5 Hand Exercises to Make Playing the Piano and Woodwind Instruments Easier

After hours in piano practice, your hands may feel tired, stiff, achy, or sore. However, you can reduce inflammation and improve your speed by following some simple exercises for your hands. Take a look at five exercise you should be using each day to improve your instrumental skills.

Form a circle with your thumb and first finger. Begin to move your thumb to meet each of your other fingers. Try this action in different patterns on both hands simultaneously. It will help you when learning new finger positions and improve muscle tone within the joints of your fingers, hands, and wrists.

Getting Stressed With a Stress Ball
Stress balls are commonly used to take out emotional disturbances in the material world, and music shares a similar relationship with relieving stress. However, a stress ball allows you to improve circulation and strength within your hands. Squeeze the stress ball throughout the day and prior to rehearsal. This will improve your performance, especially when trying to ensure all fingers hit the appropriate keys for complex notes and rhythms.

Twirling an Object
Take a pen, pencil, or other long, thin object, and twirl the item between your fingers. Try twirling two objects in different hands while in opposing directions. For example, begin twirling a pen from your little finger towards your thumb in your right hand, and twirl another object from your thumb towards your little finger in your left hand.

Simple Range of Motion
Range of motion is commonly used by physical therapists, physicians, and clinicians to improve circulation, help with inflammation, and improve stamina in muscles. To begin, you need to understand two types of range of motion: active and passive. In passive range of motion, you will use your right hand to move your left hand through the steps. In active range of motion, you will be actively moving the given hand.

For example, begin active range of motion by “air-writing” all of the letters of the alphabet with each finger. Next, move your hands in a circular motion at least 10 times. In passive range of motion, you will move each finger in all direction with your other hand. To imagine passive range of motion, think of another person moving your hands for you.

The Sound of a Simple Chord
Your hands are susceptible to muscle memory, which will improve the health of your hands. However, you must take care to not overwork their muscles. Pick out one or two of your favorite chords, such as G Major, and practice the chord every other day. On opposing days, pick another chord that requires slightly different hand movements.
By following these five tips, you can make learning to play and becoming a professional musician easier.