The Adult Beginner
There are many adults who look back and regret stopping their childhood violin or viola lessons. Likewise, there are many adults who never had the opportunity to learn a stringed instrument and who now would love to learn to play the violin or viola.
Renowned physicist, Albert Einstein, was also an amateur violinist. Playing the violin in his limited spare time gave him enormous rewards. Einstein summed up the place of music in his life quite simply: “I know that the most joy in my life has come to me from my violin.”
Unfortunately, many adults have the wrong notion that learning the violin or viola will just be too difficult for them. They think that as adults they will:
- Lack flexibility
- Progress too slowly
- Find learning to read music too difficult
Other hurdles adult beginners sometimes encounter include not knowing how to find a good teacher, or how to go about buying the right violin or viola, a lack of support from friends and family, and even feelings of embarrassment.
The reality is all of these hurdles can be overcome and don’t need to prevent you from learning to play the violin. Yes, some aspects may be more challenging but with time, perseverance, and the right teacher you can learn to play the violin or viola and find that joy that Einstein spoke of.
Adult learners even have some important advantages over young beginners. Adult learners:
- Tend to enjoy the challenges and difficulties of learning a new skill more than young children
- Have generally developed more patience and perseverance
- Are better equipped to use imaginative skills for learning
- Value the long-term benefits of learning a new skill
In fact, you can teach old dogs new tricks. The human brain is remarkably plastic and so learning to read music or developing the intricate co-ordination skills for playing a stringed instrument is not only possible but positively beneficial for adults.
And speaking of long-term benefits, the research shows pretty clearly that learning a musical instrument builds up a huge array of neural connections that help slow and may even prevent the brain degeneration associated with dementia.
And you’ll be surprised at how many new friends you make. Add in the pleasure you can get from making music with the many community music groups who will welcome your new skills with open arms and you’ll wonder why you didn’t start years ago.
On the 28th and 29th November, Pro-am Strings is offering a free opportunity to begin your journey as an adult learner of the violin or viola. Join a wonderfully supportive community of like-mined adult violin/viola beginners in the Pro-am Strings free live online class, ‘The Adult Beginner’. We’ll cover all those challenging issues that may have stopped you before and answer questions you may not even have thought of. Experience the joy of being an adult learner with Henriette de Vrijer, your online violin/viola teacher. You can Register for this class here.
This post was written by Stylus writer, a former professional violinist/ violist who has taken his gift for phrasing and tone into the world of words. You can learn more about his work at http://styluswriter.com/
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