If you're new to the world of piano playing and are looking up beginner piano exercises, this is a great start! You understand there are things to learn and practice. But what do you need to practice?
Here we'll go into a series of beginner piano exercises designed to get you playing without feeling overwhelmed, further develop your understanding of music, build strong foundations and to get those fingers moving and coordinating.
Let's get started!
One of the first things you'll need to master is finger control. Evenness in touch and sound comes from the strength and independence of your fingers.
Start with simple five-finger scales, which involve playing five notes in a row, using all five fingers.
Begin with the C Major scale (C-D-E-F-G), starting with your thumb (1st finger) on C and traveling one finger at a time up to your little finger (5th finger) on G in your right hand. Then, reverse the order to come back down.
Repeat this exercise, slowly at first, then gradually increase your speed as your comfort and coordination improve. You want everything to sound even and don't rush one note and not the other.
Next, do this with your left hand. This time your pinkie (finger 5) will be on C and you'll travel up to G played with your thumb (finger 1).
Understanding rhythm is crucial for any musician. Rhythm exercises will help you learn to keep time and ensure your music flows smoothly.
Begin with practicing quarter, half, and whole notes in simple 4/4 time. You can do this on any note or series of notes. A quarter note gets one beat, a half note gets two, and a whole note gets four. Use a metronome to ensure you're keeping time accurately.
Work on keeping time and hitting the beats on the tick.
These pages will help you with this:
Rhythm Symbols (choose any rhythm symbol you like and practice counting)
Time Signatures (explains time signatures and how to count)
Playing the piano isn't just about your fingers. It's also about coordinating both hands together, which can be one of the most challenging skills for beginners to develop.
We can use the C Major chord for this. The C chord has the notes C E G. Here are some exercises you can do with this:
Aim for smooth, even playing.
Melody and harmony are the heart of most pieces of music. Once you have a grasp on finger strength, rhythm, and coordination, you can start to practice or continue playing simple songs.
The best way to do this is to play the beginner songs in beginner piano books. They progress you through songs that won't be too challenging while teaching you concepts and fingering.
These songs will help you apply the skills you've been developing and give you a sense of accomplishment.
You can see the books I recommend for beginners here.
Learn to play the basic chords (major and minor) in root position. Start with simple triads (three-note chords) like C major (C-E-G) or A minor (A-C-E). The G (G-B-D) chord and F (F-A-C) chord are also great to learn.
Once you learn these chords on their own, start playing them in chord progressions.
Here are some beginner piano exercises using chord progressions:
C, G, C, G
C, F, C, F
C, F, G, C
C, F, Am, G
If you need more information on chords, this can help:
Consistency and practice are crucial when learning to play the piano. These beginner piano exercises will help you establish a strong foundation to build upon as you advance. Remember to take your time, be patient with yourself, and, most importantly, enjoy the process of making music.
Next step: learn your major scales.
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