Is A Piano Stool Necessary?

Photo of author
Written By Sarah Barlow

Chief Music Officer

Do You Need A Piano Stool To Play Piano?

Piano stools are not necessary when playing the piano.  Some people are unaware that there is a special seat designed just for pianists, but it has no bearing on the way you make music nor does it affect your music quality. 

However, it does not directly correspond that we should neglect its importance and advantages. Since the primary purpose of a piano stool is for playing the piano, they offer pianists the convenience of both comfort and posture. Although there are some alternative stools we can use for playing the piano, most pianos are packaged with their corresponding piano stool or bench.

How High Should A Piano Stool Be?

Since most pianists and piano teachers teach their students to sit with their elbows aligned with keyboard level whenever in the ready-to-play position. 

The suggested standard stool height is 19.5 inches or 50 centimeters, especially since the standard height of a piano’s keyboard from the floor varies from 27.5 to 30 inches or 70 to 76 centimeters. 

However, the height of a stool still depends on personal preference and body measurement, mainly because most pianists feel comfortable at certain heights. 

How To Choose A Piano Stool

When purchasing a piano stool, you should consider the following factors: comfort, posture, stability, durability, adjustability, and pricing. All of these elements work together to lessen the likelihood of bad posture and stress in the spine muscles, neck, and thighs. 

Playing with stress and poor posture for an extended period of time can result in significant and permanent injuries such as disc and back problems, which is why selecting a piano stool that includes these features will keep you safe from injury.


Comfort is the most vital aspect to consider when choosing a piano stool primarily because it is where you would be sitting throughout your training and playing sessions and may last for a couple of hours. 

Being uncomfortable when playing the piano can negatively affect your performance.


When playing the piano, maintaining proper posture will help you avoid strain. This necessitates a straight back, relaxed arms from the shoulder down, slightly lifted elbows over the keys, and feet firmly placed on the floor where the pedals are reachable. A decent piano stool should be able to assist and help you achieve the proper posture.

Stability And Durability

These two factors are more important than one might realize. Two of the most annoying things you may encounter when playing the piano are hearing squeaky noises and sitting on a wobbly stool. Both these problems are mainly caused by the stool’s design. 

Some high-quality piano stools are made with hydraulic systems which then lead to a more durable and silent effect whenever you are playing. This design helps pianists focus more on their practices and performances without being bothered by squeaking noises.    


When it comes to identifying the suitable piano stool for you, it might be difficult. Regardless, there are a variety of adjustable piano stools on the market. 

Adjustability is an important consideration, particularly when the user is still young. An adjustable stool will make it easier for young users to reach the piano keys and pedals. Furthermore, when the child grows, he or she can modify the stool height based on their measurements and personal preferences, resulting in a much longer period of usage.


Most pianos when purchased already come equipped with their own piano stool. However, rather than the factors described above, the stools mainly focus on aesthetic designs and being in theme with the piano’s design and color. 

Most pianists will purchase a separate piano seat that includes the above-mentioned features for less than or a little more than a hundred dollars on average. High-end piano stools and benches, on the other hand, can cost thousands of dollars and are typically the ones bought by pianists. These high-end stools undoubtedly provide their users with comfort, appropriate posture, stability and durability, as well as adaptability to keep them safe and injury-free. 

If you are limited in the budget, you may opt for a standard piano stool. But if budget isn’t an issue, investing in a high-quality piano stool is a good decision. Remember, investing in your body is always the best investment you can get. 

Are All Piano Stools The Same Height?

No, not all piano stools are the same height. Most piano stools’ height depends on the piano’s keyboard height and not all pianos manufacturers follow the same measurement guideline. 

As mentioned above, the standard stool height is 19.5 inches or 50 centimeters while the standard height of a piano’s keyboard from the floor varies from 27.5 to 30 inches or 70 to 76 centimeters. 

Although there are adjustable piano stools available on the market, there has been no specific universal height given to manufacturers to follow. Therefore, not all piano stools are the same.   

How To Make A Piano Stool?

If you want to make your own piano stool, you can look up the design you want to make on the internet. It lists the specific equipment and materials you will need, as well as the instructions for building the stool. 

It’s essential to keep in mind the significance of taking the pianist’s measurements exactly and have someone assist you when you’re taking the measurements to make it easier.  


  1. Choose a piano stool design online
  2. Gather all needed materials and tools needed for assembling the stool 
  3. Ask someone to help you measure your body measurements 
  4. Simply do a squat-like sitting position imagining that you’re sitting on a stool. It is essential to think and consider these aspects:
    1. Sitting position comfortability
    2. Back is straight
    3. Arms are at the same height or slightly above the keyboard 
    4. Leg height is under no stress
    5. Feet can reach piano pedals
  5. Let your companion list the measurements down on a piece of paper
  6. Follow the instructions listed on the stool plan you’ve searched online

Piano Stool Alternatives

Various problems may lead you to look for alternatives for piano stools. The most common problems with them include:

  1. Lack of padding/foam and some with none at all; very uncomfortable
  2. High-end and comfortable piano stools are usually expensive
  3. Usually, comes in unergonomic designs which normally result in back pain and stress.

However, there is nothing to worry about if the piano you ordered doesn’t come with a stool or if you lack the budget to buy one. Here are some of the alternatives you may use.

Adjustable Musicians Stool With Backrest And Footrest

Although there are a variety of musician stools to choose from, the key features you must look for in the right stool for you includes adjustability, a backrest, and an ergonomic design. These factors ensure that you have your stool is stable and that you are comfortable. 

The footrest is optional, especially since playing the piano requires you to use pedals. However, if you are the type of player who doesn’t heavily use pedals then the footrest will add comfort to your experience. Though, some musicians’ stool footrests are detachable. 

Adjustable Drummer’s Throne/Stool

Similar to the musician’s stool, the drummer’s throne/stool also comes in several variations. Most players who use them as an alternative for piano stools prefer the variation with the backrest. This is mainly due to the comfort it provides especially to the lower back, shoulder, and neck. 

The drummer’s throne/stool compared to piano stools is equipped with big and thick cushions on the seat which offers more comfort for the users. 

Adjustable Desk Chair Without Armrest 

Desk chairs are also a possible alternative for piano stools, especially the ones equipped with adjustable seat height, backrest, and no armrest. The adjustable seat height and backrest contribute to the user’s comfort when playing the piano, while the lack of an armrest allows the user to have a full range of motion. 

The only disadvantage of desk chairs is that the majority of them are equipped with freely rolling wheels which makes them unstable. However, if you do find a desk chair with a rubber footing rather than wheels, then that would surely be a great piano stool alternative.