There’s no doubt that musicians have a busy life. Switching from practice sessions to rehearsals and concerts is by no means an easy job. When you immerse yourself in the creative process, it can be very easy to forget about your health. But staying up late and eating fast-food can take a toll on your health and mental well-being. Taking care of your body is vital – especially if you are a performer. As a musician, your body is your instrument. Literally. Performing and touring can be challenging, both physically and emotionally. It requires a lot of energy, and since you’re always on the road, it seems impossible to find some time to rest. If you have the right kit, like a beat machine, you can make performing a bit easier too so that you can finish early and spend time looking after yourself.
However, you should prioritize your well-being– otherwise, your performance will be affected. Besides losing practice time during recovery, you can also develop health issues that might have long-lasting effects. So, for all the musicians out there – remember to take care of yourselves. Staying healthy will benefit your creative process and help you perform at your full potential.
Without further ado, here are our 7 top tips for staying healthy as a musician:
Get enough sleep
We know what you might be thinking – who has time for sleep when there is so much to do? And that’s understandable. Getting enough sleep can be tricky among so many gigs and randomly timed rehearsals. And that’s especially true when you’re touring.
However, prioritizing sleep has various benefits:
- it improves your mood;
- it helps you manage stress and anxiety better;
- it enables you to think clearly throughout the day.
As a performer, your brainpower is imperative for your success. Not getting enough rest makes it more challenging to focus on music. And if you are a singer, you (subconsciously) leave out fundamental details like vocal techniques or posture. Your body is intelligent, so it will most likely give you signs if it needs a break. If you feel weary, make sure to rest. Prioritizing sleep will keep you healthy and lead to improved performance on stage.
Not just singers have to hydrate properly – this is equally important for all musicians. From exercise to extreme temperatures, many factors can influence the amount of water you drink per day. This report says women should drink around 2.7 liters, while for men, the recommended amount is 3.7 liters daily.
Staying hydrated can improve your health in a lot of ways:
- it protects you against illnesses;
- it enhances cognitive thinking;
- it decreases fatigue;
- it prevents headaches;
- it boosts physical performance.
Tiredness and the inability to focus are likely to happen because of dehydration. Thus, keep a water bottle handy and take enough sips throughout the day. Making it a habit might be challenging at first, so consider setting reminders.
You don’t have to run a marathon or anything like that, but getting active is paramount for your health. The amount of exercise might differ depending on your fitness goals, but you should do it for at least 30 minutes per day. Here’s how staying active can benefit you:
- it boosts your energy levels;
- it lowers the risk of illness;
- it enhances memory and brain function;
- it improves sleep;
- it builds healthy muscles, preventing injury;
- it reduces feelings of stress and anxiety, improving your well-being.
It’s up to you what kind of physical activity you engage in. If going to the gym or running is not your thing, you can simply go for a walk. Or you can forget the elevator and take the stairs instead. Make sure to stretch after a long drive and in the morning after you wake up.
Watch out for your diet
We don’t mean going on a diet or following a particular meal plan, but it’s common for musicians to skip meals or eat fast food late. Eating healthy can be challenging when you have such a busy schedule. However, try to eat regularly and include nutritious foods in your diet. These foods will give you energy and enhance your focus. Bananas, strawberries, nuts, yogurt and eggs are just some of the foods that promote energy levels.
Sure, eating healthy might require effort, as you have to prepare your meals in advance, but it’s worth it – we promise! You are more likely to get through your rehearsals successfully when eating this way rather than having a Big Mac.
Keep your ears safe
Here’s the thing: your ears are invaluable. Thus, keeping them safe is crucial. Yes, concerts are fun – we can all agree on that. However, loud music can harm your ears. Hearing loss is a common issue, affecting around 1.5 billion people globally. However, there are some things you can do to prevent it. For instance, music earplugs can help you enjoy your career without worrying about damaging your ears.
They are easy to use, economical and can be particularly helpful for musicians, as they reduce the sound without distorting it. With earplugs, you can prevent aching or ringing in your ears.
Choosing a high-quality hearing protector, like Shush earplugs, will protect your ears from any damage and give you an excellent sound experience.
Take time to rest
This one is imperative. Make sure to take a few days off and relax. When you start an exercise routine, you don’t get the results of your hard work unless you take around two days off every week so that your body can recover. The same is true for playing gigs. You need to take some time to relax – that’s how you prevent burnout.
If you want to succeed as a musician, you have to prioritize your well-being. Take at least one or two days off every week and do other activities like reading, playing video games, watching some movies, or sightseeing. And if you want to spend your day sleeping, that works too.
Look after your mental health
It’s of utmost importance to look after your mental health as a musician. The desire to perform well is natural, but remember to take things step by step. Being ambitious is wonderful – however, pushing yourself too hard will only be detrimental to your mental health.
As a musician, you might link your identity to your creative skills, but don’t let yourself fall into the trap of perfectionism. We know this isn’t the easiest thing to do – especially in a highly competitive industry like music. But do your best not to compare yourself to other artists and evaluate your own performance.
Appreciate your accomplishments – no matter how small. While having goals is fantastic, remember to enjoy your journey as a musician. You might struggle with it at first, but try not to rely solely on the feedback you get from others. You won’t always hear positive things from people, which can negatively impact your well-being if you allow it. Not everyone will like your music, and that’s okay – it doesn’t make your piece less remarkable.