Each and every student I have had the luck to teach has come to me with a different story to the next. Sometimes it is a want to take up playing as a hobby because the person has “always wanted to learn” or because they are learning at school and really enjoy it. For others it’s that they want to surprise a special someone on their birthday, as you can tell it’s not often you get two of the same reasons for learning to play the piano.
However, you do get the same myths over and over again – so it’s time to debunk the myths.
Myth 1 – I’m A Beginner, I Don’t Need An Experienced Piano Teacher
Learning the piano can be fun and fulfilling, however if you don’t have a good foundation to your learning you will struggle to improve continuously. An experience piano teacher will give you a solid foundation on which to build your musical skills, both in playing the piano and otherwise.
An experienced piano teacher can take your aims and combine them with objective based learning, which in the long run will mean you can not only achieve your goals but also much more along the way.
Myth 2 – I’m Too Old To Learn
This is a huge myth that haunts many who are looking to learn to play piano but have never learnt at school, or those who have but have subsequently forgotten how. So, let me be clear.
Almost any person of any age can learn how to play the piano, and it is usually easier than you think!
My oldest student was 92! And she was a beginner!
Myth 3 – Regular Piano Practice Is Impossible With My Schedule
“Nothing Good is Ever Simple” someone once told me, and is true.
If you have a desire to learn how to play the piano, then you can and will be able too with a little effort. When you are first starting to learn you don’t need to put hours and hours aside each week, regular short practice sessions are often more fruitful – perhaps 30 minutes each evening.
Once you get into the habit of practicing a little each day it will become easier to slot in a little more practice where possible – I often practice a little whilst waiting for a cake to bake!
Myth 4 – Lessons Cost Too Much
Currently (18/8/14) piano lessons cost only £14 for half an hour and £22 for a whole hour. To put this into perspective, that could be a few drinks at a bar or local Starbucks or a meal from your favourite takeaway.
Piano Lessons have been found to generally help the student to express themselves more freely, and from an academic view, the improvement in students’ skills in foreign languages, mathematics, and fine motor coordination are well-known. Finally, the creativity often found in keen piano players, of all experience levels, is often found to spill over into other parts of life as they’re experience grows.
All in all, learning to play the piano is not expensive, but it is rewarding in the long-term and not just in the short-term.
Myth 5 – If I Make Mistakes My Teacher Will “Drop” Me
This is a common myth, more commonly spoken by younger students. However it’s simply not true, as with most teachers, we actually prefer to see our students working hard and overcoming difficulties. We enjoy working with students to ensure that they can overcome any mistakes they are making, this for me is often through helping the student with exercises based around fingering techniques, seating position, hand position, eye movements and more.
I will never “drop” a student for making a mistake, as long as the student is trying I will work with them to overcome this difficulty.
As I’ve said above “Nothing Good is Ever Simple” so try, try and try again.
Myth 6 – I Can’t Afford A “Really Good” Piano
This is often something I hear from new students who want to run before they can walk. I always impress upon students who are just starting to learn the piano that, practice is more important than having a “really good” piano. In essence this means that having a relatively good keyboard to practice on is better than having no piano at all.
Having a real piano is better than an electric keyboard but is often out of the reach of students, this is understandable, but piano is not about the hardware you are using but the enjoyment you and others derive from playing.
If you are looking to learn how to play the piano, you can learn more about the Piano Lessons I offer by clicking here.
Special thanks to Iain Petrie, my dad, for use of his great photo above.