With the new year rolling in, it’s time to start working on those New Year’s resolutions. For those of you deciding to take up piano, which is a great choice, there are some things to consider when starting out. What type of piano or electric keyboard should you get? Are there any good method books out there? Will I need a lesson teacher? Grace Lam from Artiden answers all these questions and more as she discusses, “What You Need to Start Playing the Piano.”
Here are the must-have tools for beginner pianists:
- A Piano
- Piano Finger Exercise Book
- Piano Method Book
- A Practice Buddy
- A Dedicated Piano Teacher
Everything Grace lists above will help you get started on the right path to becoming the piano virtuoso you’ve always dreamed of being. So, let’s take a look at a couple of these items further:
Start with a keyboard that has 88 keys and make sure its keys are weighted. Weighted keys means there is resistance when you press down on the keys to mimic the hammers on an acoustic piano, so your fingers can develop the strength and agility needed to play difficult music over time. As well, weighted keyboards help you develop a sense of touch as you get used to the pressure needed to get a certain volume.
These suggestions are very important when first starting out. Some electric keyboards have non-weighted keys, so when you press down on them there is little to no resistance. Weighted keys are important because they feel similar to a real piano. As Grace mentions, using weighted keys will help to build up the strength and agility needed to play an acoustic piano. Pianos with weighted keys also tend to have touch sensitivity, which allows you to create dynamics when playing. The volume at which the sound is produced varies depending on how hard or soft you press down the key, again, similar to an acoustic piano.
Another great asset when learning piano is a piano teacher:
Yes, you can learn piano online from youtube videos, but no, you won’t be a great musician, and no, it won’t be fast.
Spend three months with a good piano teacher, and you’ll learn the basics and get your posture issues sorted out. Every beginner pianist has bad posture. Even if you think you’re sitting right and using your wrists (99% of beginners do not use their wrists properly). These issues will bite you in the butt later with possible muscle damage and pain.
While learning online and by yourself is fun and fulfilling, having a piano teacher will help to ensure you are learning everything correctly and effectively. A teacher will also help motivate you to practice each week. A piano teacher can be one of the greatest assets when first starting out, and having someone help you through the learning process can be extremely beneficial.
Grace is a pianist who helps people create a smarter practice routine using psychology techniques. Her blog, Artiden, features her personal experiences as well as lessons in leadership and musicianship. To read all of Grace’s suggestions when first starting piano, please visit the original article here: http://artiden.com/start-piano/