Welcome to the Piano World Piano Forums
Over 2 million posts about pianos, digital pianos, and all types of keyboard instruments
Join the World's Largest Community of Piano Lovers (it's free)
It's Fun to Play the Piano ... Please Pass It On!

SEARCH
the Forums & Piano World

This custom search works much better than the built in one and allows searching older posts.
(ad 125) Sweetwater - Digital Keyboards & Other Gear
Digital Pianos at Sweetwater
(ad) Pearl River
Pearl River Pianos
(ad) Pianoteq
(ad) P B Guide
Acoustic & Digital Piano Guide
PianoSupplies.com (150)
Piano Accessories Music Related Gifts Piano Tuning Equipment Piano Moving Equipment
We now offer Gift Certificates in our online store!
(ad) Estonia Piano
Estonia Piano
Quick Links to Useful Stuff
Our Classified Ads
Find Piano Professionals-

*Piano Dealers - Piano Stores
*Piano Tuners
*Piano Teachers
*Piano Movers
*Piano Restorations
*Piano Manufacturers
*Organs

Quick Links:
*Advertise On Piano World
*Free Piano Newsletter
*Online Piano Recitals
*Piano Recitals Index
*Piano Accessories
* Buying a Piano
*Buying A Acoustic Piano
*Buying a Digital Piano
*Pianos for Sale
*Sell Your Piano
*How Old is My Piano?
*Piano Books
*Piano Art, Pictures, & Posters
*Directory/Site Map
*Contest
*Links
*Virtual Piano
*Music Word Search
*Piano Screen Saver
*Piano Videos
*Virtual Piano Chords
Topic Options
#2098417 - 06/08/13 12:39 AM Ways to learn away from the piano
Pierre-Luc Offline
Full Member

Registered: 11/21/12
Posts: 33
Loc: Montreal
Hi guys!

I've been away from the piano for at least 6 months now due to an injury to both hands. I have played for 3 full months before that and was really enjoying it.

Would you be able to recommend any aspect of piano that can be practiced away from it while my hands recover?

As an example, I know there are softwares that you can use to practice sight reading but I'm wondering if my time could be better spent practicing and learning something else.

Thanks in advance for any recommendation you may have for me.

Pierre-Luc
_________________________
Yamaha YDP-181
Alfred's All-in-One Level 2

Top
(ads P/S)

Petrof Pianos

#2098525 - 06/08/13 09:33 AM Re: Ways to learn away from the piano [Re: Pierre-Luc]
Sand Tiger Online   content
1000 Post Club Member

Registered: 03/25/12
Posts: 1069
Loc: Southern California
Hi Pierre-Luc,

For a person not that familiar with classical music, the free Yale music appreciation course is good:
http://oyc.yale.edu/music/musi-112

A person can listen to music, which will help develop their ear. Doing so in combination with the Yale course will give a person a much deeper understanding, which will help most pianists when it comes time to play.

There are other apps for ear training and rhythm training. Some like to study sheet music, but a true beginner at three months may not find much value in that. On YouTube there are tutorials on basics, as well as performances of all sorts of material.

Good luck. I hope you are back at the bench soon. Take care of your hands. If your injury was piano related, you will have to be careful. I suffer from chronic repetitive stress issues from years on whistle, flute and computer. I wear gloves while playing and using the computer. I ice my hands, and soak them in warm water. I limit my practice time to about an hour a day. By doing all this, I am able to manage the discomfort, though occasional flare ups still occur.
_________________________
my piano uploads

Top
#2098694 - 06/08/13 05:20 PM Re: Ways to learn away from the piano [Re: Pierre-Luc]
Bobpickle Offline

Gold Supporter until July 10  2014


Registered: 05/24/12
Posts: 1383
Loc: Cameron Park, California
Here's a link to an old thread I'd made where you can explore various links on music theory: http://www.pianoworld.com/forum/ubbthreads.php/topics/1948785.html#Post1948785

It might be fun to try and learn how to break-down and analyze simple pieces and then find some that you like and practice the skill


Edited by Bobpickle (06/08/13 05:20 PM)

Top
#2099061 - 06/09/13 12:10 AM Re: Ways to learn away from the piano [Re: Pierre-Luc]
earlofmar Offline
1000 Post Club Member

Registered: 03/21/13
Posts: 1656
Loc: Australia
Thanks for the link Sand Tiger, I have seen you post if before but this time I think I am ready to invest some time into the subject. Any excuse to say I go to Yale.
_________________________
I thought I understood endurance sport; then I took up piano
XXXV-6-XXX

Top
#2099083 - 06/09/13 01:19 AM Re: Ways to learn away from the piano [Re: Pierre-Luc]
carolyn227 Offline
Full Member

Registered: 03/17/07
Posts: 107
Listening is a great skill to have. Sometimes I listen to the pieces I'm working on and read along. I make notes sometimes too and really concentrate on the way it's supposed to sound. I like watching YouTube videos of the pieces and watching the way the performer's hands move. Another thing you could do is learn about important composers and get familiar with their music, or learn musical terms. There are several music-related courses on memrise.com that are fun and don't take up a lot of time, including courses on theory and composers.

You can do ear training to hear specific intervals. In my college class on this subject (for my brief stint as a piano major) the professor taught us tricks with songs to help us hear the intervals- familiar folk songs mostly- I think "My Bonnie Lies Over the Ocean" was for 6ths, but that's the only one I can recall at all. We did a lot of do re mi-ing in that class, too.
_________________________
Pianist and mom to three awesome kids (and budding musicians).

Top
#2099106 - 06/09/13 03:08 AM Re: Ways to learn away from the piano [Re: Pierre-Luc]
Bobpickle Offline

Gold Supporter until July 10  2014


Registered: 05/24/12
Posts: 1383
Loc: Cameron Park, California
Originally Posted By: Pierre-Luc
Would you be able to recommend any aspect of piano that can be practiced away from it while my hands recover?


Also, I didn't think to recommend it before, but why not use this time to try and brush up on where you went wrong the first time so you can avoid making the same mistakes (or new ones) and injuring yourself again for a second time? There are a great number of resources on piano technique, free or otherwise that occasionally get discussed on these forums.

Some books and one dvd/video that I know have good reviews that come to mind:

DVD/video:
-Barbara Lister-Sink: Freeing The Caged Bird
Books:
-Thomas Mark: What Every Pianist Needs To Know About The Body
-Alan Fraser: The Craft of Piano Playing
-Gyorgy Sandor: On Piano Playing: Motion, Sound, and Expression
-Aiko Onishi: Pianism


Of course, lessons with a highly experienced teacher (especially one in pianist injury prevention and/or recovery) as soon as you're able to start playing again (or maybe even a little before so that you could get settled).

Top
#2100668 - 06/10/13 10:42 PM Re: Ways to learn away from the piano [Re: Bobpickle]
Pierre-Luc Offline
Full Member

Registered: 11/21/12
Posts: 33
Loc: Montreal
First of all, thanks to everyone who posted a reply. This is very helpful!

For those wondering, I did injure myself playing too much piano but I think it might be primarily related to having to use a computer for eight hours a day even if my symptoms did not appear until I started playing piano... Basically, after three months of practicing my new hobby for two hours a day, my hands started to hurt from everywhere (fingers, wrist, forearm and even from the elbow). It never really recovered and it now gets exponentially worst as soon as I play a small 10 minutes of piano so I had no choice but to stop practicing completely for now.

As Bobpickle recommended, I did read a lot on hands injury and how to avoid them. Thomas Mark's book has definitely helped but I feel like my posture and hands positioning at the piano has never been the problem in the first place.

I've seen a doctors who thought it was a tendinitis and the physiotherapist just made it worst. I've now been waiting to see a physiatrist but there are no private clinics of physiatrist in Quebec and I have to wait for a year before I get an appointment in a public clinic. :-\

I will definitely check out all the links you guys posted. I'm the most interested in material that will help me progress at a faster rate when I get back to playing while making sure not to forget about good practices in regards to posture and hands positioning.

Thanks again guys!

Pierre-Luc
_________________________
Yamaha YDP-181
Alfred's All-in-One Level 2

Top
#2100765 - 06/11/13 03:03 AM Re: Ways to learn away from the piano [Re: Pierre-Luc]
Bobpickle Offline

Gold Supporter until July 10  2014


Registered: 05/24/12
Posts: 1383
Loc: Cameron Park, California
I think I just read Michael_99 say that his work often involves him typing for 8 hours a day. You might see if he has advice.

Top
#2100797 - 06/11/13 05:00 AM Re: Ways to learn away from the piano [Re: Pierre-Luc]
Michael_99 Offline
500 Post Club Member

Registered: 07/28/12
Posts: 935
Loc: Canada Alberta
Pierre-Luc, I have read your post, here:

I've been away from the piano for at least 6 months now due to an injury to both hands. I have played for 3 full months before that and was really enjoying it.

Would you be able to recommend any aspect of piano that can be practiced away from it while my hands recover?

As an example, I know there are softwares that you can use to practice sight reading but I'm wondering if my time could be better spent practicing and learning something else.

Thanks in advance for any recommendation you may have for me.

Pierre-Luc

____________________________________________________

I am 63. I have played the piano for 2 years. Over my lifetime I tried to play the piano about 4 times or about every 10 years. I taught myself to type when I was 13. And I worked as a typist since I was 21, 8 hours a day until I had health issues that required me to go on a disability and had nothing to do with my hands.

The reason I failed trying to play the piano was that I would type for 8 hours plus overtime at the office and trying to sit at the piano to play and practice the piano for another 2 or 3 hours was impossible - I couldn't do it and so I failed, and I failed and I failed.

Now I know lots of people who played the piano and typed, but the key is learning something is always difficult and requires extreme energy, but being able to do something you can do well is much easier.

Knowing what I know now has taught me how I could have play the piano before. You see, I could have typed for 8 hours and then gone for a walk, etc. and then played the piano as a beginner by reading the music making sure I know the names of all the notes in the piece and going through the music again counting though the measures and making sure there is no counting issues. So then as now all I have to do is just sit down at the piano and slowly, very slowly read and play the music without errors - and if I can't play it without errors, I walk away from the piano until I can study the music why I can't play the piece. So I am not spending the whole night at the piano looking at the music confused, etc. But that is what I learned in the last 2 years as an old man. As young guy in my 20s it is all about doing everything NOW - FAST - and using your brain less!

The key to avoiding hand, elbow issues is relaxing when you type. Just this morning I realized I could have an issue if I wasn't careful because when I am making a salad,, I use scissors to chop/cut the lettuce and I was using the scissors fast and intensely - not good - so I slowed down and used the scissors slowly and in a relaxed fashion. It wasn't as much fun but it is much better for the hands.

Speed at any anything is regulated or controlled by the brain. So when you try to type or play the piano, you try to force your fingers to do things quickly even though it is the brain that controls the speed so all that happens is that you tense your hands and fingers which if you tense any part of your body, it gets tired more easily or it is uncomfortable. So it is important to have good hand position in typing or playing the piano/keyboard such that in a real world you could balance coins on the backs of your hands and they would stay there.

So if you had a big job to type taking many hours there is an inclination to try to type it fast - but over time your hands could begin to hurt. What you have to do is to type with relaxed hands and if you do that you can probably type for a long time maybe having tired hands but not pain or discomfort.

Speed, as I said is done with the brain and not the hands so speed in typing or playing the piano takes a long time to increase the speed but you must do the playing and typing slowly it - and it will happen that you will increase your facility but you must do it in a relaxed manner.

When I play the piano, I ignore speed and dynamics like fff - because pounding the piano keys is not good for your hands and fingers. As a beginner there is not need to play fff because nobody is paying me big bucks to do it. If and when the need comes, I will do it but not now.

So when I play the piano I read and play the music very, very, slowly, relaxed and then over many days, weeks, months, my ability to play the piece is - comfortable and relaxed - increases in speed - but not at the expense of my hands.

I know a guy my age that has run 2 to 4 hours a day as a form of exercise since he was in college and like everybody who does regular activities there are risks of pain or injury. I know that he is particular about how he runs and shoes and knows what to do and what not to do. So the point is that you have to know how to protect your body when doing activities.

Because you have issues I would take time to heal the issues - so be very kind to your hands and fingers, play slowly, relaxed, do 10 minutes at a time -100 times in 24 hours hours if necessary. Stop if you are in discomfort. It could take at least a half a year but with great care and kindness to your hands hopefully things will be okay. I play pp or softly all the time be it the acoustic or the digital, it is just me and the piano so there is no reason to play other than in a intimate way. Good luck.


Edited by Michael_99 (06/11/13 05:11 AM)

Top
#2100863 - 06/11/13 10:23 AM Re: Ways to learn away from the piano [Re: Pierre-Luc]
Palmpirate Offline
Full Member

Registered: 01/31/13
Posts: 226
Loc: B.C.Canada
Pierre-luc, I was so sad to hear of your predicament. Waiting for treatment is so hard. I can relate to your frustrations. Today I am heading out to the Dr after shoulder x-rays. I fear it will be about my arms and fingers. But it is something that was there before I returned to piano playing and I shall be really upset if I am told to 'cool it' with my practising. Now that I return to my real passion which is the piano 1 1/2 to 2 hrs practise a day might be taking its toll even though I've never experienced discomfort from being at the piano before - ever! Maybe it's just age and the old body refusing to keep up with the brain and I may have to be less ambitious with my choice of music to play. Not that some of those concertos were really within my reach!
So I too am excited to read about the information here about things to do away from the piano. Sand Tiger, that Yale course had a $330 fee to audit - was there another link for a free one? Sounds really interesting. Love to do something like that just for fun anyway.
Good luck with your therapy Pierre-Luc.


Edited by Palmpirate (06/11/13 10:29 AM)
_________________________

Top
#2100903 - 06/11/13 12:25 PM Re: Ways to learn away from the piano [Re: Pierre-Luc]
chrisbeech Offline
Junior Member

Registered: 05/30/13
Posts: 3
Hi all,

I was looking at the Yale course last night as it sounded interesting.

You can watch videos of the lessons for free here:

http://oyc.yale.edu/music/musi-112#sessions

Top

Moderator:  BB Player, casinitaly 
What's Hot!!
HOW TO POST PICTURES on the Piano Forums
-------------------
Sharing is Caring!
About the Buttons
-------------------
Forums Rules & Help
-------------------
ADVERTISE
on Piano World

The world's most popular piano web site.
-------------------
PIANO BOOKS
Interesting books about the piano, pianists, piano history, biographies, memoirs and more!
(125ad) Dampp Chaser
Dampp Chaser Piano Life Saver
Ad (Seiler/Knabe)
Knabe Pianos
Sheet Music
(PW is an affiliate)
Sheet Music Plus Featured Sale
(ad) HAILUN Pianos
Hailun Pianos - Click for More
(ad) Lindeblad Piano
Lindeblad Piano Restoration
New Topics - Multiple Forums
Piano Lock Key -> what is it used for ?
by angga888
1 minute 31 seconds ago
Yurmauer Piano
by PhilipInChina
Yesterday at 11:54 PM
Books to Learn Notes for Teenagers?
by pianoheart
Yesterday at 11:37 PM
Jim Laabs Music - my experience buying a grand sight-unseen
by ernani
Yesterday at 09:44 PM
Buying a Grand Paino Sight-Unseen - my personal experience.
by ernani
Yesterday at 09:01 PM
Who's Online
109 registered (angga888, A-Tom, 36251, 30 invisible), 1946 Guests and 11 Spiders online.
Key: Admin, Global Mod, Mod
Forum Stats
76712 Members
42 Forums
158627 Topics
2329742 Posts

Max Online: 15252 @ 03/21/10 11:39 PM
(ads by Google)

Visit our online store for gifts for music lovers

 
Help keep the forums up and running with a donation, any amount is appreciated!
Or by becoming a Subscribing member! Thank-you.
Donate   Subscribe
 
Our Piano Related Classified Ads
|
Dealers | Tuners | Lessons | Movers | Restorations | Pianos For Sale | Sell Your Piano |

Advertise on Piano World
| Subscribe | Piano World | PianoSupplies.com | Advertise on Piano World | Donate | Link to Us | Classifieds |
| |Contact | Privacy | Legal | About Us | Site Map | Free Newsletter | Press Room |


copyright 1997 - 2014 Piano World ® all rights reserved
No part of this site may be reproduced without prior written permission