Nowadays, people are trying all sorts of techniques to keep healthy. From traditional exercise to mindfulness, yoga, and dancing, there are all sorts of ways to nurture your mental and physical health.
One of the most exciting options for creatives, particularly musicians, is playing music. Read on to learn the health benefits that playing an instrument offers. You might turn off your phone and plug in your amp instead. Rock on!
What Is the Best Instrument to Choose when looking for Health Benefits?
According to scientific research, playing a musical instrument can have positive benefits for your health and mental well-being. What’s more, these benefits can occur at any age and from playing any instrument.
Your choice of instrument depends on what you’re looking for and your circumstances. If stress relief is your goal, you need an instrument that is quiet and contemplative and won’t wind you up as you learn to play.
It has to be the drums if you are looking for an adrenalin rush and plenty of physical activity. A basic drum kit outfitted with the best hi-hat cymbals, like these from drumcenternh.com, makes for a pleasing sound and cathartic experience.
The fact that the drums truly cover all five of our benefits makes them the ultimate instrument to improve your overall health. And for that reason, we have chosen the drumset to be our number one choice for an instrument with the most overall health benefits.
5 Ways Playing a Musical Instrument Can Improve your Health
1. Stress Relief
Whether you’re a professional musician or just enjoy making music with friends, playing an instrument can have many physical and mental benefits. Using a musical instrument is a great way to exercise your brain, build self-esteem, and develop a positive social network.
Reducing stress levels leads to a lower heart rate and blood pressure, but many people struggle with stress management.
A hobby, such as playing an instrument, can help relieve stress, build confidence and improve memory functions.
Music has been proven to be effective at reducing stress and depression, increasing memory, and improving the immune system. It has also been shown to be a great way to reduce blood pressure.
Playing an instrument can also give you a sense of achievement. It is a good way to unwind after a long day. Playing music is a fun way to connect with others. Performing in an orchestra or with friends can also provide similar benefits. With the added joy of socializing.
Playing an instrument also releases serotonin, endorphins, and dopamine. These chemicals are responsible for making you happy and are the brain’s natural stress reducers. These chemicals can help alleviate insomnia, fatigue, and other common stress-related symptoms.
Another benefit of playing an instrument is that it stretches the mind. Studies have shown that playing music improves memory and problem-solving skills. It also helps with concentration while increasing the connectivity between different parts of the brain.
2. Improves Breathing and the Respiratory System
When playing a wind instrument, it is essential to breathe correctly and regulate your breathing to produce a good sound.
Well-controlled and regular breathing is good for both the mind and body. Most woodwind teachers will include breathing exercises as part of their tuition protocols. These benefits can be related to yoga breathing exercises, which come with the added benefit of mindfulness and a feeling of calmness.
If the saxophone or clarinet is not for you, then you replicate this effect with singing. Also, you don’t have to be playing a wind instrument to see the benefits of this effect. Playing the drums, for example, will easily get your heart going and will speed up your breathing, which in turn will train your lungs and heart, leading to the strengthening of both.
It’s easy to see why playing the drums is an excellent form of physical exercise. The instrument requires moving all your limbs.
The benefits of playing an instrument include the physical effects of muscle strengthening and coordination. Playing an instrument can also help improve posture and stamina. Aside from improving your overall health, playing an instrument can also help you stay calm and relieve stress.
Playing an instrument has many benefits, but the benefits vary depending on the instrument you play. You might want to consider learning a guitar, a tin whistle, or drums. Learning a new instrument takes time, but the rewards are well worth the effort.
Researchers have long recommended exercise as an antidote to depression, and as we’ve been saying, exercise can come from playing a musical instrument.
4. Improves Cognitive Function
One of the greatest physical benefits of playing an instrument is improving memory. Studies show that playing an instrument can help improve memory in Alzheimer’s patients. Music activates parts of the brain that are less affected by Alzheimer’s.
The prefrontal cortex, a part of the brain that helps with focus, is also boosted by playing an instrument. This part of the brain also helps with problem-solving. Learning an instrument can increase the brain’s executive functions, allowing you to make better decisions and process information faster.
When playing drums, you are also having to work on your rhythm and exercise your brain’s ability to control your hands independently of each other, all while staying on beat, this can take some significant practice and in a way – thinking. All of this of course leads to improved cognitive function.
5. Enhanced Immune System
Did you know that singing for an hour every week can reduce stress? It turns out those singing performances in the shower aren’t a waste.
Singing can also increase immune protein levels, effectively helping ward off disease and keep you healthy.
Music also enhances the immunological response, enabling the human body to fight viruses and remain healthier.
Playing a musical instrument will really benefit your health and that’s before you consider the social aspects of getting involved in an orchestra, band, or group. Plus, you don’t need to learn to read music—even a basic experience can positively impact the mind and body! So why don’t you dust off the old recorder or break out the dusty drumset from the garage and get those creative juices moving?