Yoga Teacher Training Workshop on Voice


You know, you’re doing things that you’ve promised yourself, you’re not going to do manual work and a few trainings lately, and highlighting language we might not get on time too much today, we’ll

see how we go. And we just kind of keep looking at each other and go, Oh, we stood up. And then, in our own practice, I know that I’ve been working on it recently about what I say. And just, you know, things like don’t even think about the way I say things. And I think all the time, you know, it’s really

hard to break. And before we get on to the language, we’re going to talk a little bit about the boys. So as a drum teacher, like I said before, kind of singing and these days are done a little bit voice work. And I think one of the hardest things for you guys as yoga teachers is getting my balance right. Between a class that is like calm and gentle, welcoming, relaxing, but people can actually hear what you say. Saturday, because it’s really tricky actually, if you’re trying to create an atmosphere that’s really settled, really meditative quiet,

attended by the fans because I thought we’d come in

is really common. And I think we get scared of being too loud and too dominant the present in the room, because we think that’s gonna detract from their experience. It’s not, it’s really not. There are times to be quieter and calmer, but you still need to be audible to everyone in the room all the time. Because you’ve got students on their backs, you’ve got shoes upside down, they call always look at you, and you don’t really want them to you don’t want them to be doing funny things to see what you’re doing. You want them to be able to be in their practice and guided by your thoughts. So it is important Voice is really well protected, really clear and audible. And I know from teaching replacement classes, a lot of old people and young people, but a lot of people have hearing loss. So you’re also trying to kind of deal with the fact that you need to speak up over your music, build a massive room that you might be in with your voice says communication needs to be clear. So, how many of you feel confident with speaking publicly, like, that’s fine? Maybe your teacher, okay, but it’s okay. So, it’s just going to build on those things. You already feel comfortable with this, this practice and it might be stuck, you know, and it might be something you go through. So just take from it whatever you need. We’re going to talk about opening that space. If you look at the front page, it’s shaped and it’s very much like learning about any part of the body. The voice is a comical record. He’s got his muscles, and his breath. And that’s all it is. There’s no magic there. So that’s really reassuring to me. Because that means that everybody who has a voice box and can agree can control their voice. It is possible, you may have a quiet voice naturally. But you can train like you can train your hamstrings, that you can train anything, your voice to be different for whatever purpose you need it for. So you can kind of use it as a tool and adapt it for different purposes in your yoga teaching or anything in life, really. So it’s nice to know that it’s nice to have that kind of security. Yeah, it’s the same. The basic premise of making sound is the air comes from your lungs, passes through the vocal folds. So the larynx the voice box, which vibrate to make vibration, sound waves, and then traveling on the air. They sound waves come out of your mouth, and they travel through the space too. Equals is never tempted by that by the other person’s brain. That’s the basic premise. So let’s have a little look at the anatomy. And I think this is quite a useful diagram. But the one on the left is obviously a kind of cross section of the face. If you could find kind of your Adam’s apple is let’s do it all myself that she said I just to give you a heads up, slide down until you feel the bony bony bit sticking out and then bring your chin back in. You can feel there’s like a lot men have a bigger one. So it’s easier for them to find but we all have it. I just want you to swallow, keep your fingers on it and swallow.

I keep your fingers on it and you’ll see

what happens to

me. So it’s quite able to kind of move up and down within within the throat is quite flexible and muscles about it quite free. Inside there, you’ve got this little diagram on the right shows which is a cross sections like looking down. So if you were to cut my neck up, but we’ve dealt with voicebox that’s what you’d say. And you can see I get mixed up

at the front of the throat, they’re close together and at the back of the throat and widen, so it’s like this shape. So that

typecast at that point and wide back. And what sound is, is first of all vocal folds and what fits on the diagram here. They vibrate quite quickly, and they get along and they get shorter, a sound passes as your breath passes through them. It’s an amazingly specific and detailed muscular action, that we have no idea how to do. Incredible, like how do we get ourselves to do not really, but it is a muscular action. And then all around it, you’ve got more muscles, you’ve got sort of other vocal courses on the site that they call folks, vocal cords, and then more muscles around. Go back to the diagram on the on the left, you can see where the mouth is the dark areas Kind of pinky ready areas, burial spaces. So you have to have a space in your mouth, that above your tongue, you have spaces in your nose, your nasal cavities, and then you have spaces at the back of your throat, there are spaces and they have resonance to the sound. So we need to amplify the sound because it comes down to properties in order for it to kind of be able to be projected a little bit more and and to create a kind of a warmer sound. Otherwise, the breakfast sound would produce a very thin and it wouldn’t have any depth to it. So those are resonating chambers, everybody has that all slightly different shapes. And quite well I say slightly odd, quite a lot different. So some people can have massive spaces in their face in their head. Some people can have really small spaces, and that’s one of the reasons that voices sound different. So but we all have them and we’ve obviously got our kind of windpipe and then are our own soccer guests and we’ve got the ability to kind of close off to the can Awaken swallow. We can’t see both at the same time that the epiglottis which shuts off one or the other.

He went, he can’t because he was a swallow. Well, you can, if you swallow well breathing, you check.

You can, it’s quite easy to, it’s quite easy to do that a little bit, went down the wrong way. And that’s what we mean is going back to having the wrong choice, you got the epiglottis, which shuts off one and closes the other box over. And that enables us to breathe or to eat. But it’s that sort of same journey that’s split into two walkways, when the windpipe goes down into the lungs alarms. So the lungs are our power. They are the kind of vehicle for the voice better. The thing that needs to be really working well. The breathing needs to be working really well for you to speak. If you’ve got a very shortness of breath and you My experience is if you have a bad anxiety attacks, or chest infection, or something that constricts your lungs, it’s really hard to speak

in, because it’s all about no

yoga practice voice. So

I’m not going to go into like really detailed anatomy because I don’t know if I was crying

to know is you’ve got your lungs in voicebox in resonating chambers. And then the last thing in order to produce clear speech, you’ve got what we call the organs of articulation, because the T and the x, yeah, so those things create meaning, but the breath and the vocal chords create sound. If we didn’t use your tongue or teeth or ellipse,

it would be nice. Because we’re not changing the shape of the sounds that comes out of it. And you’re going to be doing this in a minute. So right

off the top of this, and which I really loved when I found it, because this is a really specific and really focus, but it’s Maya Angelou, quote, people forget what you said, people will forget what you did, but people will never forget how you made them feel. So even though we’re talking really specifically here, are kind of overarching as this how can we have an effect on that coming in. And that’s the effect that we want to have this year for whatever practice, whatever kind of our intentions are, you know, real, we’re looking at ways of being more effective at having an impact on them, making them feel something or realize something or become aware of them. I think that’s a cool Keep in mind when we’re looking at this, that’s the goal.

What do you call it?

Long term planning.

Any questions about any of that just kind of quickly go through it, maybe look at it, maybe read it if you want to see if there’s anything that

needs to know cryptography, occasionally it will be second

to page three.

So I’m not going to go over those in detail, but you’re gonna hear again and again, again, if you have a look. Let’s go from the bottom up. So you have this white bit at the very lowest point, which looks like it’s just kind of behind the soffit of your of your upper belly. That’s the connective tissue of your diaphragm that attaches into the project. tissue around your spine and the connective tissue of your of your hips. So as muscles kind of runs all the way through the body, and then coming out the red stuff that comes up and kind of under the lungs that should diagram. So it’s a big dome shaped muscle that goes all the way through your body. If you were to cut me in half here, just under my ribcage and show you my torso, diaphragm escaping in each body opens up the way we’ll be scooping in and up into my chest. Okay, so I promise primary muscle for breathing. And if you want to get speech and if you want to teach people to breathe well, to really important muscle to understand and to work with in your practice. Most people grieve in a very shallow way. And you’ve probably heard this before from higher up in the lungs, and they don’t read diaphragmatic Lee. So it’s really important that we switch back to having fun. It’s one of the hardest things sometimes to take People, some people will just resist it and not get in for years, you know, it’s not something you can always, you know, swear it is how it works done takes time. You’ve got too long and quite big. So if you bring your fingertips to platforms, and collarbones to other things, longer workout where there are the levels kind of about a centimeter or two actually above there, back inside the body, but at the top of the labs that kind of pointy bits come up really high. And then if you bring your hands down to the bottom of your page, I know those strips and then kind of walk along the lowest rip up to the center, your diaphragm attaches around around the sort of the 10th Rep. So there’s a couple of floating ribs it doesn’t attach to but really low down in the body and go grab it back, maybe lean forwards Can you find the back of the rib cage probably a bit lower than you think. All the way around New attaches and all the way around to the spine.

Your lungs are like this bit

of the left you have less lung because you have a heart embrace, you have two lobes. And on the right you have three, slightly bigger lungs on the right hand side doesn’t really matter. It’s just interesting. And then it’s all encased in the rib cage so that you can look on the diagram. You’ve got your single your breastbone going down the middle, maybe just have a little fear of that come all the way down, you find where it ends in a soffit. Doesn’t feel very nice to fish in there. The M, the actual end of your breastbone is very flexible and movement brief. And the whole breastbone, we’re left with three. And then all of your rips equally are very flexible when they move with grief. So you can see on the diagram is the blue stuff. That’s cartilage. So we’ve got bones in yellow and blue stuff is cartilage and the cartilage is there so that the bonus can really move in Carthage is more flexible than bone. So called spiritual Allow us to really move quite a lot. There are a lot of space like an accordion. Yeah, for sure. So as you breathe in, they can spread out and really open. And as you breathe out, they can close again, and you’ve got muscles all in between the ribs. So that also helps spread the webs out when you breathe it. So what we’re gonna do is a little visual imagery of breathing. Using our hands. This is a Franklin method exercise, I want you to just sit comfortably upright. So on something around, you’re

gonna make a dome shape with your hands that comes up almost in between the nipples so it’s quite high. It’s quite high in the body, but it’s the diaphragm comes up like this, imagining that this is inside the body in the middle like this. So what we’re going to do is we’re going to breathe in, and we’re going to learn how to flatten them out.

And breathe out and let the diaphragm do shape move in and up. Good. do that a couple more times if you’d like to close the eyes. This is just to create an image of what’s happening as you breathe in. And as you breathe out, in,

you probably won’t feel it inside. You probably won’t feel the diaphragm dropping down, but it does and it flattens out in shape. And as you exhale, it drives backing pushes off. Just do one more.

Okay. So, relax now is to help nourish the

tissue exhale. So when you exhale, less air in your lungs, more apps, if you need to squeeze something like a balloon, or the air goes out, that’s what’s happening on your exhale. And you inhale, more air comes in, needs to be more space, the diaphragm moves down to pull along All right.

Any questions about that? That’s really wrong. Sometimes Sometimes it’s like difficult but sometimes not easy.

So, all the time my friend to move down in the body, something has to move out of the way. You’re packed full of organs, stomach, liver, kidneys, digestive system.

God, where memories Yeah. So in a packed in,

it all has to drop down and move forwards to allow the diaphragm to move down, which is why we instruct belly breathing. Breathe into your belly, which can’t be there. No, that’s a belly. Breathe into your belly. Belly moves forward, the abdominal muscles move down in a way the organs Tinkerbell and you can follow With a little bit of very movable the organs, they can move. And it’s I’ve heard people the lungs into that space.

So that makes sense. So let’s bring our right hand here. This is our diaphragm and our left hand in front of our lower bail and our apps. The same thing is affected with exercise. I’m just saying that because there are kids, who we talk about a lot when he does this, and that’s me very specific about and kind of in his work. So this is where I got it from, and that’s why I’m telling you.

So when you inhale, the bolts are hands representing your belly and your organs in your belly is going to move forwards and your top hand representing your doctor is going to come down. So it’s going to do that tip, lots of hands comes out, top hand flattens, and when you exhale, the opposite happens. You get dirtying up, and then the hand pops back in at the bottom. So inhale


in high

apps If


any questions at this point, if you haven’t got that, he will go over it again a few times, I’m sure. I’m happy to send a link to our Franklin’s video on this. Anyone know why kids can do it?

while I was doing this, I would set up a detention and a repetition of breathing a certain way. So your muscles that breathe up here get more dominant, these muscles get more relaxed, more weak, and then they don’t. And if you if you’re tense or you’re anxious, same thing, you tend to break hind chest if you don’t, because your belly is tight, tension in the Gulf, you can’t breathe can’t move. So if that becomes your habit, that’s how you breathe and then changing your habits like anything, takes loads of patience, loads of repetition.

If you were working

with someone

who does have

conditions, or anything like that, in terms of that instruction, you’re still giving that instruction at minimum insufficient ization, and if they don’t actually do anything different in the body, but the visualization is that everything drops down and relapses as they breathe in the new room, not neurologically, it’s gonna make a better connection to those muscles, and it will benefit them in Well, you also can ignore it. And just keep going. It’s easier to feel the betting rising and your life back. Because all you have to stabilize your core muscles are switched off so you can let go, and that’s part of the sleep. If you’ve watched my buddies, they read everything that they know and agree that was low. You know, you can really set people synchronous, they’re not consciously tightening or holding their

spirits up. Considered

to make them better

to try and let them do more with their lives. So actually, it was happening there’s no negative it’s positive. really gentle take the time

off about it, you know, don’t make it

But the interesting thing

was reading somewhere.

Yes. Not mode.

So what about having apps and flatbed

and that’s really terrible for you. Also, and it’s gonna create breathing like this automatic breathing is proven to lower levels of cortisol, which is the stress They

basically raise your happy hormones and they feel like that’s the parasympathetic nervous system, which

is a great way to

see what’s happening. And also your you’re going to take work today. And it was it was your diaphragm and interface attaches to the Sunday, flexing muscles. And if your diaphragm is tight and hip flexor versus tights can affect diaphragm types can affect your hips. So breathing from your head is actually a brilliant thing to do. Get releasing can really help

the soul Connect there are muscles that lift up when you breathe


time but if you have tight neck around a good pitch to move because it should. So again, it’s going to impact breathing.

It’s really interesting how important breathing is for everything. But for us teachers knowing that that’s the key to having a really lovely voice. Effective voice is so great because you could do pranayama every day and be like,

man, everything, my stress, you know, I’m taking all my boxes all at the same time. Okay, so wasted about paper flow control posture. Turn off center is the posture for good. Three things, let’s do

do have a nice distance. So we

don’t want to put too much tension. So, I know you’ve had asked me to put up all the legs, but let’s just have a softness in the

pelvis to be kinda neutral. So just have a play with tilting the pelvis forward and backwards and see if you can find Kind of middle ground and a really nice way that’s really helped me with my pelvis is imagine that your pelvic floor is resting right up on top of your femurs, your leg bones just kind of bouncing nice and evenly there. It’s not tilting forwards on them. It’s not tilting back. So one of the reasons why yoga teachers don’t teach tough tailbone anymore, because it makes people tilt their pelvis in which direction you know, you know which direction to leave, which then puts lots of strain on the front of the hips and then the breathing and everything else. Okay, so we want a nice neutral pelvis. Okay, that’s how about oranges relaxed, we’re not turning off Honda This is it’s just done because it is a place that opens the test a little bit more. But actually, what you’re seeing on students is this happens, which is tension. So just be very cautious with that. Sometimes I just instruct him to show his nice and relax but yes, she will progress in the chest. So what I’d quite like to teach is a sense that their heart is floating around. Pick up, just like another comedian. In heart, it’s just like pick up a little bit. And there’s like a nice broadness across the shoulders and you can construct generally draw right out of the shoulder blade, especially if someone is very rounded forward, and they’re very collapsed in front of the body, but gentle, gentle, soft, and the head really nicely balanced on top of the spine. So you know, we instruct slightly tucking the chin in because most people do this to put weight but everyone with the head back of it, because most people do this. So if you just find it a nice comfortable place, when the head is balanced on the spine, you start these muscles of the neck of soft,

which is kind of have a little play around See if you can find a comfortable place to be in might not be comfortable if it’s not your normal posture. So if you are used to this, and you do this, you might be all as tense because your muscles have got to change in order for you to be in the right place and it will take practice, but try and find a nice place, relax the jaw or open the lock the door and we’re going to That, maybe you own

it relax, and then let the bottom jaw hang away from the top jaw. So this space in the back it

lacks the tongue in the mouth. Okay?

So what we’re doing when we’re standing like this is we’re opening the front of the body, we’re allowing the lungs to be long and open. And when we’re allowing, I always quick look at the belly to be that soft, especially if you’re teaching breathe in the know. When we’re starting to move. We’d like to kind of find a little bit of mula, Bandha, Giovanna, which is fine, but be very wary again of teaching. Always home with a bundle, a bundle, because if you always teach that,

then people are gonna have trouble breathing.

You know, I’ve just told you when you inhale, everything relaxes out. So people go, Hey,

I got this really weird instruction that kind of screws people’s minds up and even if they don’t know the nervous system, it’s gonna be cool. So, move on, do a dry under, trying to cheat with a breath. And then we’ll come up probably come back to that at some point but make sure that this isn’t too tight here. And then just see come back to this little shape. Right hand on top left hand by the belly, we just did. So we’re going to handle we’re going to take the bottom half who was and flatten out the top half. So based on the stick out, I mean exhale, the reverse tend to happen. In

any rising x hands, I can use up any jewels in

income die from the lowest value, the comms bullets.

X is a

little bit longer and how 123 x how 1234 again, 412301 See, three, six in one sleeve. Throwing up names for

six x 123456. Again 6123

by six x. See

what else

you got your diaphragm, the ABS belly, what else moves especially when you’re taking a deeper longer back whereas you feel short shouldn’t really move but you will have a little bit the ribcage. So in a very subtle, where is the question Where’s the other big movement happening?

Yeah, there is a softening on the inhale and then drawing it on the exhale stars.

Yeah, embrace what we routes checks that are in your house to the routing to the cage. And now it’s time for you to see if you could direct your breath into your hands and move your rip age out as you inhale, and then back in as you exhale. So just try that, see if you can find the movement. I always quite like to do this with a broad or like it’s fighting over top because you can always push into that or you could put a strap around and and breathe into the strap so you can feel that when you inhale, especially breathing deep and so for six breaths, so everyone breathe out and breathe in for 123456 and then exhale 123.

And anyone who don’t feel any movement,

they won’t find a heart.

Some people do, they have no movement in it. cage, your practice of yoga has probably given you the ability to feel that and to find that you can carry into the rib cage with your diaphragm quite still. So your lungs again more outwards and cambree into your diaphragm without making your ribs. So that the kind of tumors but our nice full yoga breath and a good diaphragmatic breath will be both. So it will be diaphragm menu down, ribcage expanding, you know tiny lift in in the clavicles for the shoulders stay relaxed. That makes sense. Am I going too fast? Okay. All right. So the key to projecting your voice is breath.

projection means that your sound travels

because the mechanics of your voice is that your sound waves are created in your larynx new voice box and then carried on the breath. So if you not breathing, hopefully, and when you’re teaching for the first time, or you’re new to teaching, and I came back to teaching, you know, not that long ago, and I was teaching for Laura, and mark your teacher for 12 years in schools and yoga teachers since 2009. It still affects me. So it’s really common that you will find if you’re nervous breathing is hard, and therefore projection and confidence with your voice. So it’s, it’s like, okay, let’s sit down again.

I think when we’re doing the math class as well, your

accuracy exercising.

Absolutely. I mean, you when you’re teaching vinyasa you notice so especially if it’s a class that we did this morning, so hard to find the moments come up with your mat, or if it’s a more creative class that you need to kind of be doing to remember for some reason, I sometimes can’t just talk because I’ve got Where you have to do it cost us a bit more half that gets much more spacious, then you’re going to have time to breathe harder to teach. So posture really important. Great because we can practice tell us so now we can practice good posture and although you’re gonna develop better muscular control of the diaphragm and into crosstalk between the red muscles is also going to help. And that’s practice that’s pranayama. That’s breathing exactly like they just don’t prolong the periods of time breathing into different spaces, etc. And, and warmer. Warm up is really important. So like any muscles, your vocal parts need to be one. If they are hold, you might notice in the morning, you wake up and a lot of gravity so a couple of days. I was like

yes, I can just use my first grade easiest retirement. Yeah. For the Voice vocal cords with at all.

So you need to own them up like you would warm up your body. And, and it’s really easy to walk them out probably the best way is coming

across this gentle You know, I think when people pick up voices seismic empirically online and you get some singing exercises, they’re great, but you know you’re suddenly going ah and it’s like the first thing in the morning you know your vocal to be like what would you get up to you know how did you go straight to go straight in the morning.

So I have to say boys, so we need to warm up the vocal folds warm up the muscles of the neck warm up the body space and the body parts and then all of a sudden that voice will be like

this way. And yes, and then relaxation is the last one. If you Common Sense says it will just be more natural in webpage Think about it. So if you go to teach a class you know do some sun salutes before the students get there especially when first start teaching you will find it really helps with your you know everything with your abilities help, like I say is once you get past some students arrive early. So kind of in your car

no idea. I don’t see my backpack sizes in my car. If I guess if I teach at 930 in the morning, that’s the earliest I teach there. No you

ma Ba ba ba Oh, seems the radio

anything like that. It really makes you feel better. throws up a bit tension really good. So let’s do some warm up again. And we can

be a little bit more than get this cup people start so definitely too much about me. types are

nice and last legs nice and relaxed shoulders nice and open the front of the body. So we’re gonna, we’re gonna use our voice we want to have this spaciousness here, this nice neutral posture. So Can everybody do it?

If you can’t do that, then that’s fine. You’re just gonna hum because we’re gonna harm but you’re gonna come and try and beat the sound to the lips, have the lip stop and see if you could find a tingling feeling in your lips when you have

questions down towards the end, without cheating, as always.

Voting during the individual accidents Yeah.

That’s the alternative if you can’t let the trail So a really really good way of warming up into the trails because the lips are going up they’re getting the like the muscles are getting a bit of work your nervous systems go all we have it so we can use them in Sorry, it’s like all Wakey wakey. I was just at blood flow, but Tom reckons That’s a lie. In anything, you don’t ever improve blood flow, doing anything massage yoga, it doesn’t happen. I’ll give that to you. And you could talk and someone could do it. But I’ve just been very cautious of saying it now. I think it’s a nice image or workflow, but it might not actually be correct.

Apparently under like, it might I don’t know you have to ask Tom but apparently it does some recent studies and blood flow doesn’t actually change

when you run it

muscle. Astro I’m not I’m passing it around.

It’s very interesting because I would have said, Oh, you never really increasing blood flow before Tom said to me, sure. This is something look at it and I don’t know.

Using your muscles, you need more oxygen to work. Yeah.

efficiency in exchange is improved. So obviously you’re up to you’ve got more oxygen in your blood and it’s more effective at about putting oxygen inquire needs to be not necessarily more blood. So why is your heart rate going to be identical

to an area necessarily.

We’ll play with

Toby’s a real geek, all the latest bits of research. And so when I wrote an article about something and asked him to be editor, he was not a

good fit doesn’t actually change said, Oh, really. So let’s first pick up interesting time later. And so Nick trills, we’re going to sing at home, up and down in the middle range of our voice. So we’re not going we’re not we’re more of the guy in the

And so what we’re going to do is lecture so let me show you what it’s gonna be like. So

excited about loving,

wonderful, attractive person.

But even if they’re up and down, and I want to try to slide so what we’re not doing is go Ah, like I said the guy

like look slightly, but what’s happening? Okay, so we’re going to start I’m going to use my hair and so then I might go up a bit and go down a bit, a little bit quicker. I’m down a bit and we’re just trying to follow me all with the lips and fizzing or liquid trails. So nice, deep diaphragmatic breath


so that one is a great way to voice chat. You can do anything.

It’s just really easy when talking to Paul.

It’s really easy. It’s really good to you and you can have anything even have any to nice and gently. Yeah.

anything, just comment and it doesn’t matter what it says it doesn’t matter to the best thing in the world you know? It’s just that making the most portfolios work a little bit gently warming them up. So that’s really what it shows I’ve created missing your English sheets. What else was I gonna do? Okay, so then after that you would start to opt in to kind of delve into calming, maybe some literature’s nice one is Tony Phillips and

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