The Importance of Consistent Practice
For music students of all ages, having consistent practice is essential to seeing steady improvement and growth on the instrument. Music is a highly-complex art form – as it demands so
many different skills at one time including reading rhythms and notes, translating rhythms and notes to the fingers, and understanding the varying concepts and structure of the music. In addition, this information raises the golden question: why is consistent practice important?
Consistent practice is important because it establishes a routine and develops momentum with the repertoire. Because music has so many varying components that challenges a person both physically and mentally, having the most exposure possible is the easiest way to understand the complexities that it brings to the table. Especially for young students, developing a routine and setting goals with practice is something that will translate to other interests and activities that will be rewarding. There are many different ways that someone can practice. Of course, the main form of practice is the time spent on the instrument. With that said, it’s unrealistic to always have the time available to practice. Another great way to stay connected is to listen to a wide-variety of music. This can be done while spending time at home, driving around, or with other activities. Attending concerts of favorite artists and going to local performances to talk and meet with other musicians is also a great way to learn and grow in music.
With practices at home, here are some things to keep in mind:
1. Choose what practice schedule works best for you and your child. Mornings are usually best simply because practices are more efficient when someone is rested. Regardless, planning and setting aside times that work with your personal schedule is a great way to make the practices happen.
2. Short but steady practices. If you have a busy schedule and struggle with finding available time, planning shorter but more frequent practices 3-4 times a week is a great way to stay engaged with the instrument and retain the music.
3. Finding the right repertoire. Everyone has different types of music that they enjoy, and playing repertoire that is interesting and liked is vital for a student to stay excited and engaged.
4. Efficient practicing. Especially when starting a new piece, learning a large amount of new notes and adjusting to the information on the music can be intimidating at times. When practicing, breaking the amount of notes down and practicing one part of the piece is a great way to get comfortable with the notes. With this, it can help shape a practice plan moving forward.
5. Using apps for practice. There are many digital options for practice when learning any instrument. There are a large number of apps available that have music-themed games and interactive activities that are centered around different concepts of music. Also, most series of music books offer an online component that provides examples and other information within a certain level and song.
6. Talking with your teacher. At the end of the day, your music teacher is the best resource for customized recommendations based on your interests and goals. Whether it is finding a version of a song that is a fit for your skill level to receiving practice feedback, your teacher can help immensely with setting goals and giving ideals for efficient practice.
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