Music Creates MAGIC for Those Who Play It, Listen to It - Agility

Play It Forward’s mission creates MAGIC in its students: Mental Wellness, Agility, Grit, Independence and Community. This week, PIF highlights Agility.

Agility

Practicing the piano involves both your feet and hands and improves the dexterity and flexibility of your fingers. You literally improve your grasp of music by practicing chord patterns and songs, experts note.

“When you play, your brain must tell each hand to perform separate actions,” states a recent article at pianodreamers.com. “Your right and left hands will play different notes at the same time, following different rhythms and moving in opposite directions. Honing this ability benefits you beyond the keyboard. These benefits include improved reaction times, athleticism and agility. Keyboard skills may even expand your typing skills, making you more productive at work.”

Playing the piano affects your brain’s neuroplasticity, the ability of the brain to change form and function specifically when stimulated by physical activity, according to pianoemporium.com.

“While playing a piece on the piano, you are adding new neural connections, which primes your brain for other forms of communication,” the site notes.

Interestingly, music in general has shown evidence of improving athletic ability – in a 2013 study of badminton players by researchers in India, the players who engaged in musical therapy in conjunction with their physical training showed more agility than those who did not listen to music along with their agility training. Similar results were found in cyclists who sought to improve their performance by utilizing music therapy, the paper noted.

“A child growing up with both music education and athletic participation can learn many valuable skills, both cognitive and physical, that lead to a more significant development and success in learning and potentially his or her future career,” notes a 2018 article on the music blog Alfred.com. “Therefore, children should be encouraged to stay active in both music and sport as long as the desire and motivation are prevalent.”

Accessibility