The Basics of How to Sing
You might think that singing isn't something you
learn, just something you do. This may be true, if you don't care about how well you sing or whether or not
you damage your vocal cord.
Perhaps you dream of being a professional singer. Or,
like most people, perhaps you just want to sing in public without embarrassing yourself. Either way, you want
to learn how to sing well. Once you learn how to sing well, you'll have a skill you can use for the rest of
your life. However, maintaining physical fitness is an important, often overlooked, aspect of maximizing how
well you sing. Singing is a physical activity, so you need to eat well and stay on a fitness
You might find this curious if you look at pop
musicians or opera stars. But how many of these stars remain stars well into their golden years? The great
ones may have enough talent to succeed at any fitness level, but the singers with the longest careers are
typically those who have taken good care of their bodies. Of those rock stars that do live the party
lifestyle, a great many don't live long enough for their skills to deteriorate.
If you want to really know how to sing, seek out the
training that only comes from a trained professional. For most skilled professions many years of education
are necessary to maximize performance. There may be those who can succeed without the benefit of professional
training, but they could be better. Fortunately, there are now online courses about how to sing your best
available to you, whether you're a budding star or just wanting to be a better singer.
No matter how you hone your craft, the more you learn
about how to sing, the better you'll get at it. It is important to begin by learning all about the vocal
aspects of your body. If you have a good teacher, you'll begin by learning about proper posture and which
muscles to use to support your breathing. For example, you'll learn why it important to stand upright and
relaxed, while holding your chest up high. You'll let your shoulders hang back and stand with your feet
directly below the shoulders on their respective sides. You'll probably be taken through some exercises you
can do to help you learn to do this better.
There will always be an emphasis on breath support.
This simply refers to using your larger muscles to support your breathing, rather than straining at the
throat. Your midsection should expand as you inhale, with many of the major muscles of your torso sharing the
You can practice your breathing by taking in a full
breath and then breathing out with a hissing sound without letting your midsection shrink. Practicing this
exercise teaches you how to sing with a full support system. This will help protect your vocal cord, while
also providing you with greater tone and endurance.
An important part of producing good sound is to learn
about pitch and tones. The sound coming out of you can be described as resonating from your sinuses, pharynx,
and chest. The higher the notes, the more you'll use the sinus area. The lower your notes, the more you'll
use the chest area.
Of course, for most notes in the middle you'll blend
all of these regions in varying degrees. If you create tone in your pharynx and sinuses at the same time,
you'll make what your voice coach may refer to as a mixed tone or mask resonance.
Mask resonance simply refers to where you feel the
bulk of the vibrations created as you sing. If you want to feel these vibrations now, inhale deeply with good
posture and then slide from a high note to a low note making a “hee” sound. If you pay attention, you'll feel
the vibration traveling down from your mask to your chest as you go lower.
The key to learning how to sing well is taking time
each day to practice. Instead of going for greatness all at once, make strides each day to do or understand
something better than you did the day before.