At the Piano Shop Bath we often get enquiries from parents who are keen to enable their children to start learning the piano. Most people are aware of the benefits that learning the piano can bring to children. We have all heard the studies that demonstrate how playing the piano can help with confidence, memory, coordination and self motivation. Unfortunately, provision for musical education in schools has been squeezed so much that in some cases it may as well now be non existent. This means it is now largely down to parents to facilitate their children’s musical journey. At The Piano Shop Bath the two questions we hear most often are ‘what age can my child start learning the piano?’ and ‘what sort of piano is best for a beginner to learn on?’
There are a number of options to choose from; a classic upright piano, a grand piano or a digital piano, any of which will work for a beginner. If you are going to go down the digital piano route just make sure the keys are weighted so the action is as authentic as possible. The Kawai ES100 digital piano with weighted keyboard is a great value entry level digital piano and currently available on our website for £499. Many people find that an entry level digital piano is a good starting point for children who want to start learning the piano. If space and budget is less of a consideration then the best thing to do is to buy the best upright piano or grand piano possible. This may sound obvious but it can be extremely demoralising for a young pianist starting out on the piano to practice on a clunky old piano, with a heavy action and inconsistent tuning. We have a really good range of entry level upright pianos at the Piano Shop Bath so if you are thinking of going down the upright piano route then finding the right piano for you and your family should be easy. This Welmar Regency upright piano is a relatively new addition to our large piano showroom and would make a great starter piano for someone. All our pianos include free delivery and free first tuning to help it get settled properly into its new home.
Learning the piano is a logical starting point for young musicians as it is a great solo instrument. Piano playing has also been shown to improve co-ordination skills and general neurological development. The piano can be started from the age of four but most teachers would normally recommend waiting until reading skills, attention span and hand size have developed. This would vary for each individual but around the age of six can be a good time to start learning the piano. Research has shown that musicians who possess absolute pitch generally begin their instrumental studies before the age of seven. This indicates that the ability is retained at a point when the brain is still fairly flexible. That certainly doesn’t mean there is no point in learning the piano after a certain age, different times will work for different families and a good teacher will recognise that, as long as there is the opportunity for regular practice children will benefit from starting the piano at any age.