Judy Rodman - All Things Vocal Blog

Training & insights for stage and studio singers, speakers, vocal coaches and producers from professional vocal coach and author of "Power, Path & Performance" vocal training method. Download All Things Vocal podcast on your fav app!

Sunday, April 8, 2012

Voices with Breathing Problems? Check These Areas

Breath is the power source for the voice. Not having enough breath or not having control of breath for singing or speaking can cause all kinds of vocal problems, including:
  1. running out of breath (can't finish phrases well)
  2. not having enough volume (weak, quiet voice)
  3. strained or fatigued voice (from overblowing cords and/or tightening throat)
  4. lack of vocal control  (causing problems with pitch, rhythm, tone, vocal licks, volume intensity, and more)
  5. numbness of performance (from too much worry/focus on breath)
For breathing problems it's best to get to the cause(s) to find the breathing technique(s) that cure your issues. If you have organic lung damage, allergies or other medical condition, by all means see a doctor. But check this list out and you may be surprised at how much better your breath can get, pretty much immediately:
  • Check your upper spine...  
Is it too curved, collapsing your ribcage? Sit or stand taller which should straighten the curve out... but don't stiffen, stay flexible in your spine.
  • Check your hands and arms...
Have they become 'rib anchors'? Try using your hands to communicate... they will help keep your ribcage open, which is the prime fix for breath issues.
  • Check your head
Is it balanced over your tailbone? Try moving it back until it is balanced over tailbone or heel instead of the balls of your feet.
  • Check your knees 
Are they locked? Unlock them so you can have use of your legs for power.
  • Check your belly
Is it tight? Let go there... the belly should be able to naturally move open and then tighten low is such a way the the bottom of the ribcage stays wide.
  • Check your energy
Everything that goes into energy will affect your breathing (sleep, nutrition, physical exersize, etc.)
  •  Check your breathing techniques
Especially when it comes to balancing breath support and breath control, vocal training can really improve your breathing for speaking and singing. Hit me up for a lesson (online), or buy my Power, Path and Performance vocal training course and conquer your breath problems once and for all.

Labels: , , , , ,


  • At April 16, 2012 at 8:42 AM , Anonymous James Hubbard, M.D., M.P.H. said...

    Judy, you always give such good advice. Love your posts.

    May I add, don't smoke, even a little. And stay away from the second hand stuff as much as you can.

  • At April 16, 2012 at 11:46 AM , Anonymous Judy Rodman said...

    You are SO very right, Dr. Hubbard. It matters- one can never sing to the best of which they are capable if they smoke. It of course affects not only the breathing but also the health of the larynx. This fact alone can help folks dedicated to vocal excellence quit. Thank you for the reminder!


Post a Comment

Subscribe to Post Comments [Atom]