How Much Time Do I Need to Practice with My Instrument?

How Much Time Do I Need to Practice with My Instrument?

We all know that spending time with an instrument is the only way to improve your abilities. How long you should practice daily often depends on what you hope to accomplish.

It can be challenging to know how much time is necessary to practice. We often think about our long-term goals instead of looking at the steps needed to get there. It is not unusual for people to believe that they’ll become experts after a year or two without putting in the daily practicing commitments.

Here are some of the most common structures that musicians use if you’re exploring the idea of practice. Could any of them feel like the right fit for your needs?

How Much Time Should I Practice Daily?

Your goal should be to practice “the right way” each day instead of blindly picking up your instrument to play through notes. If you can only practice for ten minutes on your technique, it’s still better than 45 minutes doing something detrimental to your development!

Practicing for Up to 2 Hours Per Week

If you spend this much time with your instrument, it’s unlikely that you’re playing it every day. You might be working for an hour during band class or taking four 30-minute sessions. You’ll find it challenging to make progress at this level because there isn’t much time to work. If you spend a year following this routine, it might make you feel like a failure as a musician.

Practicing for Up to 4 Hours Per Week

When you want to improve as a musician, you need to spend at least 30 minutes every day with your instrument. If you can establish a routine that involves helpful repetition, you’ll build the foundation necessary for ongoing improvement. Although you’ll see some progress at this level, you won’t get to maximize your growth. Most of your time will be spent warming up, which means you will dominate the scales and potentially fail to read your sheet music.

Practicing for Up to 7 Hours Per Week

When you can practice for an average of an hour each day, you’ll start to see more of the progress you want with your instrument. Some instructors say that this is the minimum time you need to see your abilities change as the months pass. It lets you get a warm-up in, try some different musical pieces, and work on your technique.

How Long Are You Practicing Right Now?

Some musicians expect fast improvements with their playing style when they commit to an hour per day over a few weeks. That won’t always be the case. The trend often starts slow before becoming an upward curve.

If you practice for an hour daily and get an hour with a professional instructor, you’ll still have fun without losing your entire day to this work. This structure maximizes your learning potential so that you can see the rapid progress in your skills. 

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