How Do I Break the Habit of Using My Neck Muscles While Singing?

Hi Coach – I love your you tube videos. They’ve been very helpful.  I’ve been singing for a very long time. I have develop some bad habits.  How do I break the habit of engaging my neck muscles.  I’m African American and culturally we use EVERY muscle in our bodies to sing :)   ~ Lynn

Hey Lynn,

I’m glad you’ve enjoyed the videos. I’d shift the idea of using every “muscle” in the body to sing, to utilizing your body as a whole to sing. Think of it as an energy or as resonance. If you’re tensing your muscles, you’ll inevitably cut off your voice, where as if you’re utilizing energy from your whole body, and allowing your sound to resonate throughout, then you’ll find much more freedom in your sound.

When it comes to specifically getting rid of that tension, it’s a factor of becoming aware of when you’re engaging the muscles in the neck and then consciously choosing to relax them. This can be easier said than done, and it’s certianly a process (not something that’ll happen overnight). You’ll have to make it a habit in singing for a while to identify when you’re tensing the muscles in your neck, stop and let them release, and then continue singing in that relaxed fashion.

Here’s an article that describes this a bit more

I hope this helps, and best of luck getting rid of that tension and along your vocal journey.

~ Vocal Coach Ken Taylor

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