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Vocal Teacher question, please help.

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MariFreakinA
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I currently have two vocal teachers (I know, that's not good). However, one is for college and the other I pay every other week to see. The one at the college has been my teacher longer, but since seeing her I haven't noticed an improvement in my voice. They are both classical teachers, but the one from the college is teaching me contemporary.

Both teachers have given me this advice on breathing:

My one college teacher has not noticed a posture issue when it comes to my singing, she just tells me to stand up straight and expand my rib cage while I stand. She basically tells me to breathe low like into my lower abdominal region and to make sure I am back breathing as well. Other than that, she really doesn't give me any specific exercises. She has learned the Berklee Method and uses that book to teach me exercises.

The other teacher who I pay to see (my first lesson was yesterday) noticed immediately that I had a problem with posture when I sing, she told me that my head juts out forward when I sing and in turn that puts weight on my spine. So she made me stand in front of a mirror and watch my posture while I sang. Breathing wise, this teacher makes me expand my ribcage with my breath and then keep my ribcage expanded and breathe into my lower abdominal region while I breathe into my back and sides. She said my ribcage should be the last thing to come down when I am singing, or in my case hissing lol because I just literally learned how to do it yesterday.

Basically, what I want to know is which vocal teacher's techniques toward breathing is right? Or are they both right? The second way of breathing, with my ribs expanded by the breath makes me feel like I am holding my breath, which I have read that's what it should feel like. It shouldn't just feel like air just exiting the body but should be more about controlling the breath.

Thanks for any reply. If something doesn't make sense just ask.

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I can wail on guitar and could never sing a lick!! Finally just took the leap into vocal lessons. Much better after the 1st lesson. Many coaches believe that they're approach is the best. I am learning from the best and she teaches "passive breathing" Freak'in incredible and very different. But makes so much sense. check all the links and you will find what I mean. let me know what you think! http://ezinearticles.com/?Singing-Exercises-Are-the-Push-Ups-of-Voice-Training&id=6681982

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So now I understand what your teacher is teaching you. I think a lot of teachers teach their students this way of breathing. However, there's a great website called singwise.com, and this vocal teacher basically says that just breathing into your belly (which is basically what passive breathing is), may hyper extend the support muscles, especially if you are taking in too much air. Your teacher honestly may be teaching you passive breathing because you are a beginner and a lot of beginners tend to tense up their abdominal muscles. So a teacher will usually tell a beginner to relax those muscles and breathe into them to get the feeling of what a relaxed abdominal region should feel like.

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