There are basic guidelines to follow when applying learning anything, whether you’re new or you have some experience you can’t ignore the basics. Learning violin is divided into the mental and the physical. The mental aspects are your learning strategy, commitment, and motivation. The physical aspects are dexterity, muscle memory, and instrument care. Here are the five things, in no particular order, you can’t forget when learning violin.
1. You need a violin! I’ve heard many people, interested in learning rent viola, ask if they need to buy one. It is possible to rent, but the bottom line is that if you put in part time effort, you’ll get part time results. You’ll learn to play violin, but you won’t learn quickly and you won’t become great at it. You develop muscle memory through regular practice, not intermittent sessions, which brings me to the second thing on my list.
2. Practice violin regularly. When learning violin you must have a commitment of a certain amount of hours you’re going to play per week. Decide how much you want to invest in learning, write it down, and schedule time to learn to play violin.
3. If you’re only going to be practicing violin a few times a week, I’d recommend you set aside one area in your home for violin playing. This will put you in the mindset to be learning violin whenever you go there. If you’re practicing daily, I don’t think it matters as much as you’re more apt to stay in the correct mindset all the time.
4. Relax when playing violin; tense fingers don’t move as smoothly. When you’re tense, odds are you’re going to be focused on something besides learning violin in the first place. Loosen up, stretch, whatever relaxes you before you decide to play. You don’t need to be taking out your hostilities on your violin strings.
5. Take care of your violin. It doesn’t matter if you’re a master or a novice, if your instrument isn’t tuned and taken care of, it will sound terrible or eventually fail on you altogether. Violin care includes things like keeping the bow rosined, keeping the dust off the violin (in time it may grow to bond with the varnish), and not touching or over tightening the hair.
If you’re passionate about learning violin, this shouldn’t be too hard of a list to follow. I understand that in many cases, violins can be expensive, but there are quality instruments that can be found cheaply. Good luck learning violin!