Breathing Techniques, Tips and Tricks for Professional Singers
If you know anything about singing then you know breathing is extremely important. Singing is all about breathing. There are other mechanisms that come with singing. There’s the voice itself, pitch and mouth placement. However, at the root of all those factors is your breathing. How you breathe when you sing affects your pitch, quality of your voice and even how you position your mouth when singing. With having to rely on your breathing for so many things when singing it may seem impossible, or extremely hard to do. One may wonder who in the world am I suppose to do that. For many that admire singers may say “how do professional singers do that and sing so well?” The key to breathing properly when singing and using your breath to support so many things comes from having a technique. No matter how good or effortlessly the an amazing singer sounds when singing, he or she has a breathing technique. Here are 7 great breathing techniques and tips for professional singers.
1) Practicing Standard Breathing Technique
The best way to master your breathing the way professional singers do it is to simply practice the standard breathing technique for singers. The way to practice the proper breathing technique singers are suppose to use is to 1st know exactly what the technique is. When singing as you inhale you’re suppose to fill your lungs with airs. This should make your stomach fat and full of it. Then as you exhale and breathe the air out your stomach should gradually be getting flatter. Once all the air is gone you repeat this process. The process should go on the entire time you’re singing. Once you master this breathing technique you should never run out of air when singing. The best way to master this technique like many famous singers have done is to practice it even when you’re not singing. Everyday you should take 10-15 minutes to simply practice this breathing technique. This will make the technique more easier for you to do. You won’t only have to worry about doing the technique when you sing. You’ll become one with the technique and master it. It’ll become 2nd nature to you. Mastering this breathing technique will give you twice as much breath and extend your breath control.
2) Jump Stomach
A breathing technique that’s actually considered more like a trick is jumping your stomach. This may sound weird but it actually works. To do this you start out with the same classic breathing technique for professional singers. Your technique never changes. As you gradually pull your stomach in to release the air when you feel like you’re getting to the end and can’t release anymore, this is where you do a little jump to your stomach as you’re pulling it in. This trick extends your breath a little more and gives you 1-5 more seconds of air. This increase the length and strength of your notes. It allows you to sing longer phrases that you probably never thought you could do. This breathing trick may sound weird or silly in the beginning. But once you get the hang of it, it really does work. Just remember as you’re reaching the end of your phrase and your stomach is being pulled it make it do a jump as you pull it in to help you gain more air.
Some aspiring singers may already know this, professional singers definitely do. But practicing yoga is a great way to increase your lung capacity and develop great breath control. This is because the primary aspect of doing yoga is breathing. Yoga is all about breathing from your diaphragm which is exactly how you breath when singing. Yoga also teaches you how to remain calm. It teaches you how everything is connected in your body. Yoga also shows you specific positions to help certain parts of your body. For instance, there are yoga positions that are designed directly for the voice. Once you get in the habit of practicing yoga it’ll make your breathing and breath control much easier and smoother. It’ll become 2nd nature to your body. Below are some very good yoga videos that focus on breathing and diaphragm support when singing.
- Yoga for Singer – https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=MrX07lObcOI
- Yoga for Singers Series, Part 1 – https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=e0rg1mDJUpM
- Singing Tip: Improve Your Singing With a Simply Yoga Pose – https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=04HuSTINO8s
- Health and Fitness: Diaphragmatic Breathing Exercises – https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Y4pUerloSCk
4) Singing and Running
Singing and running/jogging at the same time is an amazing way to develop great breath control. It’s actually become 1 of the most common breathing techniques. This technique is great for professional singers who are entertainers and desire to sing and dance at the same time. It gets your body use to moving around while singing at the same time. It increase your lung capacity. It helps you build great breath control and it keeps your body in shape by default. Some very successful singers have actually done this technique and some still do it today. Singing and running at the same time was a training technique practiced by Destiny’s Child and most of P.Diddy artists. Every artist that came through P. Diddy’s training camp had to run miles and miles while singing at the same time. It may seem hard and extreme initially but it truly works. The results are proven in the artists that have practiced this breathing technique.
5) Lip Trills
Another great breathing technique that many professional singers practice are lip trills. Lip trills are great vocal warm-ups that increases your breath control and allows the singer to breath with his or her stomach. If you’re not familiar with lip trills that are basically voice exercises where you roll your lips. But you have to roll your lips on a particular key or note. As you’re performing your lip trills you should be doing the same breathing technique you would do as you sing. These lip trills help with many things involving your voice. They help to bring your voice forward. They help to increase your air flow and lung capacity, which allows you to hold longer notes. Of course, they help with mastering your breathing technique. If you’re not familiar with what lip trills look like here’s a video displaying how to perform this vocal exercise.
How to warm up with a lip trill – https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=kyFdwHrMV6o
6) Slower, Deeper Breaths
Simply taking slower, deeper breaths increase your air flow and lung capacity. A lot of people have this misconception that in order to keep up with your breathing when singing you have to do it fast. However, you should actually take slower, deeper breaths. This allows you to get more air in your lungs. It also allows you to sing longer phrases, which means you don’t have to take another breath as soon. In order to perform this breathing technique you must 1st master simply breathing the correct way when singing. Don’t try to master taking slower, deeper breaths right away. It’ll end up being counter productive.
7) Good Health
As quiet as it’s kept just having good health and maintaining an overall healthy body is a great way to help your breathing. A person who is more active, does cardio and yoga on a daily basis will automatically have great breath control. He or she will be able to hold their breath longer. They won’t run out of breath as quick. It’ll also be easier for them to get their body in tune with this breathing technique. There are certain health issues that may seem minor but can impact your breathing in a negative way. For example, if a person has indigestion this can affect the quality of their breathing technique. Other health issues that can negatively impact your breathing technique as a singer are: thyroid issues, stomach bloating, hernia, acid reflux and many more. To counter these health issues, remain all around healthy and perfect your breathing technique as a singer here are some activities you can do.
- Bike riding
- Running/ Jogging
- Cardio exercises
- Kick Boxing
- Martial Arts
These 7 powerful tips and tricks to increase your breathing techniques aren’t the only options available. There are plenty of ways to increase your breath control. The most important thing to remember isn’t how many techniques you practice, but how often you practice them. The key to mastering anything isn’t in cramming a bunch of mechanisms together. The key is in how often you incorporate it in your daily routine and your repetition.