5 Vocal Exercises Public Speakers Swear By
If you’re like most people, you probably believe that vocal warm-up exercises are only important for singers. However, this assumption is completely wrong. Every professional, no matter what industry, should be using vocal warm-up exercises. These can help you:
- Sound professional in meetings
- When giving presentations
- To level up your speeches
Therefore, if you are responsible for giving presentations or speeches, then you definitely need a few basic vocal warm-up exercises. Typically, you are prepared for your first few lines of a presentation, but you don’t always think about how those lines are delivered.
In this presentation, we will provide you with 5 vocal warm-up exercises that public speakers swear by.
For Better Understanding Watch This Video Tuturial
Loosen up and Shush
The very first thing you must do before a presentation is to loosen up. Start by wiggling your shoulders and relaxing your neck and jaw. Then, take in a few deep breaths. This will help you shake out the nerves and create additional space within your body. This exercise will keep you from sounding anxious and tight.
Now, take in a few belly breaths, keeping your shoulders down. The key to good vocal breathing is belly breaths. Here’s how:
- Place your hands on your belly and push your stomach into your hands. Then, push the air out of your stomach to the front of your mouth.
- Pretend you’re a teacher trying to get your class to settle down. Let out one big “Shhhhh”, keeping your shoulders down. Do this several times.
This step should only take you about a minute.
This exercise is a fun one for warming up your tongue. When your tongue is nice and loose, it makes it easier to get your words out when you are presenting. If you’re not sure what a tongue trill is, it’s when you roll your tongue in your mouth as quickly as possible.
After doing a few with an even tone, try doing some with ascending and descending tones, about 5 each.
One of the best ways to warm up your mouth and vocal cords is humming. This is because the vibrations created by humming loosen your vocal cords. If you’re doing a morning presentation, humming is critical. Here are the basics:
- Start with a long “hmmmmm” and hold it as long as you can.
- Loosen your mouth/lips and hum without your lips pressed together. Your jaw and cheeks should be loose as well.
- Now, hum ascending and descending tones.
This should be done five times each.
Does the term “chant” make you a bit nervous? While it might feel a bit odd, it’s actually the most important step to a good vocal warm-up. You’re going to repeat the same 4 words over and over.
Since these words all start with the “M” sound, this exercise goes great right after the humming one. Therefore, as you finish up with humming, naturally transition into this one.
Once again, start with an even tone and then try ascending and descending tones. Once you feel warmed up, try fluctuating tones within each word.
This should be done for as long as you need to get warmed up. You’ll know that you are once the sound is long and clear. When you’re starting out, the sounds may be raspy/rough but by the end, this should be cleared up.
The very last exercise in the vocal warm-ups is to prepare to enunciate your words/sounds. You will now be adding the “P” and “T” sounds to the “M” sound you practiced previously. You’ll add the following sounds to your chants:
You will vary the length of your tones, practicing both long and short. You will also be fluctuating your tone, descending and ascending. Then, you’ll try to really enunciate the sounds, opening wide for the “A” sounds.
This should be done 5 to 10 times.
These exercises should only take you about 5 minutes to complete. If you’re short on time, you can step into the bathroom before your presentation and do a quick version. If you have a commute to get to where you’re going to do your presentation, you can do a longer version in the car. That is the beauty of these 5 vocal exercises, you can adapt them to what you need..