Locating Your Larynx for Improved Singing - dummies

Locating Your Larynx for Improved Singing

By Pamelia S. Phillips

Because the position of the larynx affects the tone of your singing, you want to know where your larynx is. The larynx can move up or down. A low larynx helps create a full, open sound. Raising the larynx too high creates a tighter and more strident sound.

Place your fingers on the middle of your throat underneath your chin. Now swallow. As you swallow, you can feel something move up and then down. That’s your larynx.

The bump in the middle of the larynx is called the Adam’s apple. Because men usually have a larger, more pointed larynx than women, guys can feel their Adam’s apple more easily.

Keep your fingers on your throat and yawn. Feel that? The larynx went way down. When you sing, you want the larynx to be in the middle of your neck, (a neutral position) or lower. A low larynx helps create a nice, full, open sound for classical music. The larynx in a neutral position is closer to what happens when you belt.

Raising the larynx too high creates a tight or squeezed sound. Some teachers talk about a raised larynx for belting. If you drop the larynx low for classical singing, the position of the larynx is higher for belting. Call it a neutral position because thinking of a raised larynx may encourage you to push up or press to raise your larynx.

You want to release the larynx on the inhalation so that it opens. Not releasing the larynx upon inhalation can cause fatigue, because the muscles in the larynx are always in action when you’re singing. Those muscles need a rest between phrases.

With your finger in the middle of your throat, hum a few bars of your favorite song. The buzzing sensation that you feel is your vocal cords vibrating and creating tone. Awesome! You may feel that buzzing sensation in your lips or around your nose.

You can even feel the vibrations on the crown of your head. Because you can’t see your voice, feeling the vibrations of sound is important. Your singing voice makes vibrations that you can feel in your body and hear resounding in the room.

Trusting the feeling of good technique is important, because each room that you sing in has different acoustics. To monitor your tone, learn to feel the vibrations instead of relying on reverb.