Start your day with 10 deep breaths
I had to have an MRI recently (for my knee) and found myself with 50 minutes to do nothing. (This is a rare thing in my extremely hectic life). I couldn’t move for 50 whole minutes. Had no one to talk to, couldn’t surf the web. Nothing. It was kind of stressful at first. What was I going to do with myself for all of that nonconstructive time?
So I began to concentrate on my breathing. Deep, slow, low breaths while I lay there. Since everything was so still around me, I had a lot of time to concentrate on exactly what was happening in every breath. From the first to the tenth breaths I completely opened up my breathing, accessing new, deep muscles and released just by concentrating on releasing and unlocking. And it only took a couple of focused minutes.
Once I found that breath, I was able to access it each time easily. But I had to make a conscious effort to find the breath in the first place. I had been laying there a long while before I began this breathing thing, and my breath the whole time was extremely limited in resonance capacity because I hadn’t alerted the right muscles.
I highly recommend adding this to you daily routine. Do it in the morning before you are officially out of bed: 10 slow deep breaths. Concentrate on opening your back, and having your lower tummy raise naturally by the breath intake. These are not shallow breaths that raise the chest, maybe your first couple will be, but think low release and watch how quickly each breath becomes more engaged and connected to your abdominal wall, lower diaphragm, and back muscles. Once your belly is rising and your ribs are expanding you’ve found your proper breath.
To go further, I have a great set of breathing exercises on my first volume of Voice Lessons To Go Vocalize and Breath. These are extremely thorough and a wonderful work out which I highly recommend beyond the morning breaths to develop stamina, support, and capacity. But, the morning breaths are a great way for a singer to start their day, by making them aware of their breathing mechanism and setting a productive singing mind set.–of course I couldn’t just lay there for 50 minutes…:)
Ariella (temporarily on crutches, but still thinking about healthy singing!!)
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