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Piano Fact

Week 9: Practice Regimen
How much should you practice? That’s the age old question? But there are no easy answers.

Wait a minute! Here’s an easy answer: You need to practice eight hours a day (taking three five minute bathroom breaks, so go easy on the fluid intake).

That’s an easy answer all right, although somewhat insane. Here’s another easy answer: You shouldn’t even practice at all. Never. Not a single minute. That sounds crazy too.

If given the choice, as a piano teacher I’d recommend the latter strategy. Why? Because practice is painful, boring, and tedious. That’s why they call it “practice.”

Notice I didn’t tell you not to play everyday. What I mean is, play as much as you can without making it seem like a chore. If it’s a chore, you’re not going to do it. I mean who’s going to make you practice now, your mother?

All kidding aside, if you want to improve at a reasonable rate, play as much and as often as you can. But make it pleasurable, or else you aren’t going to do it. Give yourself fun songs to play. Try to learn new tricks. Browse. Skip around. Fake it. Don’t be such a perfectionist.

Just make sure you pound the piano as often as you can.

I don’t want to tell you to play an hour each day. Play as long as it remains fun. It may be three hours a day. It may be fifteen minutes every other day. No matter. Either way you will make progress. The more play time, the faster the progress. Just remember: no play, no progress.

And by the way, if you’re looking for some new tricks to inspire you, consider sending for our cassette tape, Piano Tricks and Licks.

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