Mindfulness in the Piano Lesson: Where Do We Start?

In the Summer 2023 Piano Magazine issue, Fernanda Nieto posed a question about mindfulness in the piano studio: how do we help our students deal with the stresses in piano lessons but also in everyday life? Enjoy this excerpt from her article, and consider how you can help your students manage the many stresses in their lives. Read the full article at https://pianoinspires.com/article/mindfulness-in-the-piano-lesson-where-do-we-start/.

“Young people today are experiencing increasing levels of stress and anxiety, and piano students are not immune to this reality. At all levels, students rely on us for quality piano instruction, emotional support, mentorship, and guidance. What tools can we utilize during lessons to enhance our students’ well-being and emotional health? How can we incorporate these practices without compromising time management and our teaching goals?

While mindfulness can be helpful at any point during our lessons, one approach is to keep its practice consistent within the lesson structure. By practicing breathing exercises at the start of our lessons, we give our minds an opportunity to leave distractions behind. After I welcome my students, I often ask, “How would you like to breathe today?” Utilizing visual aids, I demonstrate a couple of options so that they can see these exercises in action. Modeling breathing and practicing it with my students allows them to feel comfortable with mindfulness. It also gives both of us the opportunity to ease into a calmer lesson environment.”


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