Description: You start becoming a great singer by being a good singer. This means putting in equal amounts of practice and rest as well as making certain lifestyle changes to maintain a healthy body. Your singing voice will always be healthy if you take care of it as well. Read on to find out how certain tips and techniques can help improve the way you sing and give an excellent performance every time.
A singer does not become a sensation overnight. It takes years of practice before a singer can successfully perform to an applauding audience. It really all boils down to learning how to train your voice because without proper training, your voice will be unable to reach its maximum potential. This training is included in singing lessons. Even professional singers continue to take singing lessons for new techniques.
Maintaining Hydration of Your Vocal Cords
- 1 Maintaining Hydration of Your Vocal Cords
- 2 The Product of Good Singing Technique
- 3 How to Start Mastering Your Vocal Range
- 4 How to Sing with Power by Increasing Your Vocal Range
- 5 Removing Strain from Your Voice
- 6 Overcoming Bad Habits to Protect Your Voice
- 7 Other Tips on to Prevent Straining Your Vocal Cords
- 8 Advantages of Online Singing Lessons
- 9 Why Go for Online Vocal Training?
- 10 How to Find Online Singing Lessons
- 11 Top Effective Tips to Train Your Vocal Cords
- 12 Take the High Road
With the proper guidance from a good vocal instructor who will see to it that the aspiring singer learns how to sing better in a correct way, anyone can actually become a singer. Still, there are some things that the novice singer should do on his/her own. Drinking at least eight glasses of water, for instance, will help a singer’s vocal cords to be constantly hydrated.
Systemic hydration is maintaining healthy levels of hydration throughout your body’s tissues. Why is this important? Your voice comes from your larynx or “voice box” that has vocal folds, muscles covered by mucous membrane that needs to be hydrated in order for them to vibrate properly and produce a clear voice. Moreover, hydration should be on a long-term basis.
The Product of Good Singing Technique
Having the skill of creating good tone from vocal lessons can help you tremendously when you sing, regardless of the performer’s gender or the genre from which the song comes from. What is the definition of good vocal tone and how can you acquire it? A singer who is exclusively into classical music will have a different definition of good tone from a singer who is wholly into rock.
If you, however, consider good vocal tone in its pure form, it is simply the product of good singing technique or a set of techniques. The techniques which you utilize can help align your vocal mechanics and make your tone more pleasing to the ear. After you have established this, you can create your own singing style. Simply put, when you have mastered your vocal tone, even a growl while you sing can sound cool.
How to Start Mastering Your Vocal Range
By extending your vocal range, you can sing without straining your vocal cords. You also learn how to improve your vocal range by singing a wider range or selection of songs to keep your performance interesting and keep your audience enthralled. Mastering your vocal range, however, includes learning some basic steps which include the following:
Acquiring good tone requires breathing properly. Yes, there is a correct way to breathing while singing. One of the things that can teach you how to strengthen vocal cords is watching the way babies breathe. Only the stomachs of babies move during the inhalation and exhalation of breath, something which we have forgotten as we became adults and should relearn to become better singers.
Relaxing the Vocal Cords
Proper breathing involves inhaling and exhaling with only minimum movement from the shoulders and chest. Alongside breathing properly, doing regular vocal exercises to improve tone involves relaxing the vocal cords. This means not even attempting to sing notes that are outside of the singer’s natural vocal range. Weak vocal tone and feeble resonance will be the only results delivered by a singer who is tensed.
Those who have dysfunction their vocal cords can try practicing panting to allow them to relax. Additionally, panting can help breathing by increasing the glottic aperture. The glottis works on your breath so it can produce volume and pitch when you sing or talk. The inadequate closure of your glottis during phonation of a song’s lyrics can make for insecure production of a singing voice.
Developing good vocal warm ups can help your vocal cords function at optimal condition whenever they are used. Wearing out the vocal cords may result in permanent damage. Without the proper education that singing lessons provide, it is just too easy for any singer to damage his/her voice in a short time. Singing lessons can help avoid this potential damage from occurring.
Learning From a Vocal Coach
Some people believe singing can be self-taught but it is always better to be under the tutelage and guidance of a voice coach who is well-trained and adequately-experienced for several reasons. A professional vocal instructor will be able to accurately identify your vocal tone’s strengths and weaknesses and play up the former while correcting the latter.
Only a good vocal instructor can teach you how to increase your vocal range safely but powerfully without causing damage to your vocal cords. Additionally, a good vocal instructor can help you sing various types of songs experimentally and monitor your progress when you take on different styles of performing a song. A vocal instructor can help you expand not only your vocal range but your vocal flexibility as well.
Warming Up and Cooling Down the Vocal Cords
Most singers start their development as musicians by doing vocal exercises for beginners. These exercises warm up the voice of the singer before he/she starts to actually sing a song. Doing tongue or lip trills during your shower or while engaging in tasks can facilitate better airflow and help you breathe properly. Do cooing or humming before doing the more complex exercises like vocal scales.
Repeat these simple warm-up exercises to reduce any muscular tension that you may feel in your neck, jaw or shoulders. Perform cool-down vocal cord exercises with similar vocal drills after you have done the actual singing of songs. Just as warm-up exercises prepare your vocal cords for use, these cool-down exercises prepare them to rest and relax.
How to Sing with Power by Increasing Your Vocal Range
Increasing vocal range requires that you use the right amount of breath; less for low notes and more for higher ones. A vocal range can be increased with a strong diaphragm. Bend over and push your stomach out when inhaling while you sing to give your diaphragm a proper warm-up. Practice articulating the lyrics of the song you are singing to help project your voice for everyone present in the audience.
To be able to successfully increase vocal range you should know not only how to improve how your vocal cords perform but to protect them as well. To become a strong vocalist, you need to exercise your vocal cords every day. Besides increasing your vocal range, exercising your vocal cords help them acquire stamina and strength; remember, your vocal cords are a muscle that you need to work out.
Removing Strain from Your Voice
Singers are commonly affected by cysts, granulomas, benign (or non-cancerous) polyps, and nodules (growths that can be likened to calluses except that they develop on the vocal cords) which are all prone to bleed as a result of demanding performances. Bleeding, in turn, may lead to scarring or fibrosis. Scars on the vocal cords leave them soft and less pliable and result in voice hoarseness and cracks.
Given that, you cannot possibly train your vocal cords to be effective unless you keep them healthy meaning, they should never be strained. Straining your vocal cords does not only mean overusing them; there are, in fact, certain kinds of foods and drinks which you must avoid. Alcoholic drinks cause serious damage to the vocal cords over a period of time. Vocal tone and vocal range can both be affected seriously by alcohol.
Like alcohol, coffee can dry out a singer’s throat and tighten the vocal cords to restrict vocal range. Excessive mucus production as a result of consumption of dairy products can significantly affect the sound of your voice especially when they are taken before your performance. Acidic fruit juices – orange, lemon, and pineapple, to name a few — can likewise increase mucus production in the throat.
The tannins in tea cause the dehydration of vocal cords that lead to sore throat or the development of nodules. Drinks that contain aspartame and carbonated beverages increase the amount of air in the stomach that can considerably affect your voice. Moreover, soothing your dry or sore throat should not be done by eating ice which can affect your voice tone because of its exceedingly cold temperature.
Overcoming Bad Habits to Protect Your Voice
Bad habits affect a singer’s voice, too. Sleeping with the air conditioner or a fan directly blowing on your face will dry out your throat. Let the airflow from either appliance circulate throughout your room instead of having it focused on your face. One of the most commonly mentioned vocal tips to prevent voice strain is to get a sufficient amount of sleep and reduce stress.
Like their liquid counterparts, certain foods stress out your vocal cords. These include dairy products such as ice cream, yogurt, cheese, and butter, to name a few, that create phlegm and distort the quality of your voice. Oranges, lemons, grapes, and pineapples, among other acidic fruits, dry out the throat while fried foods, mustard, citrus, onions, peppermint, vinegar, chocolate, and ketchup can trigger heartburn.
Vocal strain can be caused by too little or too much air pressure that comes from improper breathing control and technique; both can cause the external muscles of the larynx to tighten and affect the sound of your voice. Train your vocal cords to shorten as you hit high notes and expand your vocal range. This can zip up your vocal cords and create voice adduction.
If your training is insufficient, you will most probably rely on those external laryngeal muscles when trying to increase your vocal range. This causes extreme tension that result in vocal cords breaking apart in which case the regular voice becomes falsetto. When a singer pushes up his/her larynx and ignores the break, he/she will be shouting instead of singing; when this happens, the vocal cords are strained.
Don’t make a habit of talking loudly or yelling for extended periods causes vocal fatigue immediately. Ironically, whispering can result in straining the voice as well. If you are one of those people who have problems with their speaking voice, go on speech therapy or get singing tutelage from a vocal instructor who fully understands your problems and help you to overcome them.
Other Tips on to Prevent Straining Your Vocal Cords
Coughing and Clearing the Throat
Unless you have the flu or an allergy, avoid coughing and clearing your throat. Coughing can shred your vocal cords so if you know a cough is coming up, fight the infection with organic or all-natural garlic capsules to quell it. Clearing your throat habitually, on the other hand, can harm both the vocal cords and the throat when left untreated. Throat clearing could be an “ahem” to a loud hocking of phlegmy mucus.
According to Clarity Allergy Center’s Dr. Brian Rotskoff, an allergy expert in Chicago, constantly clearing the throat for over three months becomes chronic and alters your voice gradually. Still according to Rotskoff, the throat and vocal cords take repeated abuse when there is constant throat clearing. The inflammation which results from this abuse only reinforces an urge to keep clearing the throat and continue the vicious cycle.
Poor vocal techniques result in glottals which happen when there is a “bang” in an over-closure of the edges of your vocal cords. A glottal occurs on words that begin with vowels. Adding the letter “h” softly at the onset of singing those words is one way to help this condition. Still, a top-rated vocal instructor who has more expertise can teach you better on how to prevent glottals.
Taking Vocal Lessons
Most people think that vocal lessons teach you how to sing, period. On the contrary, they instill discipline to maintain your vocal health so you can sing well all the time. The fact that you can now take singing lessons online makes it all the more convenient for more people to fulfill their goals of becoming professional singers, recording artists or even just singing beautifully for private functions.
There are online vocal lessons for beginners as well as for those who already in the intermediate and advanced levels. Regardless of the level you are in, there is a plethora of online vocal lessons which you can choose from. These lessons can be taken right in the privacy and comfort of your own home or some other location of your choice like your office or the local community center.
Contrary to what critics have said about online singing lessons being ineffective, numerous customer reviews have expressed satisfaction with them. While not all of us are able to sing as good as Michael Bublé or Mariah Carey, practicing does make perfect and can turn average-sounding voices into awesome vocal tones. Some people, however, prefer professional vocal instructors to teach them how to sing.
Advantages of Online Singing Lessons
This method of instruction requires a fat wallet, mainly because you have to pay for each session of singing lesson. Additionally, you will incur other expenses when you take singing lessons from an in-person instructor such as gas money or transportation fare and meals which you will most likely have before or after a singing lesson.
Online singing lessons, on the other hand, have these other advantages:
- Scheduling is hassle-free: you don’t need to go to a vocal instructor and vice versa to take a lesson since you can have one at home or your choice of location.
- Learning is maximized: online singing lessons are one-on-one sessions that you can repeat over and over again until you get it right without any additional expenses such as paying the instructor’s overtime.
- Establishing connections: you can establish connections with other online students, vocal instructors, and accomplished singers if you join the communities that come with signing up for these lessons.
Why Go for Online Vocal Training?
Vocal training conducted online allows you to learn:
- Music terminologies.
- How to sing with piano accompaniment, orchestral instruments, etc.
- Vocal runs.
- How to read as well as access notes.
- Analyze vocal range and maturity.
- Prepare for singing auditions.
- How to place vocal tone in “masque.”
More and more professional vocal instructors are realizing the convenience of developing their own online singing lessons using instructional CDs, DVDs, and other forms of media such as mobile apps and putting these all together as a comprehensive online singing course complete with vocal warm up songs and exercises, scales, and even feedback email and telephone consultations.
How to Find Online Singing Lessons
There are several factors to consider before you sign up for an online singing course. The primary factor you have to consider is the vocal instructor’s credentials that should include musical education, experience, and certifications, to name a few. You should also consider the testimonials and customer reviews that attest to the vocal instructor’s in-depth knowledge of the instruction material and the competence he/she has.
You also need to listen to how the vocal instructor sings to find out whether he/she can deliver what you want to sound like. Additionally, you have to ensure that the online singing course is a fit with your short- and long-term goals. If you aren’t a beginner, for instance, you could skip the basic modules or have them tweaked to suit your particular needs to save time, effort, and money on your part.
Top Effective Tips to Train Your Vocal Cords
Learning how to regulate your laryngeal movements will help you sing better. Sing in the same way that you talk and using the same movements and volume. It also helps to practice singing vowels and moving from one to another to train the vocal cords to transition between various sounds and strengthen them; this will help you in mastering the different notes of difficult songs later on. Here are some more tips:
- Find that one note you are most comfortable singing and hold it for as long as you possibly can. Rest and repeat this process three or four times until you can it for a longer time than you expected.
- Do scales and arpeggios regularly and do each five to ten minutes every day. Repeat the process for an hour. Work on opening and closing the vocal cords correctly by training them to “stay together” while you sing.
- Strengthen your laryngeal. Push up the skin around the lips and breathe out. This trains the inner muscles of your vocal cords and strengthens them to control both your vocal tone and your singing.
- Get sufficient sleep and rest. Your vocal cords, like all the other parts of your body, need rest to regain strength or heal from soreness or dryness as a result of being used in singing.
- Use the inner muscles of your larynx by keeping the throat still when singing to close your vocal cords together to produce excellent vocal tone; it takes time to master this particular technique.
- Doing “tongue rolls” can actually help train your vocal cords to work effectively. Putting the tongue flat down in the mouth and rolling up its sides as you sing can help make your vocal cords become stronger.
- Training your vocal cords to sing various notes that are at the bottom and top of your vocal range helps you to control and manage your breathing while moving from one note to another.
Take the High Road
In preserving the health of your vocal cords, you are also, in fact, training them to work effectively for you to sing well. You can’t do that by yourself. Take the high road and get the help of formal singing lessons. Taking an online singing course does not mean they are not “formal” lessons because they aren’t conducted in a classroom or group setting but they can be as beneficial as lessons given in-person and at a music school.
You may not have the talent for singing but you can learn it just like other skills such as painting or playing a musical instrument. Giving your vocal cords the strength, protection, and care they need involves a variety of vocal techniques you will only be able to learn through singing lessons. The best lessons are those given as one-on-one sessions. If your budget is tight or you want convenience, take online singing lessons.