When it comes to being the best vocal athlete that you can possibly be, figuring out a way to maintain your top-level vocal health is of utmost importance! You need to make sure that you’re at your best for performances or recording sessions. That is why here at TVS, we developed this list of 5 easy vocal health tips for better singing for all ages.
So without further ado, let’s begin!
Whether it’s warming up your voice prior to rehearsal time or having a sip of warm ginger mint herbal tea after putting on a show, developing routines is critical to keeping your singing voice in tip-top shape! This is especially true since not all singers learn the same way.
Like an athlete preparing to run a marathon, it’s important to create a schedule that helps you better your singing. This way, you can spend more time on the things that can actually help improve your voice as opposed to the things that don’t.
Let’s say that you’re a beginner singer who also happens to be a visual learner. If the idea of using diagrams and watching someone use “musical sign language” (such as our very own Robert Lunte) is more helpful to you, then you should dedicate more of your time to utilizing those tactics in.
Routines are designed to help you stay consistent with things like practice time. As such, you can develop muscle memory quicker and improve your singing in a shorter amount of time. Even more so, they can help you figure out as to what kind of singer you are.
Wouldn’t it be boring if every singer in the entire world sounded exactly the same?
Exercise with Purpose
Singing unto itself is a physical activity. As such, exercise and singing are NOT mutually exclusive. While maintaining your vocal health, it’s important to improve both your muscular conditioning and lung capacity. Otherwise, it’d be much harder to perform on stage for more than two hours on end.
If you want to get started on exercising with a purpose, we recommend doing sports such as yoga or cardiovascular activities such as swimming and jogging.
If you’re not exactly an athletic person, then take 20 or 30 minutes a day to walk at a comfortable pace. Trust us, it would make a BIG difference in your musical career.
By the way, for all of you weightlifting fans out there, make sure you’re breathing throughout the entire exercise. Otherwise, you could risk “bracing” and overexerting the vocal folds, which you don’t want!
‘Warm-up’ don’t ‘wear out’
When it comes to being the best vocal athlete that you can possibly be, it’s important that you “warm up” in order to keep your vocal folds as healthy and adept as possible!
Begin your practice by vocalizing with light and easy exercises in your middle register before transitioning into voice exercises (vocalises) that involve your high and low registers. If you want to learn more about what exactly these exercises are, check out The Four Pillars of Singing.
Otherwise, condition for a performance months ahead. Keep track of when and how well you spend your time practicing a particular piece and getting ready for a show!
During the night of a performance, avoid extreme vocal warm-ups and be very careful not to oversing or rush into your extreme top and bottom ranges. After all, your vocal health is definitely your wealth!
As tempting as it may be to continually sing until it hurts, it’s important to give your throat plenty of time to rest and recuperate.
Use vocalises that are light and gentle to cool down after an intense singing session. The easy cool-down will prevent blood from pooling in the blood vessels of the vocal folds. As such, it will prevent tightening, which can prevent you from singing in tune down the road.
Avoid talking for approximately 30 minutes after an intense practice or performance. Most importantly, beware of post-performance receptions! In noisy crowds, you may push the voice to be heard. However, such strained speech can easily damage the vocal folds. So if you need to, use your phone to “text” what you want to say to someone during that time.
Purposefully Rest and Recover
Throat muscles, like all muscles, need plenty of rest in order to replenish nutrients. Whether it’s utilizing an all-natural inhaler or a humidifier, it’s important that you give your throat the proper treatment it needs. Otherwise, the muscles will stop contracting and you will begin to feel fatigued.
The body needs short breaks. As such, no matter how fit a person is, no one can go on contracting a muscle forever. Once you stop singing or talking and thus begin to rest the voice musculature, you start to regain strength and control.
As a singer, your vocal health is just as important as your wealth. You need the rests written into your songs and you need the breaks between songs during a concert to help stave off fatigue.
Hopefully, you find these 5 tips to be very helpful:
- Develop Routines
- Exercise with Purpose
- ‘Warm Up’, Don’t ‘Wear Out’
- Cool Down
- Purposefully Rest and Recover
In the meantime, if there are any other vocal health tips for better singing we should consider adding onto here, let us know in the comments below!