  Boosts your listening skills.
Although it’s pretty obvious, playing an instrument requires you to listen very carefully to things.  You have to learn how to hear when you’re playing a wrong note in order to correct yourself.  Tuning your instrument means hearing if the pitch you’re playing is high (sharp) or low (flat).  When playing in an ensemble, you have to listen for the melody and play softer if you’re the supporting part (accompaniment).  There are too many examples to list every possibility here, but by playing an instrument you are guaranteed to improve your listening skills.

15.  Teaches you discipline.
As previously mentioned, playing an instrument can be very challenging.  One of the qualities that musicians learn is discipline.  Practicing often and working on the hard parts of music and not just the easy and fun stuff requires discipline.  The best musicians in the world are masters of discipline which is why they are so successful on their instrument.

16.  Elevates your performance skills and reduces stage fright.
One of the goals of practicing so much on your instrument is so that you can perform for others.  The more you get up in front of people and perform, the more you’ll reduce any stage fright.  Playing on stage in a band or orchestra helps with stage fright because you’re not alone.  Also, being prepared and really knowing how to play your part makes it much easier to get up and play for a crowd.

17.  Enhances your respiratory system.
If you have a good music director/tutor, you should hear them tell you quite often to “use more air!”  Air is one of the key components in making wonderful-sounding music.  In order to play any piece of music correctly when playing an instrument, you’ll need to take huge breaths and learn how to expel the air properly to make the desired sound.  Breathing exercises are highly recommended for musicians, and they can really strengthen your respiratory system.

18.  Promotes happiness in your life and those around you.
Playing a musical instrument can be very fun and exciting.  Not only is it fun to play music that you enjoy, but it feels wonderful to hear an audience applaud you for giving a great performance.  It can also be very honorable and gratifying to voluntarily play in your local community and see the happiness on people’s faces because they enjoy watching you play.

Conclusion
As you can see, playing a musical instrument has many benefits and hopefully that will motivate you to keep on practicing and always hold music in high esteem.  Whenever you come across challenges as a musician, think about the end results and always remind yourself of all the great reasons you love to play.  I’ll leave you with an inspiring quote by jazz saxophonist and composer Charlie Parker who once said, “Music is your own experience, your thoughts, your wisdom.  If you don’t live it, it won’t come out of your horn.”

If you think of other benefits of playing a musical instrument and you’d like to share or if you have any comments, please fill out the comment box below!

Save Article as PDF

Recent Posts:

Did you like this? Share it:
(Visited 500,969 times, 1 visits today)
Michael Matthews

About Michael Matthews

I've played the French horn for over 14 years and also teach private lessons. Throughout my time with music, I've had some great opportunities playing talented musicians in All-County and All-State groups, as well as playing with the Florida Symphony Youth Orchestra (FSYO). Although my day job isn't music related, I still enjoy teaching and playing music in my spare time.

Subscribe

Subscribe to our e-mail newsletter to receive updates.

187 Responses to 18 Benefits of Playing a Musical Instrument

  1. Joe Laki August 6, 2016 at 9:42 AM #


    Welcome to House of Illuminati church where you can become rich famous and popular in life, Join the Great Illuminati brotherhood in all over the world, We are here to help you change and transform your life in the most positive way. join Illuminate cult online today and get instant sum of 5 million dollars with a free home any where you choose to live in the world and also get 300,000 dollars monthly as a salary… If you are interested please kindly email below {illuminatiworldofpopulation1@gmailCOM}.OR WHATSAPP HIM THROUGH THIS NUMBER +2348115204568 or Call to join +2347060507634
    If you do not want to join the Illuminati do not read this message. Rules * You must be above 18 years of age. * You must not discuss the secret of the Illuminati to anyone. * We are not interested in anyone who has obtained their knowledge about the Illuminati based on what they’ve HEARD from Mass Media (News or Performing Arts), Conspiracy Theorists (Amateur or Professional Authors or Speculators), Internet Rumors, or other HERESY. * Once you join the Illuminati within one week of your membership you will achieved the greatest goal in life and also have wealth and fame. * No one discard the message of the GREAT ILLUMINATI if discarded the person will be tormented both day and night. * Failure to compel to the order and rules of the GREAT ILLUMINATI shall see your fame and riches taken back. *. One of the rules of the Illuminati is "We don't talk about the Illuminati" so I can't say too much about it here. If you are truly interested get back to us via Email: illuminatiworldofpopulation1@gmail.com OR WHATSAPP HIM THROUGH THIS NUMBER +2348115204568 or call +2347060507634 Do not play mind games.

    ReplyReply
  2. Clayton Rich August 7, 2016 at 1:39 AM #


    BROTHERHOOD OF ILLUMINATI CHURCH

    Easy way to join the Illuminati brotherhood in the world.

    Are you a business man or an artist,Politicians and you want to become big, Powerful and famous in the world, join us to become one of our official member today.you shall be given an ideal chance to visit the illuminati and his representative after registrations is completed by you, no sacrifice or human life needed, Illuminati brotherhood brings along wealth and famous in life, you have a full access to eradicate poverty away from your life now. it only a member who is been initiated into the church of illuminati have the authority to bring any member to the church, so before you contact any body you must be link by who is already a member, Join us today and realize your dreams. we also help out our member in protection of drugs pushing,

    once you become a member you will be rich and famous for the rest of your life, illuminati make there member happy so i will want you all to also be a member of the illuminati

    Thanks contact email on illuminatiinitiation666@gmail.com or call+2348137828640

    ReplyReply
  3. Sandy Jake August 7, 2016 at 5:50 AM #


    HOW TO JOIN THE GREAT ILLUMINATI GROUP

    HELLO EVERYONE THIS IS THE OPPORTUNITY.JOIN THE GREAT ILLUMINATI CALL +2347063592030 AND GET RICH WE PROVED MONEY TO PEOPLE THAT ARE MEMBER SO WE WELCOME YOU TO JOIN NOW SAY BY BY TO POVERTY AND GET 18MILLION AFTER INITIATION CALL OR WHASSAP ONE OF THE GREAT HIRE PRIEST IN NIGERIA +2347063592030 or eamil;;agentadamsjohnson@gmail.com If you do not want to join the Illuminati do not read this message. Rules * You must be above 18 years of age. * You must have full access to the internet. * You must not discuss the secret of the Illuminati to anyone. * We are not interested in anyone who has obtained their knowledge about the Illuminati based on what they %u2019ve HEARD from Mass Media (News or Performing Arts), Conspiracy Theorists (Amateur or Professional Authors or Speculators), Internet Rumors, or other HERESY. * Once you join the Illuminati within one week of your membership you will achieved the greatest goal in life and also have wealth and fame and 18millionusd we be give to you ask a new member. * No one discard the message of the GREAT ILLUMINATI if discarded the person will be tormented both day and night.Failure to compel to the order and rules of the GREAT ILLUMINATI shall see your fame and riches taken back. * The money ALWAYS flows TOWARDS Illuminati members…And AWAY from NON Illuminati members… One of the rules of the Illuminati is"We don't talk about the Illuminati"so I can't say too much about it here. If you are truly interested and get back to me via email?.agentadamsjohnson@gmail.com call +2347063592030 Do not play mind games that is how when i want to join the illuminati i was think if this is going to work until i met this right man and call him;'; +2347063592030 thank the great illuminati?

    ReplyReply
  4. John Peter August 7, 2016 at 9:20 PM #


    WELCOME TO THE GREAT BROTHERHOOD.
    Do you want to be a member of Illuminati as a brotherhood that will make you rich and famous in the world and have power to control people in the high place in the worldwide .Are you a business man or woman,artist, political, musician, student, do you want to be rich, famous, powerful in life, join the Illuminati brotherhood cult today and get instant rich sum of. 2 million dollars in a week, and a free home.any where you choose to live in this world and also get 10,000,000 U.S dollars monthly as a salary %2026
    BENEFITS GIVEN TO NEW MEMBERS WHO JOIN ILLUMINATI.
    1. A Cash Reward of USD $500,000 USD
    2. A New Sleek Dream CAR valued at USD $300,000 USD
    3.A Dream House bought in the country of your own choice
    4. One Month holiday (fully paid) to your dream tourist destination.
    5.One year Golf Membership package
    6.A V.I.P treatment in all Airports in the World 7.A total Lifestyle change 8.Access to Bohemian Grove
    9.Monthly payment of $1,000,000 USD into your bank account every month as a member
    10.One Month booked Appointment with Top 5 world Leaders and Top 5 Celebrities in the World.
    If you are interested of joining us in the great brotherhood illuminati satanic hand symbol contact us no +2348074100134 OR on our Email- Illuminatimoney66@gmail.com

    ReplyReply
  5. John Peter August 7, 2016 at 9:21 PM #


    WELCOME TO THE GREAT BROTHERHOOD.
    Do you want to be a member of Illuminati as a brotherhood that will make you rich and famous in the world and have power to control people in the high place in the worldwide .Are you a business man or woman,artist, political, musician, student, do you want to be rich, famous, powerful in life, join the Illuminati brotherhood cult today and get instant rich sum of. 2 million dollars in a week, and a free home.any where you choose to live in this world and also get 10,000,000 U.S dollars monthly as a salary %2026
    BENEFITS GIVEN TO NEW MEMBERS WHO JOIN ILLUMINATI.
    1. A Cash Reward of USD $500,000 USD
    2. A New Sleek Dream CAR valued at USD $300,000 USD
    3.A Dream House bought in the country of your own choice
    4. One Month holiday (fully paid) to your dream tourist destination.
    5.One year Golf Membership package
    6.A V.I.P treatment in all Airports in the World 7.A total Lifestyle change 8.Access to Bohemian Grove
    9.Monthly payment of $1,000,000 USD into your bank account every month as a member
    10.One Month booked Appointment with Top 5 world Leaders and Top 5 Celebrities in the World.
    If you are interested of joining us in the great brotherhood illuminati satanic hand symbol contact us no +2348074100134 OR on our Email- Illuminatimoney66@gmail.com

    ReplyReply

Trackbacks/Pingbacks

  1. Introduction | dataviz102 - August 28, 2016


    […] 18 Benefits of Playing a Musical Instrument […]

  2. Find the Perfect Musical Instrument with Affordable Rentals – Guide to Las Vegas - August 31, 2016


    […] does one good. According to Effective Music Teaching, there are many positive effects of playing musical instruments like exercising the mind, improving hand-eye coordination, sharpening memory, and more. But before […]

Leave a Reply

UA-22718292-1