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Benefits of Being in the Marching Band

Updated on October 11, 2011

I was never in the marching band in high school. Not that I wouldn't have liked it, I just had no talent in that area. My husband was a drummer in the band. Our son has been in the band since fifth grade. He's now a sophomore and this is his second year in the high school marching band, playing the alto saxophone.

I have read about and observed firsthand that there are numerous benefits to being a part of the high school band.

Self-discipline ~ What teen doesn't need self-discipline these days? A rigorous practice schedule during band practice at school, after-school rehearsals, a week or two of band camp in the summer before school starts and individual practices require a lot of self-discipline.

Teamwork ~ While it is very important for students to hone their individual skills on their own instruments, the band moves as a unit during their "show." When one person is off, it throws off others and messes up formations. So, the teens must work together, watching others, and maintaining time and step along with their music.

Commitment ~ Band is not a "blow-off" class. It is hard work. It can also be expensive. Being in the marching band requires a commitment on the part of the student to practice, show up for rehearsals and do his best every day. Aside from that, it's a commitment for parents, too, both financially and time-wise.

Pigeon Forge High School Band, Pigeon Forge, Tennessee
Pigeon Forge High School Band, Pigeon Forge, Tennessee

Multiple-skills training ~ Performing in the marching band promotes a lot of skills. Students must have good eye-hand coordination, a sense of rhythm and critical thinking.

Friends for life ~ Being in the band assures students of a group with whom they are familiar. They may not be close friends with everyone but it is a stable circle of students with a common interest.

Competition ~ There is both individual and group competition in band. Individuals may try out for position within their instrument section and become section leader. There are also individual competitions within school districts for students to receive honors. The band competes as a group, as well. What a sense of pride for students when the band scores well in a competition!

Appreciation of the Arts ~ Studies have shown that students who are involved in the arts (music, art) exhibit a higher level of math proficiency than those not involved in the arts. They score better on standardized tests and are more well-rounded academically.

These skills are all beneficial for teens and can be used to succeed later in life.

Were (are) you involved with the band in high school (or a member of your family)?

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If you were (are) involved with the band in some way, do you feel it was (is) beneficial?

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