Thanks to the internet, there are now more options for learning to play an instrument than ever before. While many musicians still opt to attend in-person lessons, others are seeking out brand new ways to learn and improve their musical abilities.
Pre-recorded video lessons, Skype lessons, training modules, and online exercises are all examples of the new ways musicians can fine-tune their skill without even having to walk out their front door. There are a lot of advantages to taking music lessons online, but there are a few disadvantages to be aware of, too.
The Benefits of Online Music Lessons
Online lessons are more convenient. By far, the biggest benefit to online instrument lessons is that it’s ridiculously convenient. After all, how cool is it that you get to learn and grow as a musician from the comfort of your own home?
There’s no travel time to account for and there’s often much more flexibility when scheduling lesson times, since you’re not restricted to standard business hours. Online lessons also allow you to be fully in control of setting your own learning pace.
Online lessons give you more choices. Unfortunately, many would-be musicians simply don’t have access to a reliable music teacher in their area. If you live in a very rural area, are part of a military family that moves around a lot, or simply live in a town without a music teacher who specializes in your instrument, it can be next to impossible to locate a good teacher who will work for you. Taking online lessons means you can find the perfect music teacher for you, even if they live 1,000 miles away. Take a look at the benefits offered by our friends at TakeLessons and The ZOEN – both are excellent places to find and connect with an online teacher.
Online lessons are more cost-effective. Due to the convenience and flexibility for the teacher as well as the student, online music lessons can be lower-priced than traditional in-house lessons. If you’re passionate about learning a new instrument but aren’t keen to shell out huge sums of cash, online lessons are definitely a worthwhile option.
Online lessons offer some unique benefits. There are some advantages associated with online instrument lessons that just can’t be replicated in-house. Many sites that offer online music lessons also offer other e-learning support tools like community forums, training modules, and premium digital content. Sharing content and connecting with others online is often quicker, easier, and more effective than it is in-person. Something as simple as having a supportive online community to lean on when you hit a roadblock can make all the difference in your training.
The Drawbacks of Online Music Lessons
Online lessons don’t allow for physical guidance. Beginners who are just getting the hang of playing an instrument often have poor form and may handle their instrument awkwardly or ineffectively. While it’s usually easy for an instructor to manually correct these posture and technique issues in person, it’s much more challenging when they can’t physically demonstrate the change. This is especially true when the music student is forgoing an instructor altogether.
Online lessons require a strong internet connection. While a lack of WiFi is rarely an issue in this day and age, it’s worth pointing out that if your internet connection goes out during your scheduled lesson time, you’ll likely have to miss and reschedule your lesson. Similarly, if your home internet is usually slow or has a poor connection, you could find yourself dealing with bad video quality and transmission delays.
Online lessons require more personal motivation. If you’re relying on pre-recorded video modules to learn to play your instrument, that means the only person holding you accountable for your lessons is you. If you’re feeling lazy and decide to skip your lessons for the day, it can make it difficult to get back on track and keep up with your practice schedule.
Showing up for in-house lessons is more of a commitment that’s not as easy to blow off. Sticking to online lessons requires much more personal motivation, which can be a challenge for some learners.
There are definite pros and cons to online instrument lessons as well as in-person lessons. In the end, the key is finding a learning style that works well for you and sticking to it, no matter what.
What are your thoughts on online vs. in-house music lessons?
Share your ideas with us in the comments below!