Hi everyone! I decided it was important to write about these exercises as well as demonstrate them. For each of the 6 exercises, there are:
a short video demonstration; some reasons why I (as a McClosky Voice Technician and Master Teacher, and a soprano) think this exercise is important; and tips how to do the exercise.
Why we do McClosky Relaxation Exercise #2
The tongue is powerful because it is biologically necessary to swallowing, by contracting and moving food or liquid from the front of the mouth into the throat. The tongue is the largest soft body in the oral cavity; therefore has the most potential to dampen sound, which we do not want it to do when we are singing.
The tongue is necessary for the formation of vowels; tongue tension can alter vowels. We have good sensation at the front of the tongue, but less sensory feedback in the middle and base of the tongue, so there can be tension of which we are unaware. \
Allowing the tongue to rest comfortably, feeling relaxed in the mouth, creates important resonating space for singing.
Tips to do this exercise well:
The goal of the exercise is to release tension in the tongue. This is accomplished with a stretch and relax sequence. Try to notice as you stretch, where along the tongue you feel the pull. This is the area that you need to release.
Do several repetitions. You may stretch somewhat vigorously, but try to relax thoroughly.
If you feel irritation under the tongue at the frenulum (the connector to the bottom of the mouth), take it easy!!!
Take note of where your tongue is when you are not speaking or singing. It should rest in the mouth. If you habitually push your tongue against the roof of the mouth, you need to work to release this habitual tension.
For McClosky Relaxation Exercises 3-6, watch for my upcoming blogposts! Happy singing!