Singers are vocal athletes, and must approach their training with the same mentality.
Your voice is a muscle, so if you’re going to use it for a length of time, you have to develop stamina. Think of a long distance runner – if you wanted to run 1500 meters, you’re not going to start with it, right? You would start with shorter distances, with intermittent running/walking, gradually increasing your distance and speed. It would be a step-by-step improvement – and the same applies to your singing voice.
There are two main reasons why your voice is fatiguing:
1. Not doing scales – if you are not doing scales, I strongly recommend that you start with short bursts (10 or 15 minutes) at least 5 to 6 days a week, gradually increasing both length and intensity of practice. The more you level up – the more vocal stamina you develop. Practice regularly!
Now, if you are generally happy, but are lacking stamina in specific parts of your voice – do scales for those particular parts. If your voice is lacking stamina up higher – warm up well, and do a bunch of higher scales; then try higher songs. The same with falsetto, or riff and runs, or low chest voice… It works for all registers, in all genres of singing!
2. Lack of singing technique – meaning, you are forcing your voice to do the things it is not build to do, or using wrong groups of muscles. Bad technique can be a result of two things:
· Singing in key that is not suitable for your voice – the song might be too high, or too low for your voice. Tim Foust (bass) would never try to sing Ed Sheeran’s songs (tenor) in the same keys – and so shouldn’t you! Be mindful of key you are choosing for your songs.
· Harmful habits and practices – so many! You may lack diaphragmatic support, or putting a lot of pressure underneath your vocal folds. Your voice should do the work, but you might be pushing down with your throat and your neck to get the sound out, or trying to squeeze it up by using your shoulders and outer laryngeal muscles. Your posture may not be optimal, or your articulation may needs\ improvement. There are a lot of bad singing habits we develop unconsciously, and you should be aware of how your body works, and what it does to your singing voice.
A good technique is very important, and it starts with proper breathing. Breathing starts with your diaphragm, which does all your heavy work as a singer. Your diaphragm is a pump that suck the air into your lungs, and is also your power pedal – in coordination with other core muscles. Your neck should remain very relaxed, and your mouth should be opening – often more than you feel you need to! – so that your voice just flows out.
If you think you may have some technique issues, I highly recommend that you get a good vocal coach. We have our online singing lessons, and great teachers here in Melbourne, Australia, who work with all skill levels in all genres, and are successfully solving other singers’ problems and helping them reach their full potential.
I hope that this has helped you out, and if you want to learn more about your voice – please contact us via any of the social media channels listed below. If we pick one of your questions for a video response, YOU WILL WIN A FREE LESSON with one of our fantastic teachers!
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THE VOICE TRAINING SPECIALIST SINCE 1993