Playing the piano isn’t just about having fast and agile hands. Rather, it requires good posture and breathing. Though you might not feel it now, having bad piano playing posture will definitely affect you in the long run. So, if you’re feeling any backaches or finger pains, here are some tips on how to play piano comfortably.
Unlike guitarists who use the tips of their fingers to play, you, as a pianist, should use the pads of your fingers. With that in mind, make it a habit not to flatten your fingers when you play. This causes your hand and fingers to feel a strain. On top of that, you’ll also be slower when it comes to switching notes. So, instead of flattening your fingers, try to keep them in a curled position.
If you’re not sure about how curled up your fingers should be, try putting both of your hands on your knees. How your hands are curled up on your knees dictates how they should be positioned while you play. Remember, your hands should look as if they were holding an apple.
Simply put, your spine should be shaped like an “S” whenever you’re playing. Most beginners tend to have a hunched back when they play, causing their spine to form a “C.” Maintaining a hunched position causes backaches and neck pains (especially if you play for an extended periods). This said, sitting at the piano is different from sitting on a chair. How you sit affects how you play and breathe.
To sit at the piano properly, your knees should be slightly under the keyboard. Also, your feet should also be stable on the ground. Try not to hunch your shoulders as well. Instead, your shoulders should be loose, with your elbows slightly higher than the keyboard. Maintain a straight-yet comfortable-back; this way you wouldn’t experience any pains on your lower back should you play for an extended period of time. Take note of your head as well; imagine you’re a marionette being held by an imaginary string with your chin perpendicular to the floor and your eyes looking straight. It takes practice, but in time you’ll know how to play piano without being conscious of your posture.
Sometimes, however, it’s the piano bench that causes the problem. You may be too tall or too short to maintain a stable, comfortable posture. If you’re too tall, you can adjust your piano’s bench by adding extra layers of padding (i.e., carpet samples work great). Now if you’re too short, try adding a footstool to reinforce your feet on the ground. Remember, your piano bench shouldn’t just be able to hold your weight; rather, it should also make you feel comfortable as well.
Most beginners tend to hold their breaths when they start playing. Obviously, not being able to breathe in a smooth, continuous manner is bad news for the beginning pianist. See, if you don’t breathe your muscles will tighten up. When it does, you’ll be having problems with dexterity-causing you to be slow when changing notes. Worse, you’ll also have a harder time learning how to sing while playing. So be sure to take big, deep breaths during a piece.
If you’re still feeling any pain, always remember to relax. Learning how to play piano comfortably is as important as being able to master the technical aspects of the instrument. So relax, stay loose, and breathe. Keep this habit up and you can play and enjoy the piano for a long time!
A Computer Engineering student and loves to travel. Reading current news in the internet is one of his past times. Taking pictures of the things around him fully satisfies him. He loves to play badminton and his favorite pets are cats.
For more information and queries, check out the How to Play Piano lessons guide.