Is it hard to start piano lessons as a beginner?

Find out if you're up to the piano challenge!

Every time that someone is interested in piano lessons, they ask the same question: “is it hard to play the piano?” This post will reply to one of the most Frequently Asked Questions about starting to play piano. (See also: which piano to buy?)

The same people reply to this question in two different ways: when they see a highly acrobatic passage played by a pianist they say: “playing piano is really difficult”. At the same time, when they see a pianist make everything so easy to be played, they tend to say: “piano is really easy to play!”.

In both cases, the answer is based only on a perceptional level and not on something experienced in first person.

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Time, habits and patience

Because everyone has different experiences in their lives, starting piano lessons could be easier a more difficult than expected. In both cases, starting taking piano lessons require you a change on different levels. Firstly time wise, taking time for having piano lessons and practicing sessions, and secondly habit-wise; with the second one people have more trouble!

Developing patience in seeking instant results plus developing the right self-discipline for practicing regularly is what makes learning to play the piano more difficult than it should be.

If we for example take a look at the physical part of playing piano, the problem is learning new movements or adopting better usage of the muscles and tendons; this is where adults people have more difficulties compared to children. After a life time of using the body in determinate ways, the problem is to get rid of some habits and to develop better ones, more suited for playing piano. Of course, this take time and patience.

Surely, once one thing is being particularly well studied and drilled, it’ll become easier and easier, if not natural. At that point, it’s time to learn something a little bit more difficult, which will become easier in the future!

So: easy or difficult?

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The question “Is it difficult?” can be asked for different activities: Is it difficult to do gym? Is it difficult to swim? Is it difficult to kite surf? Is it difficult to learn a new programming language? And on, and on, and on…

There’s no definitive answer to these questions: yes, no, I don’t know – they have all the same value. It always depends on which grade of expertise you want to reach in that field! Because we all know that it’s difficult to become the next Bolt, the next Phelps, the  next Margaret Hamilton!

Better questions are: “which level of piano playing do you want to reach” – the question will be easier to be replied.

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