Vocal Warm Up Exercises Part 2: Preparing The Voice

Posted on 31st March 2014 in Vocal exercises, Warming up

Warming Up The Voice


Are you relaxed and ready to take the next step in our vocal warm up?

First let’s slowly warm up your vocal instrument in order to equip yourself for the demands you are about to place on it.

If you missed out on Part I of this warm-up tutorial that focusses on stretching the body and preparing it for a singing session, please click here. If not, let’s continue.

The duration of your warm up depends on the individual. Some factors include: your physical health, the types of tasks you you will be engaging in, whether you are belting, or singing something more gentle.

We want to engage simple vocalization exercises with limited concentration.

By closing your eyes and using your imagination to feel the areas of your body you are engaging, you will be better in tune with strengthening your control over that production area.

Basic Vocal Exercises


We will cover a few basic vocal exercises to now prepare your muscles in your mouth, throat, tongue and diaphragm.

Applying these simple warm-up techniques will make your breath control, articulation, projection, range, and tone much easier to produce when about to perform or practice.


All professionals will set aside time for warm-up before a performance. Running through a number of scales, breathing exercises, and stretching.

In this lesson will we cover 4 simple exercises including Lip Rolls, Humming, Slides & Sirens, and Tongue Trills.

Provided below are explanations of the movements as well as video demonsatrations to offer visual examples for your benefit.

As you try each of the exercises, keep in mind that you perform these using good posture, standing balanced keeping your feet flat on the floor, shoulder width apart.

Take some deep breathes, employing the full power of your diapragm.

Avoid anything that could constrict the throat including alchohol, coffee, soda pop, and never practice singing when you have a throat infection.


Lip Rolls 

This is an excellent way to warm up all areas of your range immediately without causing strain, as well as freely upping your range, compressing cords to hit higher notes, while loosening the jaw, tongue, and lips.

Rather than being concerned with other elements like tone, enunciation, and pure vowels, you are free free to simply work on hitting the notes without the extra tension.

The idea is to blow through your lips, causing them to vibrate rapidly. Take a deep breath, then blow out between your lips. Not too loose.

Keep your lips tight enough together to create the right amount of resistance.


The Hum

Another simple exercise for vocal warm up is humming. Boosting the “internal resonance” your vocal chords create will raise your capacity to hear and better perceive your tone internally, enabling you to tune before you begin singing.

This is strongly encouraged by vocal coaches as it  correctly enhances the positioning of the diaphragm, mouth, throat and nasal passages. 

Begin by making  a hmm sound.  You should allow the pitch to shift upwards as you hum.

 As your pitch increases, you will start to  feel a buzzing like feeling in your nose. You may even feel it in your it in your eyes, all the way to your head. the voiced pitches.

Try this exercise: Hum the first 4 notes of the basic scale. Hum do re mi fa, then try in reverse, back to do. 


Slides & Sirens

 You want to open up your throat and allow the air to move forward, sliding up and down your pitches in a smooth, gentle transition. Increase your volume and pitch by stretching.

NOT pushing, avoiding any tension. Watch the video above, where molly demonstrates the ease of slides and sirens. Make sure you try it for yourself.


Tongue Trills 

An excellent alternative to the lip trill, especially if you are struggling with monitoring your controlled air flow. You may be able to sustain your tone longer if the lip trill is too difficult.

The tongue trill uses the same principle in that you exhale and gently resist the flow in a controlled manner as the tongue vibrates with the passing air. See the video above for a visual description.

Learn – Practice – Repeat


The real key to strengthening your voice is singing as much as you can. But in order to accomplish this, you need to habituallly build up your singing stamina through the above exercises and techniques.

So commit a little time before you begin your practice or performance.

Think of what an athlete does to prepare even before practicing…they warm-up!

We hoped you enjoyed some of these basic warm up exercises, and encourage you to put them into practice daily.

If you are serious about taking your singing to the next level, please don’t forget to get your copy of “How To Improve Your Singing Voice” eBook free for signing up to our weekly newsletter.

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