The topic of breathing causes a lot of concern amongst new singers. Which shouldn’t be the case, since we are breathing every momentof our lives!
It seems to have become quite complicated, and singers come to me saying that they need to ‘work on their support’, or learn to ‘singfrom the diaphragm’. I like to keep things simple (because that’s how my brain is!).
As a singer, you just need to be able to breathe in enough air to cover your singing, which is essentially breathing out. And you need tobreathe into your stomach, as breathing from high up in your chest is not effective for singing. That’s it.
If you’ve ever done yoga, the instructor would have directed you to breathe into your stomach so that it expands as you take the air in.Then when you exhale just let your stomach fall back. You can rest your hand on your stomach to check that this is happening. Think ofyour stomach as a balloon that takes in air when you inhale, and deflates again when you breathe out. It should not be a stressful orforced action – remember you are just doing what you normally do, just in a more efficient way.
You can practise this anywhere – waiting for a bus, sitting on the sofa in front of the TV, at your desk at the office. At home, you can trymaking a sound like ‘sss’ or ‘mmm’ on the exhalation, and make them last different lengths by controlling how fast you release the air.
Then try it on songs.
Let me know how you get on, by posting a comment!