Hand Stretching Exercises for Piano Players
Stiffness in shoulders, wrists and arms is one of the biggest complaints in
piano players. In order to overcome this problem, pianists must fully involve their arms and shoulders in
every note to re-train coordination.
Proper technique and positioning will permit energy to flow from the spine all the way to their fingers. With
simple hand stretching exercises, piano players can release unwanted tension by warming up their fingers, hands and shoulders.
There are four stages to hand stretching exercises: releasing tension and warming up arms, shoulders and
Prior to seating yourself in front of a piano, it is best to stretch your whole body. Stretch your limbs, jump
up and down, touch your toes and do whatever feels good to you. While stretching you should always take deep
breaths in and out to release any excess tension.
A perfect warm up includes bending down from the waist and letting your arms hang low, slowly raising yourself
up to extend your hands straight above your head. Repeat this step a few times until your back and arm muscles have
Once you are standing straight, shake your arms from your shoulders, loosening the entire arm and shoulder.
These exercises will enable you to warm up by removing any muscle kinks.
It is now time to specifically warm up your arms and shoulders. Stand upright with your arms stretched out away
and create small circles in the air. Do 5 circles in both directions with either one arm at a time or both at once.
Shake them out. Afterwards, create figure eights in the air with your arms, 5 in each direction. These exercises
are specifically designed to stretch out your shoulder muscles.
Once you are sitting at the piano comfortably bend over from the waist and
roll the shoulders over to touch the floor. Lift your hands up leading with the shoulders and place them onto
the keyboard. Always make sure to lead with your shoulders, not with your arms and hands.
It is now time to warm up the fingers. Drop both hands onto the keyboard and stroke your fingers up and down the
keyboard using the black keys. After a few minutes, stand up once again and roll the shoulders.
Sit back down and use one hand to massage the other. Carefully massage every finger to warm up their muscles.
You are not ready to begin playing piano. Your back, shoulders, arms and fingers have stretched and are now
It is very important to stretch prior to every session and during long piano
practices. In order to protect yourself from muscles cramps and severe medical conditions, it is vital to
routinely stretch your muscles. Common health concerns, such as carpal tunnel syndrome, can be avoided with simple
If you are playing for an extended period of time, stand up and shake your arms and shoulders multiple times
during the session. Roll your shoulders back and forth to release any built up tension. These hand stretching
exercises will also help you with coordination while playing and are vital to any healthy pianist.