There are a gazillion different vocal exercises out there you can do. How do you know which ones are best for you? Know what they should and should not do for your voice, and you will be better able to do productive vocal warm ups.
1. They should relax, energize your voice and make it feel good and ready for performance. If an exercise leaves your throat feeling stressed and your voice fatigued, you are doing bad exercises, doing good exercises with bad form or you are doing good vocal routines too long at your level to support good form. Bottom line: If it's a tighten up instead of a warm up... don't do it!
2. They should help you develop more vocal ability by strengthening and coordinating your vocal instrument all through your range. If your vocal exercises are right for you, you should notice steady vocal improvement.
Specifically, the goals of a vocal warm up should be:
- To loosen tightness, numbness and tension in the neck, shoulders, back, soft palate, jaw, tongue.
- To focus tone...engaging the facial mask including eyes, opening the throat and allowing access to all the resonation zones, surfaces and cavities.
- To get your breath support and breath control balanced.
- To focus breathiness into laser beam power.
- To stretch your range and broaden your highs and lows.
- To connect your vocal registers seemlessly and get rid of vocal breaks
- To get your voice mixed, developing a wide, rich middle voice.
- To get you singing with precision of pitch.
- To develop great control of tone color choices and volume intensity.
- To get your vocal confidence high.
- If you are a student of Power, Path and Performance vocal training, to practice the "basic move" of the voice... getting your voice path coming from pelvic floor, lifting above and behind the head, pulling by the word through the mask in a focused beam to the audience.
What about you? Do you use a warm up that makes your voice feel good? Leave a message on the web in "comments" below this post.