CAN YOU REALLY LIVE LONGER BY PLAYING OR LEARNING TO PLAY THE

PIANO?

 

Health Benefits of Playing After 50

It is known that listening to music has positive health effects on people of all ages: it has been shown to reduce STRESS, BLOOD PRESSURES, and FEELINGS OF PAIN. Now, there is a growing body of research indicating that playing music has positive, lasting health benefits for older people.

There is evidence that engaging in brain “workouts” can help stave off dementia and keep your mind sharp into old age. Learning music or playing challenging pieces are considered excellent ways to keep the brain in top shape.

In one study, conducted by Pennsylvania State University researchers, it was found that ten, 60 to 75 minute sessions of brain exercises designed to boost memory, mental processing and reasoning skills resulted in better cognitive skills as much as five years later in older people.

Studying music does all of these things – and, as a bonus – has also been shown to REDUCE

  1. Anxiety
  2. Depression
  3.  Loneliness.

In the Music Making and Wellness project, a group of 61 retirees took group keyboard lessons for two 10-week semesters and another group, which included 69 retirees, did not receive the lessons. Anxiety, depression and loneliness were reduced in the keyboard group (as measured through self-assessment tools) while the group that did not take keyboard lessons reported no change in these feelings.

Loneliness, depression and anxiety not only reduce feelings of wellbeing, but they have been shown to have negative effects on overall health. Playing music, particularly with others, is a wonderful way to remain happy, healthy and mentally engaged well into older age.