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What Are The Benefits Of Playing The Violin? You Might Be Surprised!

Benefits of playing the violin

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Knowing how to play a musical instrument with confidence is a fulfilling and enjoyable ability. But, if someone were to ask you, “If you could pick from any instrument and instantly know how to play it, what would you pick?” odds are that a violin would be among the top choice. But although violins are surrounded by a romantic aura of mystique, many people think that it’s too hard, too expensive, or just plain too difficult to learn how to play this well-known and much beloved musical instrument.    

However, you may be surprised to discover that there are many excellent, lifelong benefits of playing the violin; and learning to play it, like any undertaking, simply requires having the right tools and the right instruction.

Looking for a more visual representation of the benefits of playing the violin? Take a look at our infographic.

Benefits of Playing the Violin for Children

Young children often become fascinated with learning to play the violin, and if so, they should be encouraged. The physical, mental, and social benefits of playing a musical instrument are well-known, but the violin offers some rather surprising additions.

Improved Memory and Attention Span

Many studies have been conducted on the benefits of playing the violin or some other musical instrument. A recent study by the McMaster University’s Institute for Music and the Mind found that musical training, even one year’s worth, positively impacts the memory and attention span.

Better Overall Mental Function and Health

Experts agree that musical training improves: reading skills, language processing, speech, and a variety of brain functions. In December 2014, the Journal of American Academy of Child and Adolescent Psychiatry released Dr. James Hudziak’s findings on enhanced brain development, and how playing a violin can help children battle psychological disorders.

Sensory Development

Long-term high level musical training has a broader impact than previously thought. Researchers found that musicians have an enhanced ability to integrate sensory information from hearing, touch, and sight (Julie Roy, abstract 550.13, see attached summary).[1]

Social Skills

The benefits of playing the violin are also social. Not only does it provide a conversational point, but young children gain self-discipline from repeated practice. There is also amazing benefits from having something in their lives that they can control. Learning to play violin can build self-reliance, self-esteem, and self-awareness - qualities which make them well-liked and well-adjusted.

Benefits of Playing the Violin for Teens

Even if you don’t start early, anyone can learn to play the violin, no matter his or her age. In fact, many teens look to broaden their skills and enhance their college applications with a variety of extra-curricular activities.

A Sense of Belonging

Many adolescents benefit from learning the violin because of the social belonging it provides. Playing in an orchestra requires group coordination, attention, and uniform dress, which can be a vast relief from the constant pressures and angst of being a teenager.

An Emotional Outlet

Playing the violin offers the opportunity to release your feelings, something that teens can sometimes find very difficult to do in a constructive manner.

Physical Benefits

Concerts and contests provide opportunities for achievement and the physical benefits of playing the violin are the same as for younger children. Better posture, stronger upper body strength, and improved motor skills are engendered through practice. The physical exertion is lessened through proper body placement.

More College Choice

Proficiency in music education and appreciation, like violin, can often provide that extra something that college Admissions boards look for. 

Learn about more ways playing the violin can be beneficial for children here

For Adults

In addition to all of the mental and physical benefits of playing the violin, adults who decide to learn the violin gain added advantages.

Reduced Stress

Lower levels of depression, anxiety, and other stress related health problems. Playing the violin is an excellent stress reliever and a great way to enlarge your social circle.

Improved Posture

Today's sedentary lifestyle leaves many adults with unhealthy spines and terrible, pain-inducing posture. Playing the violin calls for exemplary posture. Learning how to stand properly while playing can translate to improved posture all the time.

The mental, emotional, and physical benefits of playing the violin are definitely worth the time and effort it takes to learn this instrument. And with the right equipment, you can start experiencing those benefits even faster.

anatomy of a violin

[1] Society for Neuroscience. "Musical training shapes brain anatomy, affects function." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 12 November 2013. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2013/11/131112163216.htm>.