How to Improve a Sense of Rhythm

By Contributor ; Updated September 15, 2017
Improve a Sense of Rhythm

How to Improve a Sense of Rhythm. Whether you are a singer or instrumental musician, or simply just want to improve your feel for music, you may wish you had a better sense of rhythm. Follow these steps to help you "feel" music, instead of just hear it or play it. You will need a music player and a little space to do this exercise.

Put on one of your favorite moderate or slow tempo songs. Choose music with a steady beat. Music with an irregular beat is very difficult to adjust to.

Listen for a moment and focus on predicting exactly when each beat will come in the music.

Identify the first beat, which is always the heaviest, as a starting point for your counting. Most of the time you can count 1, 2, 3 and 4 with the music, although some only have three beats.

Take small steps in place to the beat, much like a marching band member. Beginning with the first beat, your foot should hit the ground right on the beat

Clap your hands once between footfalls. After you have mastered placing the clap exactly between footfalls, try clapping twice, or even three times between steps.

Imitate the rhythms of some songs you know using the step-and-clap system you have just practiced.

Tip

If you have trouble with this exercise to improve a sense of rhythm, try doing it with an accomplished musician to start off.

Warning

Don't let your steps and claps become unevenly spaced. Accuracy is crucial to improving a sense of rhythm. Don't choose music or metronome speed that is too fast. You won't have time to learn how to anticipate your steps and claps, which are your keys to a sense of rhythm and beat.

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