Why Your Fitness Routine Should Include Singing

Posted by Norman Bailey on Saturday, April 9, 2016 Under: Singing

How much keep fit gear do you own?  Is the thought of doing exercises or even the idea of actually going to the gym tiring you out?

Then maybe you should consider joining a choir instead.

Experts are lining up to convince you that when it comes to giving you a top-to-toe tune up there’s nothing better than a good sing-a-long. For example, do you know how singing can reduce your stress levels or how good it is for your heart and lungs?   And if being able to tone your upper body and sorting out your posture wasn't enough, it’s also going to put a few extra years on your life.

All this from the humble past-time of singing?

Apparently so.

According to Professor Graham Welch, Chair of Music Education at the Institute of Education, University of London, singing will give you a physical and psychological boost.   For the past 30 years he’s studied the developmental and medical aspects of singing.

And he states.

“Singing has physical benefits because it is an aerobic activity that increases oxygenation in the blood stream and exercises major muscle groups in the upper body, even when sitting. Singing has psychological benefits because of its normally positive effect in reducing stress levels through the action of the endocrine system which is linked to our sense of emotional well-being.”

So singing is an aerobic exercise.  Well if you have no desire to travel back to the 80s.  Or if you’ve never had a fondness for legwarmers, Lycra and fluorescent sweatbands, then here’s a much cooler alternative.  If only someone had told you sooner.

Group singing is even better for you

Singing can even help you live longer.  Especially when you join forces with others.   According to the findings of a joint Harvard and Yale study, choral singing increased the life expectancy of singers in New Haven, Connecticut. The report concluded that this was because singing promoted both a healthy heart and an enhanced mental state. Another study at the University of California has reported higher levels of immune system proteins in the saliva of choristers after performing a complex Beethoven masterwork.

That explains what happen at a one of my voice workshops recently.  One visitor had this to say about her experience, “Who would think that breathing and singing exercises could be so tiring, my muscles hurt from inside.” I did panic a bit here because I don’t want to wear people out and put them off singing.  I was pleased that her next words were, “Had a lot of fun, thanks for great experience.”  Phew!

Thank goodness she got some of the psychologically benefits as well.  She went on to say, “The breathing exercises, tuning into the moment (when focusing where the sound vibrates), plus not feeling cautious about how you sound gave me such huge sense of freedom and being in the now.   I think people like me who are constantly busy would appreciate the opportunity to pause for the moment and sing their heart out.”  And finished by describing the experience as ‘Exercise for the soul.  So spiritual benefits too it seems.  I’ll have to look into this a bit more.

So sing..sing..sing.

If you don’t feel ready for the choir thing, then start by singing along with your favourite tunes.  It really doesn't matter what you sound like. The singing fairy doesn't care.  She’ll bestow her blessing on you no matter what.

If you do want to improve your voice then take a few lessons or join a choir that teaches you how to sing.  They don’t all do that apparently, so make sure you ask before you join.  And remember the main point of all this is to have fun.

Give it a go.  I’d love to hear how you get on.

In : Singing 


Art will feed itself

Life-long creative. I have one goal in life and that is to live from my creative endeavours, That what my motto 'Art will feed itself' means. this.