FAQ’s about Breathing
1. Q: Should the chest rise and fall?
A: No; the chest should remain slightly elevated during all phases of the breath.
2. Q: Do I need to tighten the abs?
A: No, the abdominal muscles will be free to move, expanding for inhalation and contracting for exhalation and singing.
3. Q: Do I need to breathe through the nose?
A: You can inhale more quickly through the mouth. Inhale through the nose and mouth together. (And prepare the first vowel you want to sing, while inhaling).
4. Q: Should the ribs or chest fall as I sing?
A: The ribs and chest should remain stable and slightly elevated for both inhalation and exhalation.
5. Q: I feel like I cannot expand at the waist. Why?
A: Usually this means you have raised the ribcage too high, or your chest is too collapsed. Find the happy medium that allows the abdomen to move freely. Try it on the floor.
6. Q: How can I tell if I am doing this right when I am practicing?
A: Either a mirror or hands-on control. See Tools for Observation.
7. Q: Do I have to stop and hold before I sing?
A: No. You can expand to inhale and then immediately begin singing.
8. Q: If I don’t fill up the chest, won’t I run out of air?
A: Usually, the air that is in the upper chest is not well-controlled on exhalation. So, “topping off the tank” is useless. The air streams out quickly, producing a breathy tone.
9. Q: Why is my stomach gurgling?
A: If your stomach is gurgling, you might be hungry or you might have drunk a lot of liquid. In any case, if your stomach is gurgling, you are moving the correct muscles!
10. Q; When I breathe this way, I don’t feel like I am working very hard. Can this really be enough to sing loud or high phrases?
A: This way of breathing doesn’t feel like hard work, because you are using your muscles very efficiently. The large muscles of the abdomen can easily handle this task.