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Sing Without Tension – Ken Tamplin Vocal Academy

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Sing Without Tension – Ken Tamplin Vocal Academy

Singing is a sport and the voice should be treated as such.

Tension starts by “forcing” or “overusing” various muscle groups that start a cascading affect of “binding up” muscle.

Many coaches on the internet advocate there should be “no tension.”

With any kind of resistance training you will always have a degree of the sensation of resistance. The goal is to strength train correctly so that you can manage away stress/tension. I see many vocal coaches (and their students) promoting the idea that “there should be no stress while singing” and therefore frustrating the heck out of singers who think there is “something wrong with themselves” because they can’t, overnight, achieve this “stress free” singing. (this also gives a vocal coach “tribal knowledge” to keep you coming back to them as the only one who has the answer to this elusive concept) This is nonsense and here’s why: Singing is like a sport. And with any sport, it’s not the absence of stress, it’s the management of stress that makes a great athlete. Think of it like this: When Lionel Messi is going to goal, do you think his body is “stressed?” (Anyone who says it isn’t has never played a sport before). But Lionel has learned the art of training his body and mind for that moment when it’s time for him to step on the gas, take on 3 players and score what “looks” like an “effortless goal.” But you can be assured, it was not done “without effort” or without “stress.” Lionel achieved this through training his technical abilities as well as building stamina and muscle memory to achieve this consistency. Now it is true that some styles of singing require less stamina than others and therefore can be accomplished with less strength training. In other words, singing a light pop song requires very little “strength” in the sound whereas singing a heavy rock song often requires incredible strength and stamina. This is also true for those (like myself) that want to push their “limits” and abilities to be all they can be. This of course requires more “effort” and technical training. With that said, there are many stages to building this “stamina” and it’s ok to “find yourself” as one first starts with “damaging street singing” (with total stress) and going through the different stages of learning how to manage this stress away from the voice through correct training. If I didn’t show the different stages of this process, and only showed “perfection”, people would never learn that these people are all human, having to work on their craft just like yourself.

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79 thoughts on “Sing Without Tension – Ken Tamplin Vocal Academy”

  1. if i could give this video 10 billion likes! i would, thanks for sharing you knowledge with us
    you are the best!!
    just have one question can you Please tell us more about closure vocal damage and that “PING” sound! , im practicing as you say but should the voice should be comfortablly ping or how much effort is applied?
    i feel like i use more concious effort to produce that ping tone and closure using the ‘open throat technique’, i want that robust chest vibrating voice with comfortable ease; it was close to that before i think i jave vocal damage

    Thanks so much for elaborating on the open throat technique!
    thanks for reading this far ☺
    you are a god!!!

    1. Ken Tamplin Vocal Academy I feel stretch around my tonsils. There’s kind of hole that looks like “n” in the back of mouth when I see in my tonsils in the mirror. Then when I start to create the “A” sound, bright PING, the “n” looks like squeezed and closed a little. Then when we go through higher notes, especially at the transition from mix to headvoice, the “n” is just opened a little. Is that true condition? And in that condition I try to stretch all the muscle there (up of the “n”, both right and left side of the “n”), then always keep that sensation through low, middle, and high notes. And at the vowel modification, the upside of the “n” feels like closed, I try to keep it opened and let the air pass through. Is the stretch enough to create the bright PING or too much?
      I’m sorry if my questions are too long. I’m glad to hear your answer…,

    2. totally agree with you.I’ve had 3 one-on-one vocal coaches and none were as specific as him. He’s got gift for teaching this.

  2. holy crap!!! it took a few days for my body to really get the hang of it but i totally feel the vacuum sensation in my stomach now as it relaxes after each contraction

  3. Awesome classes! can you have a listen at some Symphony X songs? singer Russel Allen is a great hard rock example to take on! thanks

    1. +Ken Tamplin Vocal Academy There are many, but “Through the looking glass” is a good one for head voice!! 🙂

  4. When you say La a tongue can be laying and flat, Hovewer, when you say Eh back of a tongue goes up, making the eh sound, so when you say eh the tongue doesn’t have to be flat? To make this nice and bright sound)

    1. Khoa Nguyen Please join my vocal forum where you can post your singing related questions and interact with other singers. It’s free and you’ll receive great feedback from myself or my moderators. 

  5. seen many teachers, none gave such a concise description of use of breath, I know I’ve commented before, but still think this is the best vid on breath for singers, and I’ll say it again you the man!!!! And yes u do sing awesome!!!

  6. Finally a singing lesson on YouTube. That doesnt involve chewing on an aluminum can or tying a belt around your jaw. Among other absurd exercises. That would seem closer to how a dog plays with a toy. Than how a person would improve their singing. Lol

    Thanks Ken.

    Im no singer or even a karaoke guy. But its still nice to hear info that seems real or is applicable.

  7. Imo this is one of your most important videos. These little details r really so important I wish I saw this years ago

    1. abram leverette-Check out my free vocal forum where you can ask all of your singing related questions and get great feedback!

    2. Clearing your throat causes glottal attack of the vocal folds (it slams them together), and is not good for your voice. There is a method you can learn called the “silent cough” that involves a slow exhale through pursed lips, chin tuck to chest and swallow. This is an alternative way to clear your throat that doesn’t involve harshly attacking your vocal folds together. There are videos on youtube to explain how to do this.
      (I’m a graduate student studying speech language pathology!)

    1. Re: more helpful reply; I’m sorry, was there a question there? I thought you were making a statement.

    2. +Ken Tamplin Vocal Academy alright I’ll rephrase, I have anxiety related throat constriction which causes pain.(not all times). Singing for more than a few minutes also results in the same. Is there a remedy to this ? Should have put it more clearly to begin with sorry.

    3. One more thing, my whole face tenses up.. cheeks and everything. Relaxing them results in the song being less clear with lower energy. Thank you for your replies as well 😅

  8. Hi, when im singing theres a. Feeling that i always have a phlegm where in my voice keeps on cracking…

    1. donzhñjgssna lei sanga- check out my free singing forum where you can ask all of your singing related questions and get great feedback. 

  9. I have a question, Ken. I often deal with the sensation of a lump in my throat after singing. Would this be caused by over use of the tongue muscle?

    1. Hi Nutsie lll have you tried posting in our forum? It’s free to join and we address more technical and specific questions like this there.

  10. i cant even hit the notes 🙁 is it because i have a lot of tension in my throat, or does my vocal range just suck 🙁 i cant sing nearly every pop song 🙁

    1. gunnybunnyy   You need techniques that work. If you actually want to improve you should follow a complete course and do, mostly, workouts that are designed to build your voice.

  11. Thank you so much Coach ken..You are a very good teacher..I learned a lot from you..God bless you always.

  12. Haven’t regretted subscribing to your email yet.
    Ken Tamplin- thank you from the bottom of my heart for being my music coach. I’ve graduated high school a while ago, and so sadly no longer am able to have those free lessons from a choir teacher. 😓
    But you made it all better! I really dig the interactive parts of the videos too. I could SERIOUSLY feel the difference with the yawning thing.

  13. You might be the only person I don’t get annoyed with when they ask me to like and share- I genuinely want to.

  14. 3:26 rip neighbor’s ear, btw i have one problem when i tries to sing high notes my voice switches to head voice from chest and it sound compressed so, there is any exercise to fix it?

    1. ᴠɪʀᴜs 々 ʜᴀᴄᴋɪ 5⃣Really great question for the forum. Please post there, other singers will benefit from the reply and you will receive great feedback from either myself or one of my commentators. It’s free!

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