Piano playing requires mastering a number of highly refined skills that do not reflect a child’s natural way of moving. Establishing and maintaining the playing posture demand quite sophisticated control. The combination of manual gross and manual fine motor skills requires accurate coordination.


Solid balance forms the basis of relaxed motor activity. Equilibrium is always challenged when the head or body changes position or the hands are moving on the keyboard. To achieve fluency in playing, it is essential to learn to anticipate situations affecting the maintenance of a stable posture. Every performed movement alters the balance and the player has to respond to be able to continue playing. Experience has proved that posture control is a very significant contributory element in piano playing.


The player’s entire motor activity is controlled by the perceptual motor skills: body awareness and spatial perception including the awareness of orientation and time. Training these perceptual skills can be included as a natural element of piano studies. Reflecting on small questions such as did you play with a heavy or a light touch, slowly or quickly, and what kind of tone did you produce, help pupils to observe their own bodies at the instrument.


There are various ways of enhancing perceptual motor skills: see www.junttu.net/pianojumppaa  for a selection of exercises that promote piano playing. These exercises are suitable for training balance, posture maintenance, fine and gross motor skills, and coordination. They also serve as a tonic during practice, as well as improving body awareness and concentration.



Does this subject interest you?

Read more (research results with source references). Junttu 2010 pp. 141-144

(http://www.junttu.net/ / /raportti.html)

 

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