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Confusion with Breathing Technique!

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Hi Guys,

I've just joined the forum last week (but have been browsing through over the last couple of months) so this is my first post!

I own CVT, RSV and Singing Success (with Mastering Mix).. I've been using Brett Manning's products for a couple of years and its helped to an extent, but I wanted to move on to something more suited to my singing style (classic rock and blues mostly - Zeppelin (someday!), Cream, Clapton, Stevie Ray Vaughn some Pearl Jam etc)..

While reading through CVT and RSV I came across a fundamental difference in the breathing techniques mentioned -

1. CVT says that you should NOT visualize going to the loo in order to provide support as it can lead to a hernia!!! Also the process of inhaling is a bit different - CVT states that the lower abdomen should be pulled in, and only the solar plexus should expand outwards while inhaling..

2. Jaime Vendera says you should push downwards like going to the loo, as it gives a lot more support for the high notes. Also he talks about expanding the entire diaphragm, abdomen, ribs and chest (outwards, not upwards) for taking in the maximum oxygen.

CVT mentions that if this is done, it'll constrict the air flow in the throat..

Does anyone have any views on this? I'm a bit confused.. I've tried both, and to be honest, I'm obviously doing something wrong coz I still cant seem to support my singing properly - my voice gets hoarse very soon when i attempt to go high. (I've been singing for 2-3 years with singing success but it doesnt really teach proper breathing)

Would appreciate any inputs.

Thanks :)

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I'm not sure about the pushing down part. How do you inhale when taking a dump? I can't. I think the whole diaphragm thing sounds good in theory, but it's very hard to visualize. As far as I'm concerned, when you breathe your abdomen should start expanding involuntarily. The only way I can get my chest to expand is if I consciously try to breathe up high. Then again, this sort of breathing is second nature to me as I had it drilled into my head as a kid. However, I find myself over-inhaling at times, that is, I take in too much air occasionally.

I don't think that breathing should really be a conscious act; it should be more like "I reached the end of my note. Now I'm singing a new note. I reached the end of that phrase. Now I'm singing a new passage. Huh, I wonder where all the air comes from?" Just my two cents.


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Hey NCdan,

Sorry, maybe I didn't explain it properly.. The dump part is for actually singing, so I guess it comes under 'support'.. Jaime says you should push only downwards, not outwards or in any other fashion.. and this will help with the production of higher notes and give proper support.

the rest is about the actual breathing process..

I think i'm having issues connecting my breathing to my singing.. can't seem to solve that!!

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CunoDante -

thanks for the inputs buddy! I think I understand what you're saying about the breathing now.. But to answer the rest of your questions, I'm afraid I'm lost - coz I'm not sure what you mean by good compression and cord depth??!

Any clarity on that would be greatly appreciated - I'm a noob with these things :D

Thanks for the suggestion on the F/V exercises, I'll give them a shot today!

I'm looking at primarily getting comfortable with my 'mix' and singing in the higher registers.. I'm not into metal so much, so the 80s screams aren't really what im looking for.. think Pearl Jam, the Who, some Zeppelin in terms of the kind of music I enjoy singing (or would want to be able to sing comfortably)..

Right now when I go high, its just plain painful beyond a point, and all kinds of muscles / veins start popping out in my neck..

If it helps, maybe I can record a clip and post?


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CunoDante -

think Pearl Jam, the Who, some Zeppelin in terms of the kind of music I enjoy singing (or would want to be able to sing comfortably)..

bigfoot, regarding the groups you mentioned above, you need to realize these are challanging songs especially the zeppelin.

not to sound negative, not my intention at all, you aren't likely to get notes, let's say in led zep songs to be "comfortable" in terms of easy to sing, for quite a while. a lot of those songs are difficult because of the songs high tessitura, meaning high notes predominate those songs which raises the difficulty.

i just felt you might want a heads up, tough vocals ahead notice....lol!!! a lot of the folks on this forum can relate.

but by all means "go for it."

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i'm not sure what you mean by good compression and cord depth??!

bigfoot, when you vocal train, one of the biggest goals is to increase the likeihood that you will be able to close the vocal folds (adduct) the folds and sustain closure as needed throughout your entire vocal range, particularly the higher notes. if you don't sustain clousure, as you go up in pitch the folds will break apart and you'll end up in falsetto.

(basic explanation)

another is to isolate the vocal folds so they are left unemcumbered to do their primary job, make pitch changes.

it takes muscle development to be able to regulate the pressure you apply to the folds and good breath support because to make higher pitches (notes) you need less air going to your folds but more pressurized air and the folds have to be able to resist this pressure.

hope i've helped...by reiterating what i've learned, it reinforces my knowledge. i was the biggest inhaler and fold blower-outer you'd ever want to know....lol!!!! i'd take in these ridiculously large breaths then try to contain all the air and try to sing....

boy was i off track...lol!!!! i couldn't understand try i was so tense, and stiff till steve fraser got a hold of me and set my ass straight....lol!!!!

now i can meter the air rather than force or push the air.

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@ Videohere,

thanks for the insight buddy! :)

Makes a lot of sense, and ya, I totally know what you're talking about - just didn't know it with this terminology!!

Anyhow, I've signed on with Robert Lunte as of yesterday, so hopefully things should be looking good shortly :)


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thanks guys!

CunoDante - sorry buddy, I dont know my range yet - have never actually measured it :-( I only know my range in terms of the songs i sing!! but now that classes with Rob have started, I should be able to get back to you with details pretty soon!


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