Posts Tagged ‘posture’

Gravity and the jaw

July 28, 2009

The jaw is a muscle that actually wants to drop automatically. And if one is relaxed, it would do so. This relaxation of the jaw should be used in singing. Let the jaw drop and pull it up. Most of the time, the jaw should not be pulled down strongly using the side of the throat muscles.

In singing, there are no pull-down muscles of the jaw.   When opening the jaw, it is a pull backward.  Gravity pulls down.

So, to sing well, must use gravity together with pulling backward, so as to maximize relaxation.   This is the same as Alan Greene’s concept of a backward jaw.

Overall posture

July 28, 2009

People’s original, and usually not-properly-aligned, postures are different, and there is no single corrective treatment method.   The following is my posture changes needed, which may apply to many others.

Feet to be properly balancing spine–orthotics if necessary.

Knees somewhat straight.  Excessive bent knees is a clue that the posture is leaning too much.

Hips pushed forward.

Abdomen tighten

Chest expanded and upper chest protruded.

Throat somewhat relaxed.

Upper chest protruded such that the throat and head balance.

Jaw ready to be dropped and not protruded forward.

Face and nostrils relaxed.

advanced posture-effect concepts

July 11, 2009

Nose–less strain on nasal muscles (e.g. effort, strain, disgust).    In addition to singing better, this will make breathing easier.

Eyes–less intense around eye muscles. Result will be better 3D perception and more color intensity. Audience perceive singer as less strained and more relaxed. Also ties into nasal muscles

Principles here are the same–more relaxed the muscles, better physiological results and better singing.

The strained efforts seen frequently on singers can have emotional stage impact, but for better range still, more relaxed face and nose can create higher range sounds.

anger, sorrow and side of throat muscles

June 18, 2009

These side of throat muscles frequently express anger and sorrow; subjects that pop songs frequently deal with. When overly taut, these muscles can be sublimated to sing anger and sorrow well, however, these are the opposite muscles (constrictor muscles in Alan Greene’s terms) when singing happy and many smooth sounds.

When detensing, losing the excessive tension of these side of throat muscles can throw off prior acquired singing skills built up around these. In this way, Alan Greene’s assessment of silence while learning how to sing–otherwise, reinforcing the constrictor muscles, is correct. However, the length of time it takes to detense these constrictor muscles can be months to years; so VocalPosture.com believes it is better to utilize their sublimation while tensed.

In detensing these side of throat muscles, one imagery technique is to think of the chin pulling down, instead of the side throat muscles near the chin pulling down. 

The side of throat muscles tension are particularly difficult to rid.   A trigger point therapy bood mentions that throat trigger points are particularly difficult to rid, if impossible.   VocalPosture.com suggests using yoga cobra with also another (don’t know name), which looks like a cobra in reverse, with the front toward the ceiling and upper arm with elbow base supporting the upper chest.

Chen Sun

www.WebAndNet.com

www.WebBIZcard.com

sitting and airplane seats

June 15, 2009

Airline seats are difficult for proper posture.   Use flight pillows for lumbar support. Exercise straightening throat in spare time.

Challenge of tan tien

June 14, 2009

Having posture utilizing tan tien is challenging. The body’s prior habitual tension deter this. Downcast head and sunken shoulders encourage hips to move backside. The taut myofascia and chronic muscular tension means that deliberate efforts to place tan tien are usually challenging.

Achieving good tan tien should be seen as a continual postural alignment process and removing the bad postural built-up tensions.

When sitting, make sure not to put pressure on the lower back.   Pull it in.

Tan Tien

June 14, 2009

This is a part of the body above the sexual organs, that Chinese thought says is the focus of energy. It is located very close to the source of kundalini energy (Indian thought).

If you’re able to tuck your tan tien proper, your posture will straighten immensely. My initial perception is that this can increase highs because proper posture alignment helps to send the sound up through the sinus cavities.

Tucking in the lower abdomen will also solve the lower backache problems (because less continual tension on lower back muscles and ligaments–continual tension is usually the source of lower backaches), prostatitis pain (as explained, much of the pain of prostatitis is from the muscles surrounding the prostate),  sunken chest, acid reflux, excessive saliva while singing).

Excess saliva and singing

June 13, 2009

A question was asked that a singing student has excessive saliva that interrupts her singing. How can this be solved?

Are you using a lot of flourides?    Anticavity mouthwash, flouride gelcams?   These can cause excessive saliva.

Excess saliva is frequently a symptom of acid reflux– saliva is basic and it’s the body’s mechanism to neutralize the upward acidic reflux– to coat the esophagus from acid damage.

To test whether it is acid reflux, try taking a off-the-counter proton inhibitor, such as Prilosec, for two weeks, and see what happens. During this time, also test for other acid reflux symptoms (search web–many of these). If such symptoms and excessive saliva stop, chances are excellent the problem is acid reflux.

If it is acid reflux, proton inhibitors are a relatively safe drug– patients have taken it daily for over 10 years. Also, it is documented that for patients with acid reflux, proton inhibitors can help them sing significantly better (because of reduced effects of acid reflux).   I am not a physician, obviously, so you should see a physician to confirm any self-tests.

Another question was raised are there other remedies than proton inhibitors. Yes there are; I will describe these one day much later.

There is still another solution to excessive saliva. The excessive saliva problem, as it relates to singing, is generally not one of production, but one of drainage. As long as the saliva drains out quickly, the mouth can move freely, without having to swallow to rid of saliva. Recognizing the singing issue as a fast drainage challenge, the answer is simple (yet difficult to continously implement)– straighten the head so that the saliva naturally flows down the esophagus faster. One doesn’t have to swallow if one’s head is properly allowing drainage such that the saliva doesn’t accumulte.

This drainage solution has its challenges. How does one align one’s head straight such that it doesn’t cause strains on throat and mouth muscles, the strain of which will impact singing?

This is what VocalPosture.com attempts to answer–how to create a relaxed posture that enhances singing–and at the same time solve the excess saliva issue.

10-15-12  I’ve straightened my head posture significantly, and saliva drainage definitely is much better (faster).

Chen Sun

www.WebAndNet.com

www.WebBIZcard.com

Lotus flower and restoration of divine voice

May 19, 2009

The lotus flower is symbolic in Buddhist art. The idea is that the lotus rises through the mucky muddy waters, to have a straight stem and then a large, beautiful blooming flower. If you’ve ever seen lotus flowers in bloom in a pond, particularly lotus flowers blooming about 4 feet or higher in air, you’ll understand.

The symbolism is that the flower is inherently beautiful; and that it simply needs to rise up straight through the mucky muddy pond water to express its beauty. Similarly, in VocalPosture’s Zen-derived analogy, the divine voice is in itself beautiful, and the objective of VocalPosture’s singing pedagogy is to allow the divine voice itself to arise from the muddy waters of past emotions, bad habits, tensions, to straighten its spine (stem) such that the beautiful flowering (the singing) can be heard.

Zen (actually Buddhist and Hindu-derived) philosophy enables VocalPosture to make all its speculative claims on how posture is able to create a beautiful blossoming voice.

The significance is that VocalPosture’s view is that most of learning how to sing deals with how to restore-straighten the spine to enable the voice to express its innate beauty. This is a vastly different approach to singing pedogagy than practicing scales to polish-up-create a beautiful voice.

Chen Sun

www.WebAndNet.com

Mouth and voice

May 18, 2009

The idea here, in the mouth region, is again, to release the tension, but after it is released, the objective is rapidly moving, freer mouth structure, not a great resonanting vocal structure (as suggested by Alan Greene). This will sound more natural.