The Six Surprising Benefits of Singing
Singing is one of the most enjoyable activities we can do. As far as communication goes, singing is much more effective and enjoyable than a long speech, but did you know that it provides physical and mental benefits as well?
You may be surprised to know that at the same time you're singing along to your favorite song, your immune system is getting a healthy boost, and your brain is getting exercised as well.
Come with me now to explore more of the wonderful reasons to sing.
1. Singing Is Healthy for Us
Never mind that your voice may not have a professional and pleasing sound. Singing can help to promote lung development as well as promote oxygen to the blood system and the brain. When we sing we develop the lungs and purify the blood because we are completely emptying the lungs of used air and filling them deeply with fresh air. Our lungs never stop working for us. They carry oxygen to the blood and remove toxic gases 24 hours a day, everyday. This process works better as we learn to breathe by using the diaphragmatic muscle. Not only are we exercising our lungs as we sing, we are also exercising our heart.
I'd also like to emphasize how singing detoxifies our lymphatic system. Through the process of deep breathing, when we sing we are clearing the lymphatic system of toxins and thereby supporting our immune system.
Studies have show that singing increases endorphins in the brain causing us to feel good and even changes our emotional mood. So the next time you're feeling out of sorts give yourself a shot-in-the-arm by diving into a favorite song. Sing with gusto, confidence and joy!
Should I Sing Even When I Think I Can't?
2. Your Speaking Voice Will Sound so Much Better
Singing gives us a more pleasant, and more rich speaking voice. It even improves our speech which adds to the charm of the personality. Through voice lessons with a qualified teacher articulation is stressed which adds clarity to the speaking voice. Since we speak all day long why not save wear and tear on our over-used voice?
According to Dr. Louann Brizendine, clinical professor of psychiatry at the University of California, San Francisco, a woman speaks about 20,000 words a day. A man, on-the-other-hand, uses about 7,000. However, new studies according to Matthias R. Mehl, a psychology professor at the University of Arizona, states both men and women use an average of 16,000 words a day.
Whether we use 20,000 words each day or 16,000 words - the point is: When we learn to sing correctly we also learn to speak correctly.
3. Singing Provides a Workout for the Brain
The brain needs exercise like every other muscle in or bodies. We are actually exercising our brains when we sing because it strengthens memory and the power of concentration. exercise too. Learning new songs or memorizing the words to familiar songs strengthens the brain.
4. Can Singing Help Treat Pain?
As a long time professional singer and vocal instructor, I have personally witnessed how singing can heal. Not only have I managed my own chronic pain through singing, but I also witnessed an elderly man feed himself for the first time in years during one of my shows for the aged. After using his hands to applaud, he actually reached for the spoon sitting on the table before him and fed himself. All of the nurses were watching in disbelief.
Another example of the power of singing came to me while I entertained during an Alzheimer's Convention in Los Angeles. A lovely woman in attendance couldn't remember the names of her children, but as I sang the song "Let Me Call You Sweetheart" she began singing along completing the entire song by herself. Make no mistake about it, singing heals. Make singing a habit, and see for yourself.
Those who wish to sing always find a song.— Swedish Proverb
5. Singing Boosts Self-Confidence
Singing increases poise, self-confidence, and develops character through difficulties overcome such as learning to control the breath. Singing also brings contentment to us in a way that no other activity can.
6.Singing Improves Depression
Singing as a means of self-expression is a medium of release for pent-up emotions. Feelings are not judged when singing about them. Therefore a level of freedom is reached emotionally when we sing. Depression, anger and anxiety is reduced and in most instances completely gone.
How Often Do You Hum or Sing?
Express How You Really Feel by Singing
One of the healthiest things we can do for ourselves is to express our true feelings and let them out instead of bottling them up. Singing allows us this freedom. When we sing we aren't judged for our emotions. We can show anger, be sad, or expel a need and feel safe without worrying about being criticized.
Stop fretting about how you sound when you sing. You have a voice and it's meant to be used. Don't be embarrassed or frightened. Singing is your birthright!
© 2011 Audrey Hunt