Keeping the tension out of your larynx, that's one way to learn how to sing better and one of the most effective. More commonly called the voice box, the larynx is actually like a small box that holds the vocal cords. Made of cartilage, it is surrounded and supported by muscles.
The larynx plays an important role in the tones you produce while singing. Below is the process of creating a sound:
* You decide to sing and the brain prepares the vocal cords * The vocal folds start to fold shut * Air rises up from the lungs * The air forces itself against the vocal folds, causing them to vibrate
If you look at a picture of the larynx, you will see the trachea tube running up to the vocal cords contained in the larynx, and above that the epiglottis. The air that rises up and forces the vocal folds to vibrate is called subglottic pressure.
You can easily feel your larynx by laying a finger gently at the base of your throat. The larynx will move down when you yawn and up when you swallow. The lower position of the larynx indicates the throat is in an open position. This means there is unrestricted air flow, which is good for creating solid, rich sounding tones.
Producing the Best Tones
The subglottic pressure and the position of the larynx can both directly affect your singing. You need to manage the flow of air to the vocal cords and keep your larynx in the lower or central position in order to learn how to sing better.
But when the vocal flaps may close completely as subglottic pressure is formed caused by the larynx being tense. When that happens, the flaps will burst open when the pressure becomes high enough. An odd, almost like a clicking noise may be the resulting sound instead of a tone. This is called a glottal attack.
When you begin to sing, the onset of tone resulting from the vibrating vocal folds is called the attack. Its name sounds more vicious than it really is; you don't actually want pressure attacking your vocal cords, but you do want air flowing smoothly.
To produce the best tones, keep in mind that:
* Repeated glottal attacks can damage vocal cords * Improper posture can lead to vocal cords not closing properly and allowing air to escape * A larynx that is pushed upward will result in a nasal sounding tone * Tense muscles around the larynx will cause the vocal cords to function improperly, leading to a poor tone * Singers who sound breathy have too much air flowing through the vocal cords
As you can see, the quality of tones that you produce is largely because of the larynx.
A simple thing like positioning your head can affect the ability of the vocal cords to open and close properly. We don't usually think of our vocal cords as something we can control, but that's the closest thing we can do. That is just one of the reasons why you should also focus on good posture.
To keep your larynx in the down position, hold your head up straight so your neck is in line with your spine. Relax your jaw, it should not be tense. Tightening of the vocals cords will result if the tightening of the muscles around the larynx happen.
Learning how to sing better involves a lot more than just forming notes. Good singers understand how the body's components work in unison, and that includes the larynx.