by Dr. Ann Utterback, AVoiceDoc
One thing to keep in mind when using the Carry-On Vocal Booth at home or in a car or truck (or even when you’re in a sound booth) is your posture. Slumping forward, as many of us do everyday when using our computers, tablets, e-readers or phones, puts more pressure on the diaphragm (the main muscle used for breathing). This makes it more difficult to take good inhalations, and the effects on the voice from poor breathing are immediate. Over time this position can also cause back pain. (For more on proper breathing, see my website at www.OnlineVoiceCoaching.com.)
Ever see a turtle with its head jutting out of its shell? Well, many of us use this head position when working at the computer. This forward thrust of the head stretches and stresses the muscles in the neck. This affects our vocal folds and may raise our pitch. This is not a position you want to assume when you’re using the Carry-On Vocal Booth.
We also tend to look down at electronic equipment and at scripts, which compresses the larynx, found right behind your Adam’s apple, as well as putting more tension in the neck. Doctor’s are reporting that this habit of looking down when using a phone, e-reader or tablet is becoming one of the main causes of back pain in younger adults.
For good voicing you want to sit or stand tall so that your lungs can expand freely. You also want to keep your chin parallel to the floor to avoid tension in the larynx. This may require using a pillow or pad in your lap to raise the Carry-On Vocal Booth up to the correct level to meet these requirements.
Remember to use good posture for voicing when using the Carry-On Vocal Booth. You’ll hear the difference in your voice!
If you’d like more exercises that benefit your voice, check out my ebook, the fifth edition of BROADCAST VOICE HANDBOOK. You can download it instantly!