Research collated by Music For All highlights numerous physical and mental health benefits to making and playing music.
Released ahead Learn To Play Day 2019 – which takes place on the weekend of 23rd March and sees many outlets around the UK offering free music lessons to people of all ages – the charity hae compiled research which all suggests that making music makes you healthier and happier.
Results from a wide aray of sources referenced in the paper suggest that learning an instrument as a child makes you more intelligent as an adult in relation to memory, verbal ability, spatial ability, processing speed and attention.
Other research also suggest that making and playing music lessens the deterioration of physical health in elderly people and reduce the need for certain types of medication. Playing piano, for instance, apparently exercises the heart just as much as a brisk walk.
According to the paper, making music literally helps develop your brain, with instrumental music training positively altering the the anatomy of the brain with greater grey matter volumes in motor-related areas.
“Collating this research on the health benefits is just another reason why we as a charity believe that everyone should have the opportunity to learn to play,” said Music For All’s CEO Paul McManus in an official statement “It’s clear that the desire to learn to play is there from the public as our research also indicated that, out of those people who have never played, 58% (14.6m) would like to learn to play a musical instrument, and an astonishing 76% of non-players said that they wished they had learnt to play an instrument.”
Last year, research by Deakin University in Victoria, Australia, concluded that live music makes people happier and live longer. In August 2018, a study also showed that music can reduce anxiety and stress levels by up to 65%. With that said, another study released last October suggested that many music industry workers are subjected to inordinately high levels of stress.
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