Tips for a healthy voice and a sonorous performancePublic Speaking: Be careful with your voice and don't whisper
Protect your voice as a public speaker
Professional speakers must be particularly careful as their voices are their prerequisites for their tasks. That’s why you’ll find tips on how to protect your voice on these pages.
As a coach and speaker, I know how important a healthy voice is for some of us. Professional speakers need to be particularly careful because their voices are essential to their activities. Some people use their voices more often and under conditions that can cause additional stress. Uncontrolled screaming, shouting and singing damage the voice, just like speaking for long periods in cold or noisy surroundings and during physical exertion.
That’s good to know: The voice can also be nurtured. There are many tips for public speakers.
Always warm up yourself and your voice before a speech. A cold start doesn’t do the voice any good. This can include relaxation techniques and gentle exercise. Your voice coach will show you suitable techniques specifically for activating your voice.
2. Use your natural voice
Avoid forcing your voice to a lower or unnatural pitch.
3. Regenerate yourself and your voice
Permanent speech strains the vocal cords. This often happens unnoticed in the beginning, but at some point, the body defends itself with hoarseness.
Rest your voice as much as possible between performances and avoid tension and stress. If the voice is attacked due to an infection, it is advisable to rest your voice temporarily and drink a lot of fluids, for example, ginger tea. So the best strategy to get back to your voice quickly is still to just “shut up”.
4. Train your voice
Participate in voice training and learn voice techniques that can protect and improve your voice.
5. Coughing instead of clearing your throat
If you have a hoarse voice, you usually clear your throat. In this way, our voice becomes clear again, but we strain the sensitive mucous membranes of the vocal folds. It is better and just as effective to cough briefly.
6. Don’t smoke
Smoking is taboo for good vocal hygiene.
7. Avoid unhealthy environment
Avoid unhealthy, smoky rooms, bars and places where the environment can adversely affect speech quality.
8. Beware of alcohol
Drink alcohol moderately, if at all.
9. Be careful with coffee
Coffee, black and green tea should only be consumed in moderation, as these drinks dry out the mucous membranes.
10. Drink water
Keep yourself and your voice moist by drinking plenty of non-carbonated water.
11. Healthy lifestyle
Practice a healthy lifestyle that includes cardio training and good nutrition.
The fastest way to lose our voice is to scream or shout. But there are also many less obvious ways to burden your voice, and public speakers need to know them. One example is whispering. To protect your voice, you may think that whispering is softer, gentler and less stressful for your vocal cords. But the truth is that whispering can be dangerous for your voice.
Whispering really does affect your voice more than normal speech. When you whisper, you send an enormous amount of extra air to the vocal cords, making them dry and irritated. This is even worse than screaming and shouting. When whispering, the vocal folds are tightened so that they are closed at the front and open at the back. This is an unnatural way of using the voice. When you do this for a long time, you will find it difficult to speak normally again afterward, because it impedes the vocal cords in their function.
If you need to speak, don’t whisper. People who care about their voices should avoid whispering and just talk quietly.
13. Trust is good, control is better
In case of doubt, you would rather go to a medical specialist, such as a doctor who knows what to do.
14. Many more tips
And there are many more ways in which to protect your voice.