Learning to play a musical instrument isn't always easy. However, the piano is still recognised as one of the easiest musical instruments to learn. How long it takes a person to learn the piano is dependent on them: their time, consistency, commitment and dedication.

Do you feel that your left hand is weaker than your right hand and is holding you back in your piano playing? Do not worry yourself, we all have a dominant hand, and for most of us, it is the right hand.

If you are having troubles with either hand on the piano, you can get the help you need here in Nigeria with one of the piano tutors on Superprof via face to face lessons or online.

In playing the piano, one of the hardest things people face isn't necessarily being able to follow the music or reading the theoretical aspect impeccably, but about what you do with your hands. You are no good if you can glide your right-hand seamlessly through the keyboard and have a hard time using your left hand.

You need to be able to use both your right and left hand simultaneously. This is one topic that music lovers and piano enthusiasts don't talk about in Nigeria. However, we are here to help you understand how you can work on using your left hand. So in this guide, we’re going to address how to master the left-hand technique so it isn’t left behind mid-performance.

This however means that this guide is going to focus on pianists with a dominant right hand, but the learning principles apply the same to lefties. So if you are comfortable with your left hand, you can apply these same principles to work on your right hand.

To accelerate the time at which you will learn to master how to play the piano, you must dedicate some time to working on your weaker hand be, it the left or right one. Practising on the weaker hand is something we recommend doing regularly anyway and in no time, you will master how to use both hands seamlessly while playing the keyboard.

How to improve your Left-hand piano techniques
Taking time to practice on your weaker hands is key to mastering your piano skills. Source: Unsplash
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Why Should I Improve On My Left-Hand Technique?

You may still be wondering why it is important you need to improve on your left-hand technique or your weaker hands while playing the piano. Lets us do a little exercise to further elaborate on why you need to improve on it to be better at playing the piano.

One of the best ways to explain this is by taking a look at how you type on your keyboard.

Now without using your left hand at all and write a few sentences for like 3 minutes about one of your favourite movies.

Ok, so how did that go?

Well, I'm sure the first thing that comes to your mind, is that you were so slow at typing just a few words. Just imagine if it were to be an essay. Strenuous right?

Without the left-hand side of your keyboard, you don’t have access to essential letters like ‘a’, ‘e’, 'q', 'z' and ‘t’.

That seems like a big problem especially if you are one of the people that derives joy in typing well and fast.

Though this example may be a bit exaggerated considering we are talking about the piano which you are and must always use both hands together. But what we’re getting at is how difficult it is to rely on only your dominant hand for an activity that requires you to be ambidextrous (the ability to use the right and left hands equally well)

This, however, means that you will be lagging and slowed down if your left hand is not doing the job properly while playing on the piano. You need both hands to be strengthened and also work at the same pace.

So now that with a little illustration, you now understand why we are focusing on the importance of the left-hand technique, What can you then do about it. This will be discussed below in the next subheading of this article.

Hire An Experienced Tutor

Get a piano tutor on Superprof Nigeria
The services of an experienced tutor can help you improve on your left-hand or weaker hand technique. Source: Unsplash

If you want to learn easily, fast and well, then the truth is that you will need the help of an experienced piano tutor. Having a helping hand makes everything easier for people generally.

Of course, you can get resources to help teach yourself how to play but there's nothing like having an extra set of eyes to supervise you.

Having an experienced piano tutor will guide you through every step by step process, will help you identify any mistakes and they will also tailor the class to meet your needs and expectations.

You will be working with someone who knows about the instrument and is experienced in playing it. It would be an interactive session where you can learn from their own previous mistakes and also an opportunity for them to introduce you to materials and musicians that they love.

For example, your tutor could introduce you to a particular classical musician that they enjoy or they could show you how they make playing the piano enjoyable for them. They can save you countless hours and make the learning process a joy, alleviating some of the common frustrations associated with it.

It is also an excellent way to keep you motivated especially when you are having challenges with any aspect of the keyboard. It’s always rewarding to find someone who has a similar interest in a specific skill you are learning.

If you are wondering where to get good and experienced private piano tutors, why not check out Superprof?

At superprof, you will get several options of piano tutors who are ready to come to teach you at home or give you online lessons. There is always a tutor near you regardless of your location in Nigeria and one that will suit your budget and needs.

Here are a couple of exercises subheaded below to get your left hand up to speed.

Exercise: Finger Fluidity

Left hand exercises that helps a piano player
Doing some of these left-hand exercises can help in improving dexterity. Source: Unsplash

The first exercise we are going to discuss for this article is called finger fluidity. This is a very easy exercise any pianist or aspiring pianist can easily do with ease. These exercises are not difficult, however, it is with regular practice you will get to improve on your left hand.

You will need need a piano, something to sit on and of course, your fingers. This exercise aims to loosen up the fingers of your left hand so that it’s less of an issue to play the keys smoothly.

When you’re in position, this is what you will do:

  •  With your non-dominant hand, be it your right or left hand, place your four fingers and thumb on the piano across five different keys.
  •  Next, all you’re going to do is gently roll your fingers starting with your pinky till reach your thumb and then back again.

Ensure you are playing each key and not at a fast pace. After doing this for a few rounds, you might notice that you feel the tension in your left hand and your pinky finger may be sticking out. Realize that this is perfectly normal, and it’s part of the exercise process.

  • When you start to get more comfortable with this exercise, you can come up with a pattern to follow to make things more challenging. For example, you can play something like 5,1,1,3,3,2,3,4,4 or any other combination of your choice. The whole idea is to get a grip on your fingers.

Exercise 2: Finger Flow

The second exercise that will be discussed is the finger flow. This is all about improving the movement capability of your left hand. You want to be able to work up to the point at which your left hand can flow across the keys just as well as your right hand can do. The whole idea is to achieve a simultaneous flow with both the left and right hands.

Let us take a look at what you need to do for this second type of exercise.

  • Similar to the first exercise, start by placing the fingers and thumb of your left hand across five keys on the piano
  •  Then, play the key beneath your pinky finger and move your thumb one key to the right and play that key.

What we are trying to achieve here is for your fingers to flow more easily along with the keys. This might be tricky to do at first, and it might take a few attempts, but try to stick with it as the exercise will help your left hand well and also have huge positive implications for your piano-playing skills.

  • The progression from this movement is to slide along the keys so that your pinky finger and thumb are hitting different keys each time. There’s a good chance that by doing this exercise your fingers will start to ache after a while, so make sure to stretch and shake them out once you’re done.

The more you practice, the less the aches and the better you become at playing with your left or weaker hand since these principles and exercises work both ways.

Remember you can always get a private tutor on Superpof Nigeria regardless of your location.

You can also read up:

How Adults Can Learn To Play The Piano In Nigeria

Reasons Why Learning Music Theory Is Important?

Why Piano Songs Are Important At Every Level

 

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Oyin

I am a creative freelancer and fashion designer who loves to travel, explore and meet new people.