Relaxed singing is everyone’s goal for a qualitative singing of the enthusiastic individual. Only a relaxed singing body can perform a perfect beauty of the inner message which expresses the singer with a wonderful developed, relieved, open and fresh human voice. Therefor it is important to do some relaxing exercises to control the body before starting to sing and they are a component for preparing to work. Shoulders, lungs, neck and jaws should be totally relieved, whereas the abdominal part should function actively and full on stable feet.
You can imagine your body for singing as an atmosphere, the activity in the part of the abdomen is a shuttle. Intense overcoming of the Earth’s gravitation is awaiting all until it does not get rid of gravitation and can float in orbit. Relaxed singing requires a similar body preparation. It is about the work from the diaphragm to the ground and at the same time for a moment of relaxed singing over the shoulder area. To relax muscles, tendons and tissue in an appropriate way they have to be stretched first…
Stretching the whole singing body
Stand in an upright position on your toes and alternating in vertical direction the left and right hand stretch, just as picking fruit from a high tree. While doing this you can walk around in the room.
After repeating a few times stand slightly astride, fold your hands above the head and stretch them out in vertical direction. When exhaling turn to left when inhaling stand upright. At the next exhale turn to the other side and when inhaling stand upright again.
At both exercises stretch the whole body, particularly the chest at the side. At the same time you create the feeling of an extended spine.
Stretching the neck
Stand in an upright position, put the linked hands on your neck then push the head in a slightly bow, whereas touch the chest with your chin. Moving the head in both directions stroke your chest with the jaw. After some replicates the head returns to the starting point and relaxes with a calm exhale.
Open your mouth slowly and relaxed and recline the head in direction of the back. Repeat the exercise many times whereas return the head to its natural position. Try to relax as much as possible.
Stretching the face (mimic).
Blink alternately and intense with your left and right eye. There the facial muscles are stretched.
Yawn a few times intensively.
Stretching the whole shoulder region
Slouch the shoulders and pull back and at the same time try to get the shoulder blade as close as possible. So you stretch the vocal body in the part of the chest. After that cross your arms and push the shoulders forward and so also the back is stretched.
Stretching the back
With an upright position of the back and a slightly step astride bow to the floor and pass the whole bodyweight into the widely open hands. With alternately crossing arms swing in front of the body like a guillotine. With this exercise the back part of the vocal body, relaxes the shoulder region and rises the blood flow to the brain where you can strengthen the adequate concentration…
Singing exercise – introduction into the work
Before starting every single exercise it is recommended to have a short talk where the singer is offered the opportunity to express something special with words or gestures. The act serves for the optimization of the atmosphere, because the problems of a “hard” week reflect less intense in the further process.
Relaxing the whole singing body
Hit slightly at the soft tissues and muscles with the clenched hand. Let’s start patting the abdomen, continue to the ribs and go to the shoulder from there to the inner part of the hand to the palm. Return to the outer side of the neck and then repeat the exercise with the other hand on the opposite side. Continue tapping the legs and finish on the back, hit the outer part of the palm from the shoulder blade to the lower back of the spine. Take enough time for the exercise because when you take it seriously the body will be more than thankful. Go to the next exercise without interruption.
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It will also help to relax if you jump up and down slightly with the feeling of a heavy and limp body (in combination shaking off the hands). The exercise can also be useful as a basic intervention grasp at that time when there is not enough time left for precise relaxed singing.
Relaxed singing requires softness in the part of the head and neck.
When the body is stretched and relaxed completely it is the right time to focus on softening the head, neck, shoulders and jaws.
Imagine that the head is a flower on a very tiny stem that swings in the wind almost weightlessly in all directions. The purpose of this exercise is not to stretch but reaching that state where the feeling of controlled and stiff neck totally disappears.
A slightly shoulder circular motion is followed by deep breathing. The shoulders should circular in extending lines. So the body will be supported totally which is very important for relaxed singing.
Relaxing the jaws
Relax the lower jaw as much as possible to that limit where you still do not feel the pressure in the facial joint below the ears. The chin should not move forward or backwards. For a better feeling you can help yourself and put the hands to the joint where the upper and the lower joint have contact. When opening the jaws you have to be careful that the joint does not bend into the face. The exercise requires a constant repeating because the vocal body often hardens just in the area of the chin. The chin for a correct relaxed singing does not play an active role but in the sense of softness we aim to its passivity. Vowels and consonants are appropriate formed only with the amount of directed air, pressing the teeth and exaggerating in facial expression is left for other art movements.
Relaxing the head, neck and jaws is simultaneously finished with all three relaxing moments which are intensified with steady and relaxed breathing. Additionally, you can step on your toes and slightly swing which will give you an extra relaxation for the whole body.
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Did you find any useful advice for yourself in the note that is about relaxed singing?