Debunking Myths On Learning To Play An Instrument Later In LifeAugust 9th, 2019 by Cassidy Welling
Learning to play an instrument decreases THE RISK OF AGE-RELATED MENTAL DECLINE as well as hearing loss, according to a number of studies. In fact, many people into their 50's and 60's report positive changes on both their mental and physical states, as well as their overall well-being. There are many misconceptions about LEARNING TO PLAY AN INSTRUMENT, especially when it comes to adult education, but there are truthfully a number of reasons that prove it's never too late to learn.
The Brain Can Always Change
Perhaps one of the biggest myths surrounding the later learning of a musical instrument is the common belief that the brain is set in its ways after puberty. In fact, the BRAIN MAINTAINS ITS ABILITY TO GROW and change throughout our lifetime. This is good news for the increasing number of FOLKS THAT ARE TAKING EARLIER RETIREMENT; not only will you have the time to do anything and everything you've always wanted, but nothing is truly off limits in this capacity. It may not come quite as easily as it would have at age 5, but it's more than possible, and well worth your efforts. According to many music teachers, actual ability is fairly low on the list of necessities when it comes to learning to play an instrument. It's desire, attitude, and patience that head up the list. Luckily, adults have these traits in more abundance, which may give adult learning a leg-up.
Advantages to Learning as an Adult or Senior
Along with the myth of set-in-stone cognitive ability, there's also a lot of fallacy surrounding actually becoming a beginner-level student as an adult or senior. In fact, there are many ways to begin, including at-home training, tutors, and online courses, and they aren't just geared towards children. What's more is that there are a number of ASPECTS OF LEARNING AS AN ADULT that have an advantage over learning in youth. As an adult, you're free to choose what you want to learn, as well as when, while children are often limited to certain varieties and time frames. Additionally, adults have a sense of self-discipline and determination that younger individuals may struggle with. This gives them a drive to be successful in their efforts, provided it's something they truly want to engage in, of course.
Granted that a true desire to learn is a necessity, it's another common misconception that learning anything new, particularly something more involved like an instrument, will bring about an increase in stress levels. If learning an instrument isn't something enjoyable for an individual, that may well be the case. In those that truly want to learn and enjoy it, it can actually reduce stress levels and improve overall mood and well-being. Music education has been found to AID THE PRODUCTION AND RELEASE OF DOPAMINE, a feel-good chemical in the brain, which can also improve levels of concentration and sleep quality.
As you can see, there's no reason not to take up learning an instrument, no matter what your age. In fact, there are clearly multiple reasons to take up the hobby, not to mention the added benefit of putting to rest the myths that surround adult learning, and ending the associated stigmas.