How to Get Your Voice in Shape, pt. 3: Strengthening Your High Chest Voice

Learn to find ease in your high chest voice as you sing so that you can strengthen your voice for more powerful performances

We’re back with the third part of how to strengthen your voice as a singer! If you haven’t checked out steps one and two, take a moment to go back and review them now. Each part of the process of rebuilding and strengthening your singing voice definitely builds on the previous step! Step one was all about establishing consistency and step two was about balancing your chest and head voice – a necessary foundational strength for singers. The work you do in step two will lead you right to what we’re discussing today: establishing your high chest voice range. Now remember, your high chest voice range will likely differ from someone else – so make sure you learn where yours actually is and use that during your exercises. 

Where is your High Chest Voice? 

Your high chest voice is the spot where your chest voice feels a little bit out of your comfort zone. Again, this will be different for everyone. But, that spot is where we’re starting on this step. If you don’t take the time to work on this high chest voice, it’s likely you’ll be going into your mix or pushing your voice too hard. And while those aren’t the worst things in the world, we want to strengthen our voice instead. We want to gradually go through these steps so that we can build a strong foundation and then build additional skills on top of that. Working through your high chest voice is an important part of that foundation. Today, we’re going to start by establishing where your high chest voice actually is! 

Locating your High Chest Voice

Start with a lower note and pick something to say, like “ooh”, “hello”, “hey” on that note. Just say the word, you don’t have to really sing – just match the pitch. If it feels good, keep going one pitch at a time. When you get higher up in your chest voice and everything begins to feel a bit tighter, that means we’re getting close to your high chest voice. If you’re having to push or force your voice out, you’ve gone too high! 

Now, stop and reflect: where were you when things started to feel uncomfortable? That’s where we want to work for this step of strengthening your voice. 

Exercises for your High Chest Voice

We’re going to start with a simple 5 note scale using the sound “bo”. Make sure you’re rounding the sound and not letting your mouth tighten up. Start lower and then move up your range, being mindful that your sound doesn’t change to “ah”. When you hit that spot of your high chest voice, begin descending scales the same way. In today’s video, I’ll walk you through this exact exercise! 

A second exercise to work on your high chest voice is to repeat that 5 note scale and the repeat the top note four times before descending. Again, the important part is that you’re keeping a round sound in your mouth by using “bo”. When you hit the point that your voice feels tight and pushed out, begin going back down.

When you’re working on these exercises, make sure that you’re really focusing on what feels good in your voice. If you’re having to strain or push, that’s a problem. Instead, we want to keep things easy. Maybe that means a smaller range or lowering down an octave. All of these exercises may seem easy at first, but they really do help you to work through your higher chest voice. This is a crucial skill in getting your voice into (or back into) shape!

Tune into today’s video for a full breakdown of these exercises! 

Want more help?

Check out my FULL Foundations Training with six areas of foundational strength to work on! By working on your voice foundations, you’ll be able to build a stronger voice, reduce vocal fatigue, and so much more!

foundational strength training for singers