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Learning to Inhale

Brenda Jean Hamilton • March 2023Playing Tips • March 13, 2023

Without a proper inhale, the tone quality suffers. The solution is practicing mindful inhalations before phonation.

Here is a 4-step process for inhaling before singing:

Expand the ribs 360 degrees and keep them expanded.

Drop jaw, lift velum.

Release abdominal muscles on inhale.

Belly button moves toward spine upon phonation.

Brenda Jean Hamilton 

Lecturer of Voice, Troy University

SBO+: Here’s an adaptation of these breathing tips for wind instruments.

Without a proper inhale, the tone quality suffers. The solution is practicing mindful inhalations before tonguing.

Here is a 4-step process for inhaling before playing:

Expand the ribs 360 degrees and keep them expanded for steps 2 through 4.

Prepare the embouchure and tongue, staying relaxed.

Release abdominal muscles on inhale.

Belly button moves toward spine after the tongue releases the airstream.

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