How long will it take to learn the piano? This is a very difficult question to answer and it’s the one question that most prospective students always ask! Here are 5 key points to remember:
1. How much time do you have to dedicate to studying the piano? A child who is just starting to learn may only be able to concentrate for 10 minutes per day especially if they are only 5 or 6 years old. So progress may take time for youngsters; it can take a couple of years for them to grasp the basics. An adult on the other hand, will understand more swiftly and will be able to focus for at least 30 or 40 minutes a day. That is if they have the time; adults usually have many other distractions.
2. Children are more flexible physically than adults and, if they have an aptitude for playing, they can make progress very quickly. They may find it possible to achieve a competent standard in a year or two. Adults are not so flexible (generally), often suffering from physical (as well as mental) tension and this could potentially impede their development.
3. Anyone can make significant progress with their playing if they have an inspiring teacher. This is probably the most important point; it is vital to find a good teacher who will keep you sufficiently motivated to return for lessons week after week. Weekly lessons are the most beneficial (many students choose to go fortnightly).
4. It’s important to set aside time for regular practice sessions; this will allow you to focus completely on this new and exciting but challenging task. However, with regular practice you will definitely progress more quickly. Remember learning music is like learning a new language. So be kind to yourself and be patient! Adults especially can be very impatient.
5. You will progress quickly if you develop a passion for playing. This is true for any activity; if you love it, you will focus on it and then it may become an obsession. It’s at this point that a student’s playing really starts taking off!
Everyone is capable of playing the piano to some extent. It’s true that some students are much quicker mentally than others, but you won’t know how much talent you possess until you apply yourself. In my experience, it normally takes 2 to 3 years to play to a competent level (approximately grades 2/3 of the ABRSM exam system).
My new book, So You Want To Play The Piano? has lots of useful information for the beginner and it is published by Indepenpress. You can buy your copy from my book website; www.soyouwanttoplaythepiano.com