How to SLOW DOWN Your Playing

Piano Lessons / Uncategorized / How to SLOW DOWN Your Playing

Welcome to, I’m Robert Estrin. Today’s subject is about how to establish a slower tempo on the piano. It’s the funniest thing. I have students, and sometimes they have difficulty playing something. So I tell them to play more slowly. More often than not, they play exactly the same tempo! You might wonder, how do you establish a slower tempo?

The simplest way to establish a slower tempo is to figure out the tempo you’re playing and then slow it down.

This may not be the easiest thing in the world to achieve. Let’s say you’re playing a piece, like the Mozart Sonata in C major k 545. If you have insecurity, you may want to play it slower. The first thing you do is figure out the speed you were playing, then just slow that down. You may need to tap the beat along with your playing with your foot to find the speed you are playing first. Then slow down the tapping, and start playing at the new tempo. Now you can play at that slower tempo! That’s one way to achieve a slower tempo.

Another way to slow your tempo is to simply play the first note, wait a moment, and continue at that slower rate.

Play the first note, but linger a little longer. Then just continue playing at that slower tempo. You wouldn’t think it would be so hard to play slower. But unless you establish a slower tempo intentionally, you may think you’re playing slower, but you probably aren’t. You can check this with a metronome.

You can use a metronome to find a slower tempo.

Find the speed at which you’re playing on the metronome. Many metronome applications on your phone have a tap tempo feature. If you have that feature, you can tap to establish the tempo, then slow it down. To slow it down, just turn the metronome to a slower speed. There are many metronome applications that give this feature. It can be really helpful. Sometimes just being able to find the speed at which you’re playing on the metronome can be difficult. The tap feature can be a real help. Traditional physical metronomes have their benefits. They have the notches that don’t contain every single number. Changing tempo by every number is too small a change for working with progressively faster metronome speeds. But for the purpose of finding the tempo you are playing, a metronome app with the tap feature is invaluable.

Those are the tips on how to establish a slower tempo!

One of the most important aspects of practicing the piano effectively, is slowing things down! Even pieces you can play comfortably at a fast speed will degrade over time if you don’t play them slower from time to time, intentionally looking at the music, playing with a metronome, without the pedal. That’s the way to gain security and to keep your pieces fresh and at a good performance level. I hope this is helpful for you! Thanks again for joining me, Robert Estrin here at, Your Online Piano Resource.

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