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Singing Lesson #2: Prepare Your Body For Maximum Results

Updated: May 20, 2023

Once you learn how to reduce tension when singing, this is the first physical lesson that will contribute to this.

You must learn to align your spine to release the nerves and muscles attached to it.

To breathe diaphragm naturally the spine must be aligned. Without this alignment, diaphragmatic breathing is restricted and will not be natural.

Aligning the spine will lift the rib cage and automatically expands the diaghragm. This allows ease of breathing and puts the rest of the body in position to "support" the voice.

I use the "Alexander Technique", which is widely used by actors, dancers and athletes to prepare their bodies for smooth and/or powerful movement.

And it's very easy to learn and maintain unlike most posture techniques that actually stress the body and cause muscular tension.

Exercise: Stand in front of a mirror so that you can mark the top of your head with something you can see above your head like a book shelf. Pretend you are at the doctor's office where they are measuring your exact height. Make yourself as tall as you can and re-mark what you were looking at in the mirror. You must be absolutely clear on the exact visual measurement as we proceed with the exercise or it won't work.

We are now going to relax the entire body as much as possible without shrinking.

First, the neck. Just move it just a little side to side. If it can move, it's loose. Check your visual mark that you haven't shrunk.

Second, the shoulders. Just lift or circle the shoulders a little. If they can move, they're loose. Check your visual mark that you haven't shrunk.

Third, the stomach and torso. Relax the stomach. This may be hard for most people because we hold the stomachs in to look better (this is counter to diaphragmatic breathing). The twist the torso a little to unlock the back and sides. Check your visual mark that you haven't shrunk.

Fourth, the hips. Do a little hippy movement like a hula. Very little. Don't let the butt stick out. That would be too relaxed. Check your visual mark that you haven't shrunk.

And lastly, the knees. Unlock the knees with a little shake but don't bend them. Check your visual mark that you haven't shrunk.

If you've all this correctly, you should be at the same tall height we started with yet your body is now completely relaxed. If there is any tension anywhere, you must relax it.

In this position, what we've done it aligned your spine.

This allows all the muscle and nerve endings to be free from the compression that occurs between the vertebrae. You'll do any physical task better because your body will be communicating with brain in a highly efficient manner.

Since we are mainly concerned with how this new posture will affect the voice, please sing. You'll notice a different tone and ease of delivery. You'll feel where the voice is supposed to be coming from, which is the stomach/diaphragm area.

And it doesn't matter how long you practice, you should feel wonderful after the session.

You shouldn't feel like collapsing or having to stretch your back from the muscular tension of most posture exercises.

If you have any questions, please leave a comment or start a chat. If you've learned something, please "heart" the blog and become a member. Or just go ahead and try a lesson. Thanks for your time and have a greaaaat day!

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