15 Steps to Learn How To Play Piano

Here you will learn how to play piano in easy-to-follow steps. We have videos for each section to help better understand the basics of the piano.

Learning how to play the piano is an excellent way for beginners and experts alike to express themselves. It’s also a perfect form of exercise, as it requires both mental and physical agility.

The following steps will help you learn how to play the piano in no time! Follow these fifteen easy tips to learn how to play the piano step by step.

If you do not have access to a piano in front of you, you can play with a free virtual piano online to learn the basics.

Learn How To Play Piano For Beginners
Learn How To Play Piano For Beginners

15 Steps to Learn How To Play Piano

1. Label Piano Key With Letters

If you are new to music, labeling the piano keys can be very helpful to understand the keyboard better. You can use white masking tape to label your piano keys or get special stickers to put on your piano keys to help identify the different keys.

How To Label Keys On the Piano/Keyboard

You can label your white keys with letters from A to G. These are the notes you play when pressing a piano key: A, B, C, D, E, F, and G.

Labeling your black keys will help you because they can be identified by how many sharps or flats they have.

The black keys on the music keyboard always go in twos and threes too. Press two or three black notes together to play a sharp note, and press two or three white notes together for a flat note.

Sticker Version – The stickers look cleaner and are inexpensive.

Last update on 2021-11-23 / Affiliate Links


2. Learn Notes on The Piano Keyboard

Learning the different notes is essential because this is how you read sheet music and play songs on the piano.

There are 7 notes that are repeated on the piano: C, D, E, F, G, A, B

Learn Notes on The Piano Keyboard

These notes repeat several times through the keys, depending on how many piano keys you have. The C appears in front of the 2 black keys.

Learn Piano Keys And Notes – Piano Keyboard Diagrams

3. Learn Correct Finger Placement on The Keys

The middle C note is the most important place on the keyboard. This is how you start counting in music and know how far to move up or down on the keyboard.

Video: Guide to Proper Piano Hand Position.

Everyone has ten fingers, so it’s best to use them all when playing the keyboard. When playing the piano, you will be using all your fingers, sometimes two at a time.


4. Practice Playing Each Key Individually

Start playing each of the white keys where you can play them very slowly, making sure that your fingers are not touching more than one key. Do this until you feel comfortable with how high or how low to place your fingers on the piano keys.

When you practice playing each key, make sure you use your pinky finger with your index finger to play the white keys.

Now practice playing each of the black keys. Make sure you use your ring finger with your middle finger or your pointer finger with your middle finger to play the black keys. You will always use either two fingers together or three fingers together to play the notes on the piano.


5. Try Common Beginner Piano Exercises

Different types of piano exercises for beginners include scales, chords, arpeggios, and playing notes.

Here is a collection of piano exercises to help you warm up and better understand sound.

The Top 5 Piano Exercises For Beginners
Piano Exercises For Beginners (Speed, Dexterity, Hand Independence, Control)
5 Simple Piano Exercises For Building Technique

Scales will help you learn how to play the piano fast because they teach you to play each key correctly. Scales are how most songs sound, so learning how to play them is essential.

Piano Chords are three notes that sound good together, and they can be used in many songs. They are how most songs start.

Arpeggios are when you play the notes in a chord one at a time to create a faster sound. Notes are how you play individual notes to create songs or how you can start a chord. You will learn how to play each kind of note as you know how to play the piano.


6. Learn How To Play Piano Chords

Piano chords are how you play more than one note at a time on the piano.

There are different types of chords that you can play, including major, minor, and seventh chords.

Each type has its own sound, so listen closely to how they all sound to see which type you want to play.

Once you know how they sound, learn how to play every kind of chord.

A major chord is how you play three notes at once, and you always start with the root note and add a third and fifth above it.

https://youtu.be/MLkFwlh7Zeo
Piano Chords: The Basics

A minor chord is how you play three notes at once.

The only difference between how you play a major chord and how you play a minor chord is how you begin the first note.

A seventh chord is how you play four notes at once, which means that you will always start with the root note and then add a third, a fifth, and an octave above it.

It can be helpful to get a piano chord poster or chord book to learn different chords.

Piano Chord Books

Last update on 2021-11-23 / Affiliate Links

Piano Chord Posters

Last update on 2021-11-23 / Affiliate Links

If you learn piano chords, you can pretty much start making music. Many songs consist of a variety of chords.

Four Chords Piano: Play 70 Songs in 6 Minutes Using The Same Chords!!
All 12 Major Chords – Piano

7. Try Using Both Hands

As you get better at playing piano, you can start using both hands. This is how you will be able to play faster and more complicated songs on the piano.

It also helps to learn how to play different rhythms in your songs, like how fast or slow they should go.

Easy Two-Handed Piano Playing Tips and Exercises

Once you learn how to play your notes, chords, and scales in both hands, you will feel more confident in yourself. This is how you will be able to play many more songs on the piano.


8. Learn What Octaves Are

Octaves are how you play the same note eight notes apart on the piano. For example, if you play one C key, moving eight keys over to the right will be another C key because that’s how many keys there are to a piano octave.

Octaves are vital because you can play a lower octave and then an octave above it to create an entirely different sound. As you learn how to play different octaves, you will learn how to play higher and lower notes.

Music Theory – What is an OCTAVE

9. Learn How To Read Music

Once you learn how to play the piano, you will read how to play sheet music. There are different ways that songs can be written on paper.

How To Read Notes (Beginner Piano Lesson)

The first way is how you see notes on a staff. A staff has five lines and four spaces on it, with each line representing how high or how low the note should sound and how fast it should go.

How to Read Notes Fast – The Landmark System

The second way songs can be written on paper is to see how the notes move up and down a staff, like how fast they should go, how loud or how soft they should sound, and where the following note occurs.

Free Piano Sheet Music

  1. Making Music Fun
  2. 8 Notes
  3. Piano Song Download

10. Play Your First Music Sheet

Once you learn how to play the piano, you can play a few notes on a music sheet that will sound good together.

It is how some songs start and how most beginner piano songs start.

Start by learning how to play simple music sheets like Twinkle, Twinkle Little Star, or Mary Had a Little Lamb.

Once you learn how to play those songs, move on to playing the chorus of a song like Happy Birthday.

How To Play Happy Birthday On The Piano (Basic & Jazzy Version)

Free Sheet Music

Easy Piano Tutorial: Twinkle Twinkle Little Star

11. Learn Timing

As you play more and more, learning how to time things correctly will become necessary. This means how fast or how slow the song should go or how many beats should be in a measure of music.

Once you learn how timing works on paper, it can help you learn how to read sheet music faster to play songs immediately after reading them instead of practicing them for an extended period before playing them altogether.

Understanding Rhythm (Beginner Piano Theory)

You can use a metronome to learn to time even better. A metronome is how you keep track of how fast or how slow the song goes when you are trying to learn how to play the piano.

You can check 10 Free Online Metronomes to help with timing.

The Best Way to Count Rhythms Accurately

12. Practice, Practice, Practice

The best way to learn how to play the piano is by practicing as much as you can.

Every day, practice how to play different songs and learn how many beats there should be in a measure.

Create a schedule and routine to practice playing the piano. You will not become a professional overnight. It will take time to learn how to play the piano. Everyone starts somewhere.

The PERFECT Piano Practice MORNING ROUTINE

Once you have learned how to play your first song, practice how to play it better, and do other things on the piano.

Keep learning how different chords work and how different octaves are played. Soon enough, you will be able to play complicated songs on the piano.

Practice all of the tips above, and soon you will be able to play piano like an expert.

The PERFECT Piano Practice Morning Routine (For Beginners)

13. Study Pianists

You can watch how pianists play on YouTube. Please pay attention to how they move their fingers up and down the keys.

This will show how they do it to mimic them when you are trying to learn how to play piano yourself.

Learn where their hands are positioned, how fast they move their fingers, and any other tips that may help learn how to play piano in general.


14. Have Fun & Enjoy Yourself!

Just like how runners enjoy running or how bakers enjoy baking, how you learn to play the piano should be fun.

Learning how to play the piano should be enjoyable, to make sure to play better with time.

You will not become a professional overnight, but you will start to enjoy playing the piano in no time at all.


15. Take Online Courses

If you want to speed up the learning process to play piano, take some video courses online. There are many expert courses online that you can take to learn how to play piano in a short period.

Skillshare has hundreds of courses online from professionals to help you learn to play the piano fast.

Here are a few popular piano courses online:

  1. Piano Lessons For Beginners
  2. 24 Hours of Piano Lessons
  3. Play The Piano By Ear
  4. Learn Piano Basics in 50 Minutes
  5. The Fundamentals of Piano Playing

Learning is easy when you have a guide to teach you how to play the piano.


Bonus: Learn to Play By Ear

Many talented musicians can play music without reading music and playing by ear. This is a skill that does not come easy but can be achieved with practice.

Here are a couple of videos with tips on learning how to play by ear.

https://youtu.be/i3-w8GTq7Rw
How to Play Piano by Ear!
Play Songs By Ear On The Piano (No Score, No Chord Charts)

Conclusion

Learning how to play the piano is not as hard as it may seem. If you understand the basics and practice often, you will continue to grow, and it will become easier.

Make it a habit to practice daily, follow the tips above, and you will become a pro before you know it.

Patience is important. Things may seem overwhelming at first, but it gets easier with time. Good luck!

Mark V. at Hip Hop Makers

Written By Mark V.

Hip Hop Makers is a music production website that launched in 2008 to teach music lovers how to make music, sell beats, and make money from music.

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