Wednesday, November 30, 2011

How To Be A Better Singer

Are good singers are born with natural talents and gifted with a good voice? Well, this is probably what people think. Yes, having a natural talent and a good voice is important to good singing but in reality it is actually a whole lot more than that.

Unknown to most people, singing is really very technical and complex if you want to know how the singing mechanism works. For example, it requires the correct use of your breathing apparatus, the creation of vibrations in your resonance mechanism, the proper use of the right singing muscles, keeping good timing and rhythm, crisp diction, phrasing of the lyrics and planning the dynamics of the songs amongst many other things.

Natural good singers without any training are using some of the right singing methods such as singing from the diaphragm and using the right singing muscles to have a wide vocal range without them even knowing it. So don't you think that since they have some natural talent, they will be even much better singers if they take good formal singing lessons?

It is a fact that even the best singers take formal singing lessons. Why do they need to if they are already such good singers? This is because they know that they can improve further and hone their craft to become even better.

An important contribution to a good singing voice is the usage of the correct breathing technique. Breathing in the right way can enhance the tonal quality of your voice, widens your vocal range, enables you to hold the notes longer and to project your voice better. The right breathing technique is commonly known as "breathing from the diaphragm".

We were all born with this natural breathing technique and that is why babies can wail and project their voices so well. However through the passage of time, most of us lost this natural ability to breathe correctly.

Therefore to get back our ability to breathe correctly for singing, we have to un-learn our wrong breathing habits and be trained to breathe naturally again using the right breathing and vocal exercises.

Your diaphragm is a muscle which your lungs rest on and it extends across the bottom of your ribcage. When you are breathing in, your diaphragm should contract and your tummy, the sides of your abdomen and your back should expand as your lungs receive the air. As you are breathing out, your diaphragm should relax and those body parts mentioned earlier should go back to its natural relaxed positions.

Never raise your shoulders when breathing as this movement will constrict the muscles around your vocal cords causing your voice to sound tight and tensed. It also restricts your vocal range when you do this.

There are also breathing and vocal exercises that can train you to moderate the air flow you are taking in and letting out when you are singing. The more you practice with the exercises, the more comfortable it will be for you and the good breathing techniques will soon be a part of your natural breathing habit.

Maintaining a good posture can also help you to breathe correctly. A good singing posture is standing or sitting upright but relaxed. Make sure that you do not slouch as slouching will put your singing muscles out of sync.

If you are standing, do not lock your knees tightly as this will tense up your muscles. Simply place your feet slightly and comfortably apart with one foot slightly in front of the other. The whole idea is to be relaxed and comfortable.

If you are seated, sit on the edge of the chair rather than sitting back as sitting at the edge helps to keep your body in an upright position so that you can use your singing muscles more efficiently and making your breathing more natural.

Using the right breathing technique and maintaining a good posture are just two of the many qualities of being a good singer and having a good vocal quality. If you want to be a better singer, then you must master the many elements of singing by practicing with the correct vocal exercises.

The author of this article Chris Chew is a music consultant at . He is also a health and fitness coach at

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