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Sometimes I feel like giving up piano once and for all


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#16 elemimele

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Posted 31 January 2018 - 14:06

I'm not sure there is a magic length of time; I think mochtegernvrtuoso's idea is that it is better to set out to do a little practice regularly, than aim for a 3-hour scales marathon and become frustrated. Everyone needs to define their own version of "little".

 

Raspberry, I get your point that you want to have serious goals, and therefore like exams. However, I'm not sure that exams alone are giving you what you need. If they were, you wouldn't be considering giving up. There are a million different equally-serious goals you could set yourself(*). For example, if there is a piece you love and would like to play, then it could be a goal. Maybe that's something to discuss with your teacher? In a way, musical goals such as much-loved pieces, or the exploration of the repertoire of a composer you admire, are longer-lasting than exams, because eventually you will run out of exams to take. And anyway, I get the impression the three motivating factors that allow someone to pursue music beyond the end of their exam career are various personally-determined combinations of the satisfaction of teaching, the satisfaction of performing music that one loves, and cash! So it's no bad thing to think about the music you love, and what you want to do about it.

 

(* goals aren't exclusive. You can, of course, do exams as well as having other goals such as learning a great piece. And there are so many other goals too: to be able to accompany a friend, to be able to play nursery rhymes for a grand-daughter, to have the confidence to play your last exam piece on one of those public pianos in a shopping arcade/station (that takes serious bravery!)... and probably more).

 

(edit: embarrassing correction of there>their)


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#17 Solari

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Posted 31 January 2018 - 16:48

When I first started I was doing 2-3 hours a day and made rapid progress.

 

I can't hack more than an hour now, I think my attention span has divorced me. :P


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#18 Thepianist

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Posted 01 February 2018 - 03:22

Don't give up, all the grades are difficult. The jump after each grade is crazy too but it all cements the foundations in your head. I used to practice 40-50 hours a week but have just recently met a lovely and amazing lady. So I'm guessing my practice time will be cut down majorly over the next few months lol. But life is for living you have just got to get a balance and just enjoy playing.
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#19 EllieD

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Posted 01 February 2018 - 08:02

 

 

(* goals aren't exclusive. ... And there are so many other goals too: to be able to accompany a friend, to be able to play nursery rhymes for a grand-daughter, to have the confidence to play your last exam piece on one of those public pianos in a shopping arcade/station (that takes serious bravery!)... and probably more).

 

 

 

My goal - just enjoy it! I've waited nearly 50 years to do what I love most, and I'm just going to enjoy every second that I get to play the piano. If I can accompany my nieces / sister or if someone else can enjoy listening to what I do, that's a definite plus of course!

 

Thepianist - that's a happy piece of news!! smile.png 


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#20 Thepianist

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Posted 02 February 2018 - 00:38

Thanks Ellie :) need a bit more balance in my life instead of work an practice all the time. I really hope this works out if it doesn't I'm finished with women altogether lol.
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#21 michael N

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Posted 05 February 2018 - 14:21

I started piano from scratch just over 1 year ago. I played for just over 3 months before I started experiencing pain in my right hand. I guess I was about grade 1 and a little bit! I quit for 5 months because the hand pain was persistent but I so wanted to carry on. When I went back to it I'd virtually forgotten everything! it was as though I'd never touched a piano ever. It took me another 3 months to get back to where I was!

Given that you are passed grade 2 it would be a shame to stop. Even if you did just two 20 minute practice sessions per week it might be enough to maintain what you have then when you feel more motivated you haven't lost anything.


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#22 Clarimoo

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Posted 05 February 2018 - 22:45

Even if you stop having lessons you can still enjoy playing the piano.

In the future you may find the time and motivation to take lessons again.


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#23 adultpianist

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Posted 05 February 2018 - 23:38

I started piano from scratch just over 1 year ago. I played for just over 3 months before I started experiencing pain in my right hand. I guess I was about grade 1 and a little bit! I quit for 5 months because the hand pain was persistent but I so wanted to carry on. When I went back to it I'd virtually forgotten everything! it was as though I'd never touched a piano ever. It took me another 3 months to get back to where I was!

Given that you are passed grade 2 it would be a shame to stop. Even if you did just two 20 minute practice sessions per week it might be enough to maintain what you have then when you feel more motivated you haven't lost anything.

 

 

Did you go to the doctor to discover why you had hand pain?   Not every pianist has hand pain.  I have never experienced hand pain and I practice a lot.   I practice between 30 minutes to an hour per day.    I can easily get carried away so I limit myself as its not got for the brain or the body especially after a day at work


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#24 Witzend

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Posted 06 February 2018 - 09:17

I have sometimes felt very discouraged the past year or two, because of so much time unavoidably spent away from home and piano, and then feeling that I had lost whatever little progress I'd been making. I also more or less had to give up my (group) lessons since I was missing so many anyway. Not that my group teacher was ever particularly encouraging, but it did give me the incentive to practise.

When I've felt like this I have often made myself sit down and do SOMETHING even for 10 minutes, e.g. while potatoes were boiling. And have often found myself getting absorbed again.
The other thing when I've been feeling discouraged, is going back to some much easier pieces - only the ones I really liked - instead of slogging away at the current one(s) which can make me feel I'm getting nowhere fast.
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#25 michael N

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Posted 06 February 2018 - 10:47

 

I started piano from scratch just over 1 year ago. I played for just over 3 months before I started experiencing pain in my right hand. I guess I was about grade 1 and a little bit! I quit for 5 months because the hand pain was persistent but I so wanted to carry on. When I went back to it I'd virtually forgotten everything! it was as though I'd never touched a piano ever. It took me another 3 months to get back to where I was!

Given that you are passed grade 2 it would be a shame to stop. Even if you did just two 20 minute practice sessions per week it might be enough to maintain what you have then when you feel more motivated you haven't lost anything.

 

 

Did you go to the doctor to discover why you had hand pain?   Not every pianist has hand pain.  I have never experienced hand pain and I practice a lot.   I practice between 30 minutes to an hour per day.    I can easily get carried away so I limit myself as its not got for the brain or the body especially after a day at work

 

 

I did not but I had a very good idea what the cause was - going by past experience playing guitar. My left shoulder is terribly out of position, just years of bad posture and playing guitar. The only way is rest (for myself) - no more pain. I'm using a theraband to exercise and consciously trying to keep that shoulder back and 'open' when playing the piano. I haven't had a recurrence of the hand pain and things feel much better in general. I can still feel a bit of tension in the shoulders which I'm trying to eliminate. It takes time, can't undo years of bad posture overnight.


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#26 ejw21

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Posted 06 February 2018 - 12:13

Hi michael N, have you considered going to an osteopath? I am seeing one at the moment for stress-related shoulder problems and after a good few months of work my shoulders are finally starting to feel better. It is taking a lot of time because I left it 6 months after .Symptoms started before trying an osteopath so there is more to have to undo. IMO definitely worth it.


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#27 michael N

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Posted 06 February 2018 - 18:12

Hmm. I've thought about it, perhaps not seriously. You're the third person who has mentioned an osteopath/chiropractor in relation to this. Maybe I should try it just to see how things turn out.


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#28 Paola

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Posted 04 March 2018 - 21:02

Raspberry

 

I sympathise that it's difficult to find time to practice at times; but if you do a little bit each day on your pieces, or on your scales, you can only go one way and that is UP!    Another way is to look at the pieces away from the piano to work out the structure, the rhythm, dynamics, etc.   You could look at the structure of scales and learn the key signatures too.   It's surprising how much you can learn away from the piano!

 

If you give up you cannot progress.

 

 


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#29 piano4solihull

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Posted 13 March 2018 - 11:52

I agree about setting very small challenges, 5 minutes a day and then switch to something else. Maybe scales/arps for 5 minutes, sight reading for 5 minutes and 5 minutes on a small section of some exciting music and then walk away :) You will come back to it if it is meant to be.

I stopped for 11 years after uni due to a very bad teacher. I loved it a lot more because I was motivated. I then started teaching and 10 years later..


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#30 Saxwarbler

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Posted 13 March 2018 - 18:14

I was without a teacher from December to February and even though I had begun some grade 3 work, I was lacking focus and motivation and in the end was just noodling around playing all sorts of stuff - everything from first level tutor book pieces to stuff that was clearly way too hard - just so that I could tell myself I was 'practising'. It didn't feel very constructive at the time but I think it's actually been good for me. First time out with my new teacher those difficult scales didn't seem quite so difficult, and because I've already had a blast at a few of the pieces in the syllabus it's been easier to narrow down the choice for the exam and get down to some serious, focused work done on them.

Whilst I was very happy with my previous teacher, I was aware that I was never going to find anyone who teaches just like her. All teachers teach differently and I guess when we switch there has to be some adjustment on both sides. I'm happy to say that my new teacher and I seem to have gelled fairly quickly (even though the two are polar opposites - my new one is much stricter), partly because I had forgotten enough during the 'down' period to enable me to adapt and restart without holding on to too much baggage.


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