It’s tough to explain to piano students why they should care about fixing their flat-fingered playing position. But I know why I care about fixing it…
Playing with flat fingers is unnecessarily hard and results in music that, quite simply put, doesn’t sound very good… which could very well result in piano students quitting lessons.
But kids who play with flat fingers don’t necessarily care about a piano teacher’s retention rate. So, we are then presented with two challenges:
- How to fix flat fingers
- How to make kids care about fixing flat fingers
In today’s post (and also the SUPER helpful posts we’ve included at the bottom) we’re going to attack both of these challenges. In doing so, we’ll help you eliminate one big, but often overlooked, reason kids quit piano lessons: It is too physically challenging to warrant the effort required to learn piano.
How To Fix Your Piano Students’ Flat Fingers
To solve the flat-finger piano problem I’ve invited Dr. Chris Foley to join us on the Teach Piano Today Helpline. Dr. Foley is a Toronto-based pianist and teacher who spends much of his time training adjudicators for the Royal Conservatory of Music. Today’s podcast is jam-packed with actionable advice including:
- Three things you want to correct before hands and fingers: Many of us jump straight to the hands when trying to correct flat fingers. But is this the best place to start? Maybe not! Flat fingers can be a symptom of other problems and if these aren’t addressed first, you’ll get nowhere.
- How to find a natural and rounded hand shape: After playing for eight hours straight Dr. Foley had a hand-shape epiphany that makes complete sense when you hear what it was he discovered.
- How to motivate kids to care about hand position: There are certainly more thrilling things in the life of a child than piano hand position… but when you explicitly draw attention to the personal benefits… they WILL care.
This podcast is less than 10 minutes long, but it’s packed with practical information you can use right away! Click below to listen now or visit our iTunes page where you can download this Episode (and many more) to your iPod or smartphone to take it on the go!
Are Your Students Struggling With Technique?
Check out our other blog posts for help with teaching technique: