16 Benefits Of Playing An Instrument
by Mike Levitsky
Choosing to play an instrument is the beginning of a journey. One that is exciting, but often filled with struggle and hard work. It will require you to take in new information and master new skills.
Listed below are some of the many benefits of playing an instrument. When you feel yourself getting discouraged, remember to keep these benefits in mind.
I hope these encourage you to keep practicing. I promise, playing a musical instrument is worthwhile.
In No Particular Order, Learning To Play An Instrument:
Increases Emotional Perception
In 2009, the European Journal of Science investigated the relationship between musical training and the processing of vocal emotion. They found that those who were musically trained better detected vocal emotions. This makes sense because there are many “emotions” conveyed through music. For example, excitement is produced through dynamics that get progressively louder and higher pitched. Apparently, being exposed to this tonal variance in music can help you to not just detect the emotions of music but the emotions behind people’s words.
Increases Personal Discipline
No one (unless you are insanely gifted) can effectively learn to play an instrument overnight. Making music requires work and a consistent investment of time and effort. As they say, perfect practice makes perfect. Discipline is necessary to go through the process of consistent, focused practice, especially when you would rather watch that new movie. This discipline can carry over into other aspects of your life, elevating the quality of the life you live.
Enlarges The Brain
Another study in 2003 from the Journal of Neuroscience compared the brains of professional musicians, amateur musicians, and non-musicians. The study found an increase in gray matter in many areas of the brain of professional musicians. The amateur musicians had less grey matter in those areas, and the non-musicians had the least gray matter. According to Via Radiology, gray matter provides us with information processing power. The more advanced you are in music the larger volume of gray matter you have in your brain.
The process of learning music leads to you playing in front of other people. This could include playing in front of your teacher, playing at a seasonal recital, or playing for curious family and friends. This fosters the valuable expertise and grit necessary to confidently hold it together when other people are watching.