Your voice is a LIVING thing. Your body is your instrument and you’ve got to take care of it! There are many muscles involved in creating sound, and it’s important to ease them into use like anything else. Think of it like yoga for your voice. Or compare your gorgeous instrument to the body of a pro athlete. We are vocal athletes! You think Steph Curry sits all day and then jumps into a Warriors game? Or Beyonce rolls out of bed straight to her show? Don’t trip. That queen warms UP!
Warmups may not be the highlight of your day, but they are integral to a healthy voice, and here’s how to make them work best:
Customize it for YOU.
We don’t all need the same thing! Everyone’s “perfect” warm-up may be different (and different at different times/stages) – we all have different needs, so you’ll want to customize your warm-up for your unique voice and your specific goals. Here are 3 ways to do just that:
- Balance out your strengths. Love to sing high? Make sure you anchor in your lower register in warm-ups. Spend most of your time belting? Work out that sweet head voice. Get comfortable doing what you don’t normally do in songs. It may sound counterintuitive but I’m a firm believer in a well-rounded voice.
- Go beyond. Warm up beyond what you need in your songs. Both dynamically and with regards to range. If your song goes to an E5, make sure you warm up a good 3-5 steps beyond that.
- Know your genre needs. Singing R&B? Make sure you have a warmup that helps target flexibility for those runs and riffs. Singing Country? Get on some twang exercises. Classical singer? Spend time perfecting that breath and flow. Musical Theatre? Make sure you’ve got exercises that will help you find and bring out your natural vibrato.
Keep it FUN.
- Warm-ups don’t have to be lame y’all! Sure, they can be your average arpeggios and scales, but they can be songs or parts of songs too! Find a piece of music with a dynamic pitch range that serves your warm-up needs, and use that! Throw a straw (or your favorite SOVT) application onto the song you can’t get out of your head and dive in. Shake it up – these shouldn’t feel like a chore; have fun making them quirky and exciting.
- Keep it concise, get in – get out. Most of us don’t need an hour-long warm-up. Did you see our post on frequency vs. length? In those cases, a short 3-5 minute warm-up routine will do!
- Freshen it up with a new perspective. For our Songbirds out there, this might mean asking your vocal coach to give you a new set of exercises. Or perhaps try a month lesson swap with one of our other teachers! And if you’re not a current Songbird student, consider trying a free intro lesson with us or someone in your area to get their spin on an effective warmup for your voice.
So what are you waiting for!? Get singing!
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