The Benefits of Playing an Instrument


Siyona’s guitar and violin—two instruments in the string family.

Whether you choose strings, percussion, keyboard, brass or woodwind- playing an instrument has a large positive impact on your life.

Learning to read notes and play the instrument keeps all parts of your brain active, increases concentration span, and also helps develop a greater appreciation and understanding for music. 

Improves concentration

A great deal of patience comes with playing any instrument. Learning how to read music, play with the correct dynamics, or hold the bow properly all help to improve your concentration in other aspects of your life. 

“Playing music by yourself requires you to concentrate on things like pitch, rhythm, tempo, note duration, and quality of sound. Playing music in a group involves even more concentration because you must learn to not only hear yourself, but you must listen to all the other sections,” Stamford Schools stated.

Keeps your brain active

The human brain has multiple parts, a lot of which are used when playing an instrument, keeping your brain active. “It engages every major part of the central nervous system,” said John Dani, PhD, chair of Neuroscience at Penn’s Perelman School of Medicine. “Recent studies suggest that music may be a uniquely good form of exercising your brain,” he said. “Fun can also be good for you.”

As a violinist, I can say that when you play the violin for example, you are required to have your right hand do something completely contrasting to the left. Musicians need to focus and keep their eyes moving forward in the music; this helps you to prepare in advance, using the brain’s executive function. 

The nervous system sends signals in our brains which give us the ability to move, and relates to finger movement- a major part of learning any instrument.

Greater understanding and appreciation for music

Have you ever judged a song before you fully listened to it? Those who play an instrument see things through a different perspective. According to Aristotle in his Politics Book 8, “unless you have taken part in music education, or in learning an instrument, you have no real basis for assessing the quality of a piece of music.” 

Aristotle wrote that you should not set your mind to only the fact that playing a difficult instrument will take effort, but instead learn it so that you can enjoy playing it in your free time.


The many benefits of playing a musical instrument range from better concentration, keeping your brain in good shape, developing a larger appreciation for music, or even the experience of playing for fun! 

With such a vast variety of instruments to select from, there’s bound to be an instrument for everyone interested; so why not try something new?