So, you are taking vocal lessons trying your best to improve your singing voice. You are doing your regular vocal drills, day in and day out. Although the consistent and rigorous practice is necessary to improve your singing, you need to ensure that your training routine itself is sufficient.
Experts suggest that any effective training method combines repetition with variety. While repetition is important to establish new habits and muscle memory, variety is important to keep the brain and the muscles challenged, so that they remain responsive, adaptable and performing at their optimum.
Your Voice Is a Complex Mechanism
Within your entire vocal apparatus, there are many different muscles and muscle groups, which each have their way of working and which each, serve a distinct function to produce the variety of tones, pitches, intonations and any other sounds your voice may make.
These parts also need to be strategically coordinated with each other to produce the sounds you want, so developing this coordination is crucial.
It is important to note that the muscles involved in singing and speaking serve other critical life functions, such as breathing and swallowing. They also cannot develop at the same rate. The skeletal muscles of the lungs can gain muscle mass and increase in strength far more so than those of the vocal chords and larynx.
With vocal training, it is also imperative that you work for the different mini muscles groups, within your entire vocal apparatus in a variety of ways to keep them in shape and performing well as well as responsive to change. You also need to know which muscles can and should be exercised and with which ones you need to be more careful.
Here are some examples of how you can add an element of surprise to your vocal workout routine to help to keep it super-effective.
- When you are performing your vocal drills, try to go up your range by a semitone with each repetition within the set, until you have reached the highest note that your vocal range will allow. Continue this moving down your range in the next set. However, be careful not to venture too far out of your vocal range if you are not ready as this can cause strain on your vocal chords and you do not want practice to damage your voice!
- Do not do too much of the same exercise every day. There are many different exercises, which are designed to achieve the same function. It is a good idea to obtain a variety of exercises, which work the same muscles groups and skill set.
This way you are developing your muscles and skill, but the variation in activity will keep your muscles and your brain alert and prevent them from becoming immune to the exercise too quickly.
Sing In Different Situations
Along with your technical vocal training, it is an excellent idea to sing in a variety of situations. Get out of your comfort zone and get yourself out there. Sing in front of an audience, be it karaoke, with your community choir, at open mic night at your local restaurant or your local pub –even if it is just a chorus.
You will be surprised at how your voice may respond to nerves and different surroundings.
You might also like to read: Tips For Recording In Improvised Locations
An effective singing training routine is holistic. To be a great singer, you have to develop yourself: physically, mentally and psychologically.
Remember, challenging yourself and being open to constant change when needed is a sure-fire way to improve yourself, not just as a singer!
Also read: How To Prepare For a Great Vocal Session