As musicians practice and play music, they build many skills. Let’s look at several key abilities that musicians develop.

Music requires the ability to pay attention and focus. When you play or sing music, you have to focus on the notes that you are playing, as well as how to produce them with your body or your instrument.

When playing music, you have to control your impulses. Musicians have to know when to make a sound with their instrument or voice, and when to remain quiet.

Musicians also use flexible thinking skills. Piano players, for example, have to read two lines of music at once. One line that tells them what notes to play with their right hand, and another tells them what to play with their left.

Playing music requires you to remember multiple things at once. As you read musical notes on a page, you have to remember what to play while also looking at what notes are coming next. You have to remember features of the music, like how fast to play, or what pattern of beats the song has. If you aren’t reading sheet music, then you have to remember all your parts in the song: what notes to play, and when not to play. That’s a lot of memory practice!