How Long Should I Practice Piano Every Day?
As cliché and old as "practice makes a man perfect" sounds, the quote is still true to this very day. Even more for pianists because the piano is a musical instrument that requires constant practice and determination.
Now you may be wondering, how long should I practice piano every day?
Well, the exact answer depends on many factors, such as your age, the piano piece you want to learn, how much time you can spare, and your piano skill level.
Many will tell you to practice 30 minutes to an hour every day without knowing your capability, which may backfire. No worries, as we'll show you all the possible scenarios and find out how much you should practice piano every day.
How Long Do Professional Pianists Practice Every Day?
If you look at the guidelines and inspiration from professional pianists, it's incredible how diverse they were/are. Each of them had unique practicing routines, and that uniqueness is what makes them professional.
Yuja Wang, a prodigy of the most talented pianists of this generation, practices 2 to 3 hours a day to master a piece that has more than 100 pages. Mastering that many pages require her to practice for 2 weeks straight.
On the other hand, Martha Argerich, a living legend, practices from 30 minutes to a maximum of 2 hours to perfect a piano piece.
Claudio Arrau, famous for his interpretations of the great Beethoven's music, would sometimes practice 18 hours a day in his 20s. Lastly, Shura Cherkassky was seen practicing piano for 4 hours each day.
Professional pianists have to maintain a constant practice session. As piano playing is their career or passion, they have to constantly improve their skills, which requires many hours of practice. Playing a complex piece also requires them to practice for more hours.
The reason for showing you these routines is to understand that even top-level pianists did not have the same piano practice routine. It means the length of daily practice sessions is subjective to the piano player.
Here's what you need to do for that -
Setting Goals For Piano Practice
Before you search the entire internet to find the proper piano practicing routine, wait for a second and ask yourself, "what's my practice goal? What do I want?" As harsh as it sounds, aimlessly practicing piano won't get you anywhere.
First, you need to set a goal, precisely a realistic and achievable goal. Not all of us can handle the same pressure level, so please specify the goal according to what you think you can achieve.
You can split the goals into 2 parts, one is short-term, and the other is long. Splitting them will make things easier for you.
A short-term goal is when you don't want to take piano as your primary objective or career. For example, learning a piano chord just so you can recreate a TV shows' intro or a pop song and post it online. It falls under short-term goals.
Another example is to learn piano to relieve stress after a long day at work. Or maybe your little boy/girl likes music, so you get him/her a piano to hone their potential skills. Getting into the school band as a pianist also falls under short-term goals.
If you have a short-term goal in mind, you can practice piano for 30 minutes, 6 days a week. You can practice more than 30 minutes a day, but that'd just be overkill.
A long-term goal is when you choose piano as your primary career, meaning your main/side source of income will be playing piano, or your main objective is to master it.
For example, if you want a degree in music from a college or university. Such achievement will require great sacrifice. Unlike short-term goals, long-term goals are hard to achieve.
You have to prepare yourself for all the tiresome practice days. Practicing classical music chords also falls under this category.
Even after hearing all these, your passion for piano is still burning? Yes, you are truly ready for the roll.
If you have a long-term goal in mind, you should practice for at least an hour daily. And if you think you can practice for longer, you are welcome to do it.
How Long Should I Practice Piano Every Day?
Okay, so you have pinned your goals and now want to know how long should you practice every day. Before getting into that, please note that all these lessons apply to digital piano players as well.
If You Are A Beginner Piano Learner
If you are just starting to take a piano lesson(s) or returning to the hobby after a long slumber, chances are, your hands haven't acclimated to the piano yet. In that case, do not practice more than 30 minutes a day. 20 minutes is the sweet spot.
Let your hands get used to the piano first. Forcing them with lengthy practice sessions won't give you expected results. 5 or 6 days a week will enhance your muscle memory.
If You Are An Intermediate Piano Learner
Once you reach an intermediate level, things get a bit complex as you see new materials. Besides piano practice, you'll also need dedication. Without that, new materials will take weeks to learn.
For intermediate piano learners, at least 45 minutes of practice is fine. We recommend you practice regularly, but you can get away with it 6 days a week. Increasing the practice time from 45 minutes to an hour may help you become better at it.
You can break down the practice session into two parts: 45 minutes for music, and 15 minutes for technical stuff, such as piano scale.
If You Are An Advanced Pianist
If you have reached an advanced level, chances are, you're majoring in music or wanting to be a professional pianist. You can get away with an hour of practice, but it will take relatively longer to master a new sheet of music. So, you should practice for 2 to 3 hours regularly.
Just a reminder, practicing piano regularly for an hour or two is better than practicing 5 to 6 hours twice or thrice a week.
The path to becoming a professional is tough because advanced piano players need to maintain their current skills and learn new ones simultaneously. If you are still a piano student and facing trouble playing any chord, we suggest contacting your piano teacher.
Piano Practice Based On Age
It is not a surprise that a 5 year old kid will not have the same attention span as a 25 year old adult. So, you can categorize the piano practice by age as well.
Piano Practice For Kids
As you know, kids have a low attention span, so practicing for extended periods will result in nothing. This is why 4 to 7 year old kids should practice from 15 to 20 minutes a day unless a kid has unique talents.
It seems like a short duration, but the primary purpose is to develop their brain for daily piano practice. If a kid is above 8 to 12, it's enough to practice 30 minutes daily.
Piano Practice For Teens And Adults
If you are a teen, you should practice for 45 minutes each day. Of course, the time will vary depending on your skill level.
For adults, the time could increase to even as long as 3 hours a day. If you think that you can practice for that long every day, make sure to follow our guidelines on practicing piano every day.
How Should You Practice Piano Every Day?
So, you know how to set goals and how long you should practice each day. Now all that remains is how you should do it. Here it is -
Every human being needs rest. We are not robots that can constantly work without a break. Pushing yourself by practicing for hours without a break can hamper your practice.
If you plan on practicing for more than an hour, you should split it up. Maybe divide the 2-hour practice session into three segments of 40 minutes.
Not doing so will cause strains and focus loss. It also applies to online piano lessons.
Hand And Finger Exercises
Only mastering the piano alone won't take you to the top. You have to master your own body as well. Specifically, your hand and finger provide the flexibility to play piano scales.
You should first practice the correct hand position. Fix your hand posture so that you can easily reach the keys. You can also do finger drills. Always use both your left hand and right hand in a flow.
Try practicing ascending and descending pentascales. You can also practice 5 note pentascales using one finger per note. Doing these things will improve your hand and finger muscle memory.
Asking For Feedbacks
Sometimes we over or under-appreciate ourselves. To ensure this does not happen, asking for feedback is the right thing to do.
Maybe invite your friends over to your place, play the piano, and ask them how it was. Depending on the response, you might get motivated, or your hunger to learn more will increase. Both of which are good things.
If you have no one to listen to your music, record your play and listen to it yourself. Maybe you might not like someone else criticizing your play, but you won't mind criticism from yourself.
As obvious as it sounds, you can't learn piano overnight or even months. This is why you have to build a mindset that you will commit to learning piano for a long time.
Sometimes you might not be able to play your favorite music lessons properly, and that's okay. Learning to accept these things is what makes or breaks a pianist.
Learning piano is a commitment that requires lots of time. All the countless hours spent learning piano will go to waste if you don't see any results. So, if you ask, how long should I practice piano every day? It really depends on why and how you want to dive into this journey.
There's no shortcut to mastering piano, but following the proper guidelines will ensure all those hours of practice bear fruit and give you a pleasant experience in your piano journey.