Want to learn piano but can’t afford, or simply can’t get ahold of a piano teacher? Considering self-teaching?

While learning how to play piano with a teacher is always recommended, there are many reasons why this might not be possible for you, and that’s okay.

Fortunately, there are loads of ways to self-teach yourself if you want to learn piano and plenty of resources available to you.

First of all you’re going have to remember one very important thing:


One thing to keep in mind when embarking on your self-teaching is that without a teacher to discipline you and assess your progress, you’re going to have to muster a lot of self-motivation.

Though it’s completely possible to learn piano by yourself, if you seriously want to benefit from your practice and succeed, you need to have a plan.

Learning how to play an instrument is difficult, and it’s normal to get frustrated at times and want to give up. However, if you’re serious about learning and getting good, you need to set yourself up for success with a positive attitude.

Self-teaching yourself piano should be a fun and rewarding experience, and it totally can be!

Setting Up Your Practice Plan

If you want to see progress as you learn piano, you need to keep in mind and focus on the fundamentals. These are as follows:

• Reading

• Rhythm

• Technique

The fundamentals don’t have to be boring, but they are essential in order for you to see any improvement. These three things are at the foundation of learning any instrument, so they’re very important. Let’s break them down, shall we?


At least a minimal understanding of how to read a melody is really helpful when learning how to play the piano.

Many people who learn or play instruments by ear may disagree with this, but if you want to be able to play with other people, or write your own music, being able to read is an excellent skill to have.


Rhythm doesn’t come naturally to everybody, but if you want to learn piano or any instrument for that matter, it’s something you gotta have.

Rhythm gives music life. It’s the component in all your favorite songs that makes you want to tap your foot or shake your booty. Without rhythm, music just ain’t music.

When you hear a song, tap your foot and click your fingers to get used to catching the beat of a song.

If it’s something you find difficult, it might be worth investing in a metronome or familiarizing yourself with an online alternative that could help.


Finding and refining the right technique is what will help you exert control over your piano or keyboard so that what you play comes out the way you want it to.

To practice technique, you need to work on exercises that will increase your muscle sensitivity and dexterity. Once you’ve got this down, your confidence will shine through and your playing will sound much more precise.

It takes a lot of practice but it’s totally worth it, and once you get there you’ll feel great about it.

Creating Your Plan

Make a list of the goals you want to achieve as you learn piano. Whether that’s eventually being able to nail a really difficult song, or writing your own short piece. Milestones will be your motivation.

Give yourself practice routines that you can play regularly. Maybe those will include time to practice with your left hand, or even going over the 12 major scales.

How To Know You’re On The Right Track

Learn to assess your progress. Ask yourself whether you’re progressing at the rate you want. Ask yourself whether you’re playing the music you want to play. Ask yourself whether there’s anything that needs more practice.

It helps to involve friends and family too or consult forums to get others’ opinions and share your journey.

Go back over the goals you set yourself and use them to measure where you’re at.

Tracking your progress is crucial, but don’t be too harsh on yourself if you’re not hitting your targets as quickly as you’d like. You don’t want your frustration to turn to self-defeat.

Tips To Help You Learn Piano

You’re not going to go from beginner to pro straight off the bat, so how is the best way to practice? Here are a couple of tips that might come in handy.

Music Theory

So this may not be the most exciting bit about learning an instrument, but in the same way as the three fundamentals, it’s pretty crucial.

Music theory teaches you the names of notes and how they conform to the piano keys. Studying music theory will help you learn to read music, which as we mentioned before is one of the key fundamentals.

Being able to read music will help you pick up new pieces more easily. Once you master it, your fingers will be able to recognise each note, each key quicker than before.

Break Things Down

It’s nice to think that practicing a piece from beginning to end will glue it in our memory.

In actual fact, it’s more useful to isolate sections of the songs you’re learning to practice rather than repeatedly playing them all in one go.

If playing with two hands is difficult, play each section separately, and then once you feel more confident, try playing them together again.

Learn chords and go over the major keys, and you’ll begin noticing patterns. All music is made up of patterns. Which chords go well with others? The more you break things down, the more you’ll understand how melodies and baselines are

The more you break things down, the more you’ll understand how melodies and baselines are composed.

Also, make sure you’re playing music you like. Don’t force yourself to place pieces you find boring because this will only frustrate you. Playing music you love is what will make learning piano fun for you.

While the technical skills needed to learn piano are important, experimentation is also beneficial. Exploring and experimenting with the scales and songs you’ve been practicing by introducing random notes will help you find your sound.

Find A Piano Buddy

So you’ve got your plan down, and maybe a handy music theory book too. What next?

Well, one thing you can’t get from your theory book or your plan is proper support from someone who cares.

As we mentioned before, getting your friends or family involved is a great way to get solid, honest feedback on your progress. Even better than that though, is a piano buddy. Somebody who plays, or is also learning that can be there for you.

Invest yourselves in each other’s progress. Share constructive feedback and recognise the hard work you’re putting into practicing.

It doesn’t matter if your buddy isn’t a professional teacher, it’s still useful to have a fresh pair of ears and eyes. It’s also good to vent any frustrations you may have and talk about the things you’re learning or finding especially tricky.

Having a piano buddy will not only give you another perspective, but it’ll motivate you to practice harder, whether out of a sense of competitiveness or simply so you can show off what you’ve learned when you next meet.

If you’re having a tough time finding a piano buddy, be sure to check meet up to see if there are any piano learners or groups in your local area that want to meet. If not, why not create your own?

A Helpful Tool For When You Learn Piano

As you know, it’s not just about your approach and technique. You need to have the correct tools to help you. Of course, if you plan on learning to play piano, you need to find the right one for you.

Here at Smart Piano, we sell pianos that actively help you learn. Our pianos can connect to iPads and teach you, no teacher required.

It’ll cost you less than hiring a teacher, which can cost you $60 to $200 an hour. With a lesson or two a week, that will definitely add up. Our intuitive pianos make for an elegant modern and cost-effective solution.

Follow the lights on your keyboard or piano, and don’t worry about a teacher getting impatient or angry with you. You can work at your own pace, and what’s better than that?

You can download our app for free on our website. Originally started as a project on IndieGogo, it garnered so much interest and funding that our smart pianos and accompanying app became a reality.

You can download the app for IOS and Android. With thousands of songs, free sheet music and quality video lessons and games, The One app will help you find your preferred learning style.

Whenever and wherever you want, The One will be your ultimate learning companion. If you have any questions or want to find out more, get in touch with us today, we’d love to help you out!