Vocal Exercises to Improve Singing

  • Fabulous singers are not born talented they hone their skills everyday. The accolades and the awards are just the front of a singing career but what lies behind is hard work in its purest form; long hours spent exercising to achieve the perfect tone, melody, pitch and vocal range. So if you want to break into the professional music scene you will also have to put in the diligent effort and perseverance into practicing vocal exercises every day. Here are some vocal exercises that will produce conspicuous results. It is important that you do not hold yourself back just because you think you were not born a good singer. Anybody can develop extraordinary singing skills by practicing the fundamentals. After all singing is not natural but your voice is also an instrument which can be developed. Singing does not come naturally to the human body so you will have to be patient and let your body get used to singing.

    The exercises mentioned here will not feel natural at first for instance one of the first vocal exercises involves increasing the size of the mouth cavity this can be done by raising the soft palette but when you normally try to do this the body's reflex is to turn on the swallowing muscles and close the throat and while singing you will have to teach your body to turn off this reflex.

    Regardless of the style of singing that you intend to practice if you master the fundamentals you can certainly be a good singer. The fundamental of singing include a good posture, good breathing and proper phonation and the following vocal exercises will help to develop these fundamentals

    Good Posture

    When people think about a good posture for singing they assume that it should be straight and stiff but where singing is concerned an appropriate post should be one that creates space for breathing and the expansion of the lungs and the diaphragm. To get this posture the weight should be centered between the balls and the heads of the feet. It should be the body's natural center. Rock back and forth and let yourself slowly settle into the correct and natural posture.

    Proper Breathing

    You can not possible sing well without you master the proper breathing technique. With correct breathing you can handle any singing issues that you may encounter. If you are breathing correctly it will help to raise the soft palate and stretch the diaphragm.

    Raise The Palate

    Your palate is almost semi circular in shape with the ridge like part behind your upper teeth followed by a hard bony part that lies in the center of your mouth and then further in towards your throat is a fleshy part. This is the soft palate. If you try to hold a yawn you feel this flesh part of your mouth lower and rise. Try sticking your hand between your lips horizontally and breathe. This will raise the soft palate. Stretch the Diaphragm: Close one of the nostrils and take a deep breath you will feel a stretch at the lower part of your lungs. When exhaling use a straw to blow the air out you will feel a resistance at the bottom of the ribs. When you inhale feel the air entering a big space practice by taking a deep breath quickly and with no sound. You should feel the same stretch that you felt when you inhaled through one nostril and exhaled through the straw

    Proper Phonation

    Once you have practiced the vocal exercises to achieve the first two fundamentals you will need to use the techniques in your sounds. So, start by hissing, it should be a nice, long and steady hiss that stretches your diaphragm. Once you can maintain a long hiss turn the hiss into a slur by buzzing your lips. This buzzing should also be long and consistent. If both these sounds are steady you are producing them correctly. Try going back and forth between the hiss and the buzz both of them being consistent. Increase the pace and then open to a vowel sound like 'e' or 'ah'. You should feel the power of your diaphragm while making the sounds with an almost passive and open throat. Singing should be about using the energy in your diaphragm and not about movement in the throat.

    The more you practice the easier it will be and eventually you will start incorporating the techniques without putting in a conscious effort.

    Source by Pamela C Smith

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