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Marching Band Teaches Life Lessons

"Band geeks" are what they are now, but when they get out into the real world "successful" is what they will be. This is attributed to the many life lessons learned through being in marching band that can contribute to one's success into adulthood. A few of these lessons include academics, multi-tasking, discipline, team work, and respect. Studies have proven that music helps kids academically; and when you put a group of kids on a field marching to the rhythm of one pulse, instruments in hand, while moving at a rapid pace, even more can be gained. While music does keep your mind active while you're sitting down playing an instrument, it is not to the same degree as moving while playing. Imagine having to memorize music and drill and having to keep in step and on tempo with perfect marching technique and keeping in line with everyone else all at the same time. Can you say multi-tasking? Multi-tasking is a skill that can be utilized in many situations which gives marching band kids quite an advantage. Discipline is a necessity in marching band. From having long rehearsals filled with cleaning drills to doing push- ups every time they mess up; if the student didn't have it when they started marching band they most certainly will when they finish. Just playing an instrument without the marching takes discipline on its own. When being a part of a large group of people, team work is key. In marching band there are no substitutions when someone is too tired to keep going. Everybody contributes and everyone is equally as important. When someone messes up, a band member can't be mean about it and lower their spirits; they have to be supportive by telling them what they need to do to improve. If people start yelling at each other it sends negativity throughout the group that could affect the team spirit, which is vital in making the group successful. If the focus gets lost, so could valuable time. This could cost the band points at a competition or cost tenths of points which could be the difference between bringing home a second place trophy or a grand champion trophy. A lot of hard work goes into the production of a marching band show. The members learn the meaning of sacrifice. A huge chunk of summer is consumed with twelve hour practices a day; coupled with the shorter six hour practices; in addition to two hour practices that focus only on the music. All of the hard work pays off if the band goes home with a grand champion trophy which is the grand prize marching bands strive to achieve. Respect is another lesson taught in marching band. When the members have on their uniform they are representing not only their band program, but their school. When in uniform there are rules. The bands respect each other and everyone around them. These skills that the members acquire will not only be very beneficial for them in marching band but in everyday life.