Preserving a good voice condition during this pandemic is important, so that after this period you can shine on stage again. But what is a good voice condition and how can you train it? Gigstarter figured this out for you!
The way of breathing is very important for the correct use of the voice. There are two ways you can breathe, through your chest and through your belly. Breathing through the chest is not recommended. This way you can't use your entire lung capacity. Also, this way you can't control your breathing.
Your diaphragm is a large strong muscle that attaches to your lungs and ribs. When you breathe through your abdomen, your diaphragm tightens and pushes out your lower ribs, allowing your entire lungs to fill with air. You feel your belly expanding. Don't force it! As you sing, your diaphragm relaxes gradually, letting the air out of your lungs. This way of breathing is called abdominal breathing.
PRO artist Leonie Prater performing
You can control your breathing by using breathing support. You practice this by putting your hands on your flanks while singing. In this way you feel your lower ribs expand when you breathe in properly.
'Use this breathing support to reach higher notes and hold them for a longer time'.
Someone who has mastered breathing support is the experienced singer Leonie Prater. By using her breath support, she easily reaches the highest notes in a song. Leonie can be booked for various events.
The longer you can widen your ribs, the longer the exhalation takes. As a result, you can get longer and higher notes. This probably won't work at the first attempt. To control your breathing, it is important to train your abdominal muscles (around your belly button), back muscles and lumbar muscles. By gaining good breathing support you will get a longer range and you will be able to sing for a longer period of time, without breathing in between. Also because you breathe in a controlled way, you can produce more volume.
Train your breathing
Doing breathing exercises regularly train your diaphragm and increase lung capacity. This allows you to sing with more and more volume and power. Two exercises will follow. In the first exercise you will observe your own breathing. You can do this by lying straight on your back and putting your hands on your belly. Check if you are breathing in the right way as described above.
"Train your breathing on the train or while you're cooking."
A second exercise is to use your breathing support to breathe in and keep this air with you for as long as possible. Your muscles will be stimulated. Train your breathing on the train or while you're cooking! You can breathe in the air, tighten your muscles for a second and then relax your muscles and belly. This is a simple way to train your muscles and controlling your breathing. Also your vocal cords are for a large part muscles that you need to train and maintain.
Drink chamomile tea
Taking care of your voice
It is important to take good care of your voice. Therefore, stop singing immediately if you get a sore throat, to prevent polyps or other damage to your vocal cords. By taking lozenges you will increase saliva production, preventing the larynx from drying out. Drinking sage or chamomile tea (with honey) also does the larynx good. A good hydration, for example by drinking a lot of water, is very important for your voice. The last tip: Go for a walk or run every now and then, so that you get enough oxygen. It's good for your condition and that way you'll also get outside during this time.
Do you challenge yourself to train and take care of your voice this upcoming period? By using the right breathing techniques and testing yourself regularly, your voice will stay in shape and you will be able to pop back on stage after this pandemic!
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