There are many different reasons one may want a better quality of voice. Singers, lawyers, doctors, priests or salespeople may rely on their voice for their profession. Others may simply find it hard to generally communicate because they are too softly spoken, mumble, monotone, loud, nasal or sound young when they speak. And then there are those who simply have an issue with expressing their “inner voice” and needs.
Your voice is a precious gift to be taken care of no matter who you are. Through a variety of poses, breathing techniques and chants, yoga can be used as a tool to keep your throat clear, and to keep your vocal chords at their peak. Read on to find out more.
Many yoga Asanas (physical poses) may be used as a medicine for throat problems and may improve voice quality. They do so by strengthening the muscle of the throat and by soothing the vocal chords. Popular Asanas for voice improvement include both Sarvangasa and Simh Asana.
Sarvangasa Asana benefits both throat muscles and vocal chords by exerting pressure against the throat. It clears throat congestion, alleviates symptoms of thyroid disorders and improves overall circulation.
Simh asana, otherwise known as Bhairavasana or the ‘Lion pose’, may also improve voice quality. It does so in treating any disease of the face, tongue and vocal chords. The pose also alleviates symptoms of speech disorders; asthma and bronchitis, all of which may all affect the voice.
Yoga chanting is an ancient practice based on the principles of vibrational medicine. Through the vibration of sound, it allows for a communication with the divine and encourages feelings of bliss, peace and well-being. Physically speaking, science has demonstrated chanting can benefit the metabolism, boost endorphin levels, lower blood pressure and improve voice quality.
Reciting the mantra OM every day for at least 10-15 minutes may help improve voice quality. By experimenting with different voice modulations as you chant, voice base and stamina is strengthened and improved.
Pranayama is the yogic art of breathing that consists of a series of exercises designed to help the body reach optimum levels of vitality. Pranayama breathing techniques clear any imbalances in the voice by using the muscles that house voice box (pharynx) and vocal chords. This clears any congestion in the pharynx, heals throat problems and ultimately improves voice quality.
The most popular and effective Pranayama technique for the voice is Ujjhayani pranayama. With closed lips and a contracted throat, the breath is alternated between the nostrils (using a finger to close each nostril at a time) with each inhalation and exhalation. As a result, a reverse sound is produced that stimulates the muscles surrounding the vocal chords, allowing for a decongestion of the pharynx to take place.