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Country Vocals Lessons: Vocal Warm Ups - HA! Engage Your Diaphragm

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Yeah, this is a great exercise to
really start engaging your diaphragm.
As we've mentioned before,
there's a lot of information that your
diaphragm is actually
an involuntary muscle.
So to engage your diaphragm
is a bit of a misnomer.
What we're wanting to do
is expand our ribcage,
fill our lungs with as much air
as possible, which involuntarily
makes your diaphragm lower
as it contracts because
it is actually in the mode it lowers
when your lungs fill with your air.
Your diaphragm naturally drops to
allow for more capacity in your lungs,
and it's the air pressure that's
actually pressing your diaphragm down.
And the pressure of your diaphragm on that
air gives you a nice bit of air pressure.
It's that air pressure that
you're going to control then
with all the muscles that are part of your
breathing apparatus, the muscles around
your ribcage down through your abdominals,
your pelvic floor.
That's another reason why mountain pose
is such a great stance, a great base
because it really gets your pelvic floor
engaged in this breathing process here.
So you're in a nice mountain pose.
Your spine is erect,
your shoulders are dropped and down.
You breathe in and
take a long slow deep inhalation.
Fill your lungs with air.
Let your diaphragm drop to
its most compressed and
contracted point to allow for
the maximum amount of air in your lungs.
And what you're gonna do is
expel air sharply by contracting
your abdominal muscles and your breathing
muscles hard with a single, loud ha.
You're not gonna grab with your throat.
You want your larynx and
your throat to stay relaxed and open.
So this is not something that you're
grabbing, ha, with your throat.
You are pushing with your
breathing apparatus muscles
which are all here and down.
Keeping all of this nice up here nice and
You're breathing in on a slow,
deep inhalation.
[SOUND] [SOUND] So I'm dramatizing
it a bit by really exaggerating
the movement of my abdominals.
But that's to illustrate that this
is coming from my abdominal muscles
contracting to cause that exhalation,
not from my throat.
[SOUND] [SOUND] There's,
this is actually another Yoga practice.
It's called Fire Breath.
It's a practice where you breathe
deeply in, fill your lungs.
And use your abdominal muscles
to sharply exhale [SOUND] and
control that exhalation [SOUND] so
you can separate the contractions of
the abdominals with the maintenance
of relaxed upper airway.
It's very challenging to make sure
that you are not doing this with your
throat but really doing it
with your abdominal muscles.
See if you can find the difference
where you breathe in and
you make the sound with your throat, ha!
[NOISE] I'm making
the [NOISE] with my throat.
Now I'm gonna do it with my abdominals.
once more.
Slow deep inhalation.