“Belly Breathing”

I read today that Adele is learning to “belly breathe” to help her overcome stage fright.

My initial reaction to this was, I will admit, of great surprise, as from the description in the news article, this is what I teach my pupils from day one! Just in case I was mistaken, I did a bit of research, however my finds have shown me that I wasn’t mistaken.

Belly breathing is defined on Wikipedia as “Diaphragmatic breathingabdominal breathingbelly breathing or deep breathing is breathing that is done by contracting the diaphragm, a muscle located horizontally between the chest cavity and stomach cavity. Air enters the lungs and the belly expands during this type of breathing.”

The reasons I give to my pupils for breathing like this, is that it gives you more breath to work with for each line you sing, as well as making it easier to release your breath and breathe in straight away at the end of a line in a song, however it is interesting to see that famous stars use it as a calming mechanism!

Find out more about singing lessons from me here.

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What becoming a singing teacher has taught me, and why I am so proud of my students

I have always loved helping others learn new things, so teaching was always something I was interested in. I considered going to University to become a teacher, but as much as I love it, my love of performing is just as strong, so I wasn’t sure that I wanted to dedicate that many years to training to be a teacher.

I left college and started working for my parents business part time in January 2010. In May 2010 I got a phone call from Mark Thompson-Smith regarding my application to teach vocals at his franchise of Clive’s Easylearn Schools, which I had put in quite a long time ago. I went in for the interview, and got the job! Last year Mark took his schools privately as “Ready to Rock Schools”.

This started my journey of learning to teach, and it has been an amazing journey so far. By teaching, I have reminded myself of things that I had almost forgotten about doing, and have helped better myself as a singer, as well as helping my pupils. The passion my pupils have for singing reignited my passion for performing too.

The joy I get when I see my pupils hit a note for the first time, or finally get the breathing exercise, or other technique, is like no other. I am so proud, when I think of how far they have come, not only in the sense of singing technique, but also confidence – on and off the stage.

I was given a unique opportunity to teach based on my passion for music, and without teaching qualifications. I have now been teaching for over two years, and the experience I have gained (I feel) cannot be matched.

I have recently resigned from Ready to Rock Schools to further my career. I am now taking on new pupils privately, and am excited by the prospect of helping more aspiring singers to realise their potential. I am also very excited about becoming partly self employed, and being able to decide on my own times of when I work. I’m really looking forward to the future, and I am hoping that at some point not to far away I can make singing at events and teaching my full time jobs.

Find out more about singing lessons with me in the Portsmouth area here.