Thursday, February 25, 2016

Do You Strain For High Notes?

Straining For High Notes?

Do you strain for high notes?  You are, if you feel you have to force out a note, increase the volume, or if you tense up.  Tension can be in the neck, the tongue, or the jaw and it can feel like muscle tension or pain.  There is a way to stop straining but merely thinking about it will not work. 

What causes tension?

You cause tension.  You are trying to overcome something else, though.  Improper training, improper singing technique, and not maintaining your voice are three issues which one or all lead to straining.  When the muscles inside your neck aren't doing their job, you activate outside muscles to try to overcome the others.  They are not related and not connected to muscles which do the job of singing without straining.

So, what, if I strain?

Here's what: You will lose endurance.  You will lose or not have the ability to sing without breaks or cracks in your range.  You will not have high notes. You will cause irritation that can lead to blisters or vocal nodules, if you strain over a period of time.  Nodules cause severe hoarseness which lasts for two weeks or more and also will cut of the top end of your range.  If you get them surgically cut off, you may be left with scar tissue.  Scar tissue does not vibrate like undamaged tissue and you will not have your natural sound and this will probably be permanent.

How do I not strain?
Get proper vocal training.  This means to get training from a vocal coach who know how to safely sing and also to be able to sing high and/or powerfully.  All vocal coaches do no know how to train singers this way.