3 Exercises to Improve Your Belt
Want to improve your belt voice? If you’re not familiar with this term – it’s basically singing high and strong in your chest voice. Most singers want to be able to belt, or sing powerfully higher up in their range. But many people find that singing this way causes vocal fatigue, and requires forcing or pushing. But, it doesn’t have to be that way. Today I’m sharing 3 ‘sissy’ exercises you can do to support a hardcore belt sound. With the right exercises, you’ll build those muscles so you can consistently create the powerhouse sound you’re looking for. The three exercises I’m sharing today might seem easy at first glance but just give them a go and see how your belting improves! Or click here to walk through these exercises with me!
Exercise #1: Long Tones
As the name suggests, you’re going to hold out a single tone for a long period of time. Remember, this sounds easy – but this is a foundational exercise many singers can’t do. When you’re ready to begin, choose a nice round sound to create. Make sure that you aim for a a pure tone at a quieter volume, but don’t tighten when you do this. Choose your note and hold it for as long as you can WITHOUT over-tightening your top abs or throat. Singers who can do this will have access to lots of vocal power without having to use unnecessary extrinsic muscles. When you’re using extra muscles, you’ll tire faster!
Exercise #2: Breathing
Another key skill for strong belting is your breathing. So, for this second exercise we’re going to breathe and engage specific muscles in our lower abs. Start by breathing in and out. Relax your airway, throat, and your abs. Once that’s more relaxed, it will feel like you’re pulling your lower pelvic area in and pull your navel towards your spine without your upper abs crunching and engaging. You’re really focusing on those lower transverse abs in this movement. BUT if you’re breathing efficiently, these will engage, you won’t have to draw them back. This exercise isn’t easy but it’s super helpful. When you activate these muscles, you’re working again to reduce fatigue.
Exercise #3: Relaxation
Most singers are tense when they sing, it’s a fact. They contract their muscles and tighten up. If you want to get more out of your voice, then you need to practice relaxation and expansion. In reality, no singer will be perfectly relaxed at every moment, but the more you can train your body to stay loose, the better! With this exercise, the goal is simply to do a mini warm up where you relax your body. Loosen your neck, relax your throat, stretch out your shoulders and abs. Releasing this tension will work wonders for your ability to belt and perform at a higher level.
The common goal of these sissy exercises is to release tension in your body. When you’re tight and trying to sing, your body has to work harder and you’ll fatigue faster. Instead, create an environment of relaxation for your body and voice. When you’re able to be in this relaxed space, you’ll be able to sing higher and stronger with more power and less fatigue.