Sure, playing the piano is fun, and has a lot of different benefits, but have you ever thought about what your brain is actually doing when you’re playing a tune through different outlets of your body?
Eyes – When you’re sight reading music, your eyes have to focus on two lines at the same time, in different clefs. This is a basic function of your brain’s ‘motor cortex.’
Hands – When you’re playing a song, oftentimes your hands will have to play in two completely different rhythms at the same time. This also uses the motor cortex, as well as the cerebellum.
Touch – Pianists know the importance of dynamics, so on top of the hand-eye coordination required to play, touch is also an extremely important factor when it comes to putting more force on particular keys in order to make them louder, or less to make them softer.
Fingers – Can you think of another instrument that requires you to use all ten fingers at once? That’s a lot to think about!
We’ll talk more about the ‘artistic’ side your brain has to use when it comes to playing the piano in another newsletter.
For now, take pride in knowing that every time you sit down to play, your mind is working in overdrive just to make sure your body is performing the way it’s supposed to – and that makes you pretty smart!