Let me ask you a question.
How much do you practice singing every day?
One hour, two hours, or even 3 hours?
I know, we’ve heard it all before. The more you practice, the better. Right?
You see, that’s a trap many of us fall into. And I’ve been there, too.
When I started this whole singing thing more than 15 years ago, I practiced 3, 4,….sometimes 5 hours EVERY day.
I was obsessed and I couldn’t help myself but singing.
I thought the more often I was repeating an exercise, the more ingrained it would get.
Sometimes I came home from a singing lesson and went on for another 2 hours.
But honestly, that’s the worst thing you can do.
And there’s a simple reason why…
If you break it down, singing is muscle work.
What does that mean?
Let me give you an example…
If you sing a high note, there’s actually a lot going on.
Higher notes need more “space”. And how do you create this additional space?
You lift your palate by stretching muscles that are connected to the palate.
And while technically everything’s fine here…
There’s a limit to it. Muscles get tired. Do some push-ups and you’ll know what I mean.
You see, when you practice some scales for more than 1 hour it hopelessly deteriorates.
Simply because the muscles are losing it’s strengh, vitality…and punch.
Eventually, the whole system collapses and…you’re getting hoarse…and frustrated.
And even worse…
The last thing your body will “remember” from this session… are these shitty-performed exercises.
So, how can you optimise this?
Be more idle with practicing. Don’t do it too long and don’t do it too often.
Actually, here’s what I found is the best approach (and what is part of my 80/20 singing method I follow religiously)
1) Do only the most fundamental and most effective singing exercises. The 20% that will boost your voice.
2) Always start…and end…your practice sessions with a fresh voice (“If it can’t get any better, you should stop.”)
3) Don’t practice more than 60 minutes a day…and don’t do this for more than 4 days a week.
Less truly IS more.
So, if you’ve been practicing restlessly up to now…you want to try this for the next 2 weeks.
And see how that’s gonna change your voice.
Have a good one
Felix “singing coach” Cerny