Learning to play music at an advanced age: which instrument to choose?
Did you used to play the piano and did you stop at some point? Did you used to enjoy playing the guitar, but decided to give it up decades ago? Many people who retire do go back to playing a musical instrument. Usually an instrument they already know. But I’m also not afraid to learn to play a whole new instrument. Because although the older brain has more difficulty learning, it’s good and fun to put your brain to work. And then the satisfaction when it works!
Music is good for you
It’s scientifically proven: listening to music is good for you. That’s what brain research shows. Not only does it make you smarter, it also keeps your brain functioning better into old age. It has been shown that important brain functions deteriorate less quickly in musicians. Not for nothing is ‘Making music’ one of the ‘ten commandments of the brain’ of René Kahn.
Which instrument suits you?
If you have decided you want to learn to play music, then comes that one question: which instrument do you choose? It depends on a number of factors. Do you especially like melody or are you crazy about rhythms? Do you like to play classical, pop, rock or another genre? Do you want to keep playing alone or do you prefer to play with others? These are useful questions to ask yourself. Because if you like classical music, for example, you won’t easily end up with a saxophone. Do you want to be less dependent on teamwork with others? Then you can make your own music sound full with a piano. Do you like rhythm? Then you will not only be able to play percussion, but also (bass)guitar. And do you want quick results? Then perhaps an accordion is something for you.
Learning to read notes, is that really necessary?
Many people don’t want to learn how to read music. It may even keep you from picking up an instrument. But there’s no need for that. For many instruments it is not necessary that you can read music. It does depend a bit on the musical instrument. For example, you can learn to play guitar without notes. If you learn the chords, you’ll go a long way. Also drumming can be learned perfectly without chords.
Moreover, nowadays there are alternative notations with which you can learn to play music. A good example is klavarskribo. This is a ‘what you see is what you get’ method for piano, organ and keyboard. With klavarskribo you learn very quickly to point out each note on the right part of the keyboard and to play it in the right rhythm, regardless of the key. YouTube is also a great help here. More and more young people are learning to play the piano using alternative, visually stimulating music notation. Maybe this is something for you too? See the video below.
Find a music teacher
Do you want to learn to play a certain instrument, but have no idea how to go about it? Then it’s smart to take music lessons. Find a music teacher who suits you and with whom you enjoy coming. Because if it’s fun, you learn easier. Don’t you want to learn how to read notes? Then select your teacher on that. It is best to take a trial lesson first. Then you’ll know soon enough if it clicks.
Or learn on YouTube
Would you rather not have music lessons? Then YouTube is a godsend. You will always find a teacher who teaches through videos. From beginner to advanced. The advantage of YouTube is that you can watch the video as many times as you want. For example, if you can’t master something easily. The disadvantage is that no one can see to it that you are doing the exercises correctly. You can often find different teaching methods and teachers. Choose what appeals to you!
Am I not too old to learn?
You’re never too old to learn, goes the saying. That’s right, of course. Although it is true that your brain learns best when you are still a growing child. Because during this time in your life, a lot of attention from your brain goes to developing your fine motor skills. Once your fine motor skills have developed, learning will be more difficult. But isn’t that also the challenge? When you learn you excite your brain. In fact, your brain literally grows, even in old age. This is called neuroplasticity. So are you motivated and do you really enjoy it? Go for it!
Pension in sight
When you retire, quite a few things change. Your financial situation, your daily rhythm and your social activities. Your health, meaning and relationships. It can be difficult to find a balance. In the training Retirement in sight we offer you the space to reflect on your workable life and look ahead to your retirement. A moment of reflection at a unique location. In inspiring sessions you will gain the insights you need to design your new life.
We have listed all aspects of your pension for you in a checklist. Request the free checklist now. Do you want to actively prepare for your retirement? Then take a look at our
pension in sight training courses