Cognitive Training And The Benefit Of Studying Music

studying music

The Misconception:

For a long time, many people have generally believed that studying music from a young age and listening to classical music will turn their children into geniuses. While science in the 21st century does not necessarily confirm this theory in a formal sense, it hints at a more complicated truth that is just as attractive. According to scientists, reading and performing music pulls together cognitive functions and skill sets from all different regions of the brain, thereby encouraging more robust cognitive functions, memory, and even communication skills.

So, as it turns out, while music will not necessarily make your child smarter (in the sense of actually improving their IQ), it will forge neural pathways and encourage brain plasticity that will not only help them as they develop into teens and then adults, but even in to later life when brain functions start to deteriorate.

Why This Could Be Life-Changing

Because we live in a time where the job market is constantly changing and it is difficult to lock down a reliable career, the kind of flexible thinking encouraged by playing music regularly could be incredibly useful to many. We no longer live in a world where you develop one specialized skill set from a young age and ride that out until retirement; we live in a world where people will have to constantly reinvent themselves to adapt to a rapid pace of development – or face unemployment. If this sounds a little bleak, we’ve got some good news for you.

Start Where You Are:

Recent studies showed that even in individuals upwards of sixty years, prolonged study of music improved memory, ability to process information, planning and several other abilities vital to a happy and fulfilling life. So, if you’re younger than sixty but you feel like you missed the boat (let’s say you’re in your twenties or forties, for example), you are in fact mistaken – you can still integrate the many benefits of music lessons into your life.

studying music

Cognitive Training (Just A Lot More Fun)

As humans live to a later and later age, we are encouraged to engage in cognitive training to keep our minds stronger. While there are many ways to achieve this, most methods of cognitive training are like repetitive video games that aren’t very fun. Playing a musical instrument – and challenging yourself to learn to read music as an adult – not only strengthens your brain, you’ll also get a rush of endorphins and fulfillment as you successfully learn to play Let It Be on the piano. While these kinds of skills may be impressive and fun to play around with, there is a deeper benefit that can help you maintain a high quality of life.

Coming Full Circle

So, as we’ve established, learning music later in life is not only an okay idea, it could actually make a seriously positive impact. Encouraging musicality in your children is highly advisable, as it means they will have many of these advantages right from the start. The concern, of course, is that you may push them too hard and discourage them. So use a gentle touch and see if it takes – if it doesn’t stick, maybe they’ll pick it up later in life.

 

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