Easiest Woodwind Instrument to Learn

Easiest Woodwind Instrument to Learn

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2 years ago


Easiest woodwind for an older adult to learn?

I've always wished for some musical ability and want to start learning an instrument for fun before I get any older. My only experiences with musical instruments were in school, playing the melody flute in 3rd grade and 6 weeks of piano in the 6th grade. I loved both, but music lessons were out of the question. It's been a lot of years, and the longing is still there.

I'd like to experiment with a woodwind instrument, something lighter weight that wouldn't aggravate some old upper body injuries. Any suggestions? Is there another subreddit more appropriate for this question? Thank you!


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level 1


3 points 2 years ago

I'll go with the obvious answers. If you want to play with others at some point, either clarinet or alto sax are probably your best starting point. If you just want to play for yourself, ocarina is very quick to pick up and light.

level 2


Original Poster2 points 2 years ago

Those aren't obvious to me, so thank you! I didn't know enough to make the distinction around solo vs group, so that's very useful.

level 1


1 point 2 years ago

I don't think it should be so much about ease of play as what you enjoy listening to.

I used to teach saxophone lessons and a lot of my adult students got burnt out because learning a musical instrument was a lot harder than they thought it would be. But I know of a few who truly loved the music and continue to play to this day.

As far as stress on the body, Alto/Soprano saxophone are pretty low stress on the body. My only concern would be is if you have neck pain ever you might need to take short breaks every 15-30 minutes. Your embouchure (mouth position) will take time for your body to adjust so you'll also need to take breaks for that as well.

I'm gonna plug the saxophone though. I love the music associated with the saxophone, it is a very fun/versatile instrument. I think it's pretty easy to get started for the most part. You want to find a good teacher or youtube videos to help you really get the correct embouchure, and not only that but proper breathing is essential (as with any woodwind instrument). Only con is having to deal with reeds but that's not nearly as bad as our double reeded cousins 馃槀

level 2


Original Poster1 point 2 years ago

Thank you for your suggestions & thoughts about this. The loving-the-music aspect of it makes so much sense, and I was more narrowly focused & not thinking of that. I'll go watch some youtube videos & listen to soprano & alto sax music, clarinet, and others. I've got access to a soprano sax, so I can check the weight & effect on my neck, etc., and go from there.

level 3


1 point 2 years ago

Hey sounds good. Send me a PM if you have any questions about it. Saxophone was my first real passion in life and even though I don't teach/play professionally anymore, I enjoy being a help to people whenever I can 馃槉

level 4


Original Poster1 point 2 years ago

What a kind offer — I really appreciate it. :))

level 1


Musician1 point 2 years ago

So I play all of the winds except bassoon. Saxophone is definitely by far the easiest to play, and it's very friendly to an adult amateur who might not have a consistent practice schedule. Get a cheap alto sax — the Yamaha YAS-23 is the obvious choice — and see if you like it.

level 2


Original Poster1 point 2 years ago

I realize I had an assumption that saxophones were somehow more complicated to learn than, say, a clarinet or flute. But I have no info or experience to support that assumption, so I appreciate your perspective based on actual knowledge. :)) Thanks for the specific instrument recommendation, too.

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