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How Do You Maintain A Steady Flow of Air?

Hi Ken, really enjoying your videos. Regarding your breathing with your diaphragm video, how do you maintain that steady breath while singing? Do you “sneak” in small breaths while you are doing it? And if you do, won’t it interfere the flow of your singing?

Thanks, Timothy

Hey Timothy,

Good question. The flow of air you use as a singer can be altered by two things… the diaphragm and the vocal cords.

If there’s too much space between your vocal cords (creating a breathy sound), then the air will leave you much more quickly, causing you not to have good control over the breath. Likewise, if you’re not continuing the outward push around your torso while exhaling utilizing your diaphragm to help moderate that airflow, then you’ll likely run out of air much more quickly as well.

If both of these elements are in place though, you will be able to sing sustaining notes/phrases for long periods of time. Do this, and you won’t need to be taking unnecessary breaths all of the time. Actually, I find that more often than not I have too much air now, instead of too little.

Of course, you can’t continue singing forever. There are natural pauses in the music where you’ll need to fill the tank back up, but if you have time, you may want to exhale and old air before you do. This will help keep you from building up too much pressure underneath the cords. As a side note, this naturally will interrupt the flow of air momentarily, but the consistent flow of air is only necessary when you’re creating sound, not when you’re breathing.

I hope this helps shed a little bit more light on breathing for you.

Vocal Coach Ken Taylor

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