This may sound strange, but as a dance teacher have you ever thought about taking up singing voice training?
If you are a teacher, your voice is a tool that you cannot do without, and unfortunately, just as the muscles in your body need to be trained to stay in peak condition, so do your vocal cords.
Many teachers, and in particular dance teachers tend to use their voices too much and also in the wrong way. Screaming over the music all day is not going to do your voice any favors, and you may discover that as you get older your voice will become weaker and sometimes even non-existent. This is exactly what happened to me.
Singing Voice Training For Dance Teachers
Did you know that classical singers are trained to sing loudly without straining their voices? They simply learn how to place their voices correctly, so instead of talking through the back of your throat, you have a feeling of your voice coming from a place behind your nose. Placing the sound vibrations correctly enables you to speak or sing louder without any stress on the vocal cords.
I started singing lessons a little over two years ago. Not only am I enjoying the lessons, but I am developing good habits that I can transfer to the classroom, and my voice is definitely getting stronger and lasting longer than it used to. I have also found that I have not had a throat issue for absolute ages, and I used to get laryngitis and infections quite often.
So What Is Vocal Training?
Vocal training is the practice of training your vocal cords and learning breath control to improve the quality, range, and stamina of your singing voice.
Voice training combines vocal exercises and warm-ups geared to enhance the sound of your singing voice while preventing vocal injury and strain.
Vocal training helps condition and strengthen the vocal cords, creating greater sounding pitch and better control. This helps singers and people who use their voices like teachers or public speakers.
What Are The Benefits of Singing Voice Training?
If you are interested in improving your singing voice or your talking voice, singing voice training will benefit you.
Some of the benefits include:
A Better Sounding Voice
Singing voice training helps to coordinate your larynx muscles, which helps even out your vocal tone and condition your throat muscles which improve the way your voice sounds. No more croaking at your class.
Better Vocal Control
By training your voice you can potentially expand the range of your voice and will then be able to use different vocal techniques on command.
Increased Voice Stamina
If you misuse your vocal cords, you will damage them over time. Conditioning them can help to increase your vocal stamina. The more your train your voice, the longer you will be able to use it without straining it. Similar to getting fit. The fitter you are, the longer you can be active.
How Does One Go About Singing Voice Training?
A good vocal warmup is essential to prepare your voice for singing, or even public speaking. Like dancing, you need to warm up the voice before singing to prevent injury and ensure you get the best vocal sound.
You can either use a piano or music app to practice by matching the pitch as you do your vocal scales. Breathing and mouth work is also important here. You can practice the vowel sounds and watch the shape of your mouth with each of these letters. Work on keeping your face as relaxed as possible while you project your voice.
Make sure to work within your vocal range as much as possible. Finding your vocal range will help you determine what kinds of songs you will be able to sing comfortably without straining your voice.
The different types of vocal ranges are soprano, alto, tenor, baritone, and bass, which is the lowest type of voice.
Work On Breath Control
There are many breathing exercises that singers do to help with breath control, including diaphragmatic breathing which focus on breathing through the diaphragm. The proper use of breath control helps a singer control the vibration of their vocal folds and expand their lung capacity.
Enunciate And Sing With Emotion
Your singing will only be enhanced if you can sing with emotion and watch how you sing your words. Your audience should be able to hear what you are singing about as well as feel the music through your emotions, and this takes a lot of extra time and practice if you want to perform in front of people and connect with them.
Record Your Voice
If you record your voice, you can play it back to yourself and listen to your tone, cadence, and pitch. You may also surprise yourself, as most people feel they sound better than they think they did. Compare yourself to the original recording and try and make your piece unique, not an exact replica.
Project your voice with confidence, accepting the fact that you may sing poorly at first. All good singing does take a lot of practice but believing in yourself is the first step.
How Can I Get Singing Training?
Whether you want to improve the way in which you use your voice or become a singer, it is essential to get some good training. If you can’t do it live or on zoom as I do there are luckily some great courses available online. However, these cannot fully take the place of the real deal.
Here is a great option for those of you who would like to go the online route.
This is Melanie Alexander and she has developed an online singing program that you can purchase for a once-off fee.
She was a member of the Australian band Girlfriend and has had some hit singles under her belt.
She will teach you how to use your vocal cords properly so that you can get your best-sounding voice. Anyone can learn to sing if they are willing to put in the practice.
She has developed a system of ‘vocal calisthenics’ which with fifteen minutes of practice a day will transform your voice.
The course consists of 28 lessons where you can learn about understanding your voice, breathing techniques, types of songs that suit your voice and tone, and more.
Listen, sing, and watch your progress grow as you work through the Interactive audio sections:
– Getting Started as a Singer
– Vocal Technique
– The Technical Stuff
– Singing Style
– Learn Entire Songs
– Your Future as a Singer
The course also includes audio tracks so you can practice what you learn including:
– Vocal Warmups
– Vocal Strengthening Exercises
– Range Extension Exercises
– Interval Training for Singers
They have even included three original songs for you to learn.
Other bonuses include a recording studio app and a metronome, as well as workbooks for beginners and more advanced singers. I also love the included ebook to explain the basics of reading music, which every singer (and dance teacher) needs.
I use this online singing program and app to help strengthen my voice as well as the once-a-week lessons I receive from my coach. I love the app as you have the exercises to use on the go, and they are an excellent warm-up before you start to teach.
Try it out, you have nothing to lose and if you are not happy there is a money-back guarantee.
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