Top 5 Ways to Make Practicing Fun


Practice is a dirty word. It conjures up images of going through drills, exercises, plenty of effort for little reward and frustration. While learning a new piece may be hard, the strategies don’t have to be. Remember: there is a difference between effort and intelligent effort.

In music, there is the old saying “practice makes perfect”. However, knowing that “perfect” might involve hours on the piano, it is understandable that many are put off starting on an instrument at all. In recent years, “perfect” has been realized more as “proficient” or “musically sound”

Too often people would like to play a piece from their favorite composer/songwriter/pop artist who think that they can get away with doing the bare minimum and still expect good results. Life, as we know, does not work like that. Ultimately, you can never be really good and excel at something you haven’t worked at consistently. And the key word here is WORK.

1. Avoid Procrastination

Most of us have at some point felt like putting off that task for yet another time even though we know in the back of our minds, it is important and must be done, sooner or later. In the case of piano practice, here is a tip to help you break down that psychological barrier: break it down. Aim to focus for just FIVE minutes on whatever you have on your agenda to work on. Focus intently doing as much as you can. You’ll soon find 5 minutes passing by quickly and you becoming immersed in whatever you are learning.

2. Be Patient

Getting to the piano and starting practice is one thing, but the ability to maintain a positive outlook when things repeatedly go wrong (as they sometimes do) is crucial. You must develop a focus by taking each practice session with a grain of salt and enjoy the process. Having this attitude helps to direct your focus if you need to make notes and corrections.

3. Write Things Down

The physical act of writing what you’re learning will help you retain the information. Too often, people ‘went at a piece many times and didn’t get anywhere’. The reason for this is ‘unfocused repetition’. Doing the same thing over and over again and expecting a different result, is (according to Einstein and others) ‘insanity’. In the case of piano practice, repeating a passage many times over and yet making the same mistake each time, only leads you to a) form the mistake as a habit and b) frustration. So make sure you are taking short pauses now and then to make slight corrections, notes and other insights when repeating a section of music many times – it’s the quality and quantity that counts.

4. Create Games To Help Remember Important Details

Furthermore, reward yourself for winning at the game or achieving your goal. For example, line up 5 of your favorite sweets on the piano stand. Practice 5 scales. Each time you get one of your scales perfect, take one sweet and eat it! Most importantly, have a strategy for making your practice fun and effective. The psychology of achievement and the other payoffs can be huge when we achieve small goals.

5. Record Your Progress

Use an audio or video recorder to document the progress along the way, this will do wonders for motivation.

This article was researched from the following website:




About mymuco1

Ian Green wears hats in many areas of the music industry including: co-founder of a technology start-up company that designs music education tools for mobile devices and the internet; music educator; music festival adjudicator; professional classical and jazz pianist; member in good standing of Ontario Registered Music Teachers' Association; member of provincial council of Ontario Registered Music Teachers' Association; member of the Canadian Music Festival Adjudicators Association (C.M.F.A.A.) Thanks!
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