10 Tips to Sing Loudly Without Straining Your Voice
Singing loudly can be challenging for singers, but following some simple tips can allow you to do it safely and with more ease.
A loud voice can be very effective, to help emphasize certain parts of a song, or when the singer is not amplified.
However, the major drawback of this is that it can often result in damage to your voice. Strain to your voice not only affects the sound of your singing, it can also sideline you from vocal activity for some time. Repeated strain on your voice can even permanently harm your vocal cords.
When it comes to singing, it’s important to remember that it’s not only your vocal cords that matter. Good singing involves a variety of different parts of your body, including your lungs, your diaphragm, and your chest. Being aware of how sound is produced from your body can help you avoid extra strain to your voice, regardless of if you’re looking to sing louder or just improve your technique.
However, there are also several things you can keep in mind to make sure that when you do get ready to sing loudly, you do it in a way that doesn’t damage and strain your voice.
1. Breathing Exercises
Deep breathing can help improve your lung capacity.
Practicing breathing exercises daily can help you gain better control over your voice.
How you breathe controls not only the volume of your singing but also the quality and partially the pitch and tone.
Proper breathing exercises will help ensure that you’re breathing correctly, from the diaphragm. This ensures that you’re taking advantage of your full lung volume, instead of just that of your upper lungs. You can easily find effective techniques and exercises online.
2. Vocal/Singing Exercises
Vocal exercises like arpeggios can help you stretch out your voice muscles and train your pitching ability.
Unlike scales, they also help you use different vowel sounds regularly and explore your vocal range.
These types of exercises can help your voice warm-up before performances. While you may be able to reach the volume and pitch you’re looking for without warming up, there’s a far higher chance it will leave your voice sore than if you had given your muscles are chance to get ready with vocal exercises. For best results, keeping up a daily routine of such exercises can be far more effective than doing so only before performances.
3. Work on Your Chest Voice
Your head voice is when you sing richer, balanced tones on the higher notes of your vocal range, while your chest voice is when you sing lower, thicker, and warmer notes.
The chest voice tends to reflect how you sound when speaking, and also tends to be the more comfortable range for singers.
The chest voice is the register you should practice first. Building your volume through your chest voice is far easier than doing so via your head voice. Think of it like learning to walk before you can run – if you start by trying to build up your head voice volume first, it is far more likely that you’ll damage or strain your voice.
4. Stay Hydrated
Make sure you always have water on hand, regardless of if you’re practicing or performing. It’s easy to get dehydrated when you’re singing, and the drier that your vocal cords are, the more likely it is that they get damaged.
Dry vocal cords make it easy to damage your voice.
Adding a high singing volume to the mix only compounds the likelihood that you will strain or damage your voice.
5. Look Straight Ahead
It’s natural for singers to tilt their heads back when singing, or look upwards especially when singing louder or trying to hit higher notes. For many people, this position may also add a little more power to their voice, making it an even more attractive choice.
However, this position is extremely harmful to your vocal cords. The extra power comes from the fact that your vocal cords tighten when your head is titled back, and this position can permanently damage your vocal cords.
Similarly, make sure you’re looking ahead when hitting lower notes instead of tilting your head down.
6. Be Patient
You are not going to see instant results. While proper techniques will help you increase your vocal volume, it isn’t something that will happen in a few days, weeks, or even months. It can take even the best singers in the world years to achieve the results they want, so if you’re only just starting out, it will take you time to get to the skill you’re trying for.
7. Control Your Air Flow
Your voice is produced from your vocal folds.
When you’re breathing, your vocal folds open, and when you’re not, they close tight. When you sing (or talk), they open only enough that some air flows through the folds.
What does this mean for you? Breathing out too much while singing means that you lose some amount of voice quality, and makes you run out of air quickly. Controlling the airflow and making sure that there is a steady and constant flow of air passing through your vocal chords will help make sure that you can keep the power and volume of your voice steady and high.
8. Your Tongue Can Help With High Notes
As discussed, starting with your head volume can damage your voice if you haven’t practiced and trained your chest voice first. However, there will be times where you need to sing higher notes loudly.
You can use your tongue to help control the high notes.
If the back of your tongue is dipping down when you are singing, it can make your head voice sound breathy and lack power. Be aware of what you’re doing with your tongue and focus on keeping the back of your tongue lifted – this can help you not only increase the power of your voice but also control your pitch better.
9. Practice, Practice, Practice
This is especially important when you getting ready to perform a particular song or set.
Nerves can affect the power you pour into your voice. If you don’t know the song lyrics by heart, you may find yourself forgetting some in the middle of the performance. This may affect your confidence, or force you to break the focus on singing in order to remember the lyrics that you have forgotten. Both of these can affect the volume and power of your singing.
Make sure you know your entire set by heart when going into a performance. This will not only help you sing with confidence, it will also help you keep to the singing volume you are aiming for.
10. Don’t Push Yourself Too Far
It is one thing to strain your voice a little when practicing to help push through limitations. However, if your voice or throat starts to hurt, stop immediately. Similarly, straining your voice for too long is also not recommended.
If you continue to push yourself too far beyond your body’s limits, you can do permanent damage to your vocal cords. As soon as your body tells you to stop, stop, and come back in a few hours or the next day.