In last month’s article, I introduced Accent Method Breathing (AMB), an efficient way to quickly take in breath to support singing and increase your versatility as a singer. The article included a few beginner AMB exercises, which you can try here. This month, I introduce some advanced breathing exercises for better singing.
Fundamental to AMB is the concept of SPLAT (Singers Please Loosen Abdominal Tension), which reminds a singer to take a quick, low in-breath between phrases to set up for the next. On inhalation, your diaphragm quickly descends, then you engage your abdominal muscles to exhale, with your rib muscles (intercostals) helping fine tune the pressure and flow of air.
Learning AMB, our studio singers have already increased their strength, flexibility and awareness of using their abdominals to release for the in-breath, and to consistently, consciously engage them to control the inward movement, to keep air pressure flowing for singing.
Most of these exercises can be done anywhere, and don’t need dedicated practice time. Little and often brings great results.
Accent Method Breathing gives a singer voluntary control and prevents over-breathing. Your brain initiates and controls the use of your abdominals, so you can increase or decrease air flow as needed. It requires and encourages good postural alignment, freeing the upper body of tension, and training the muscles to strengthen, coordinate and be ready for the endurance that singing demands.
For studio singers, they’re achieving clear, resonant sounds because their vocal fold closure is improved by good breath onset. Using AMB builds their confidence to sing long, upward, and extended phrases with an open throat and vocal tract