Types of training
There are multiple ways to get started with voice training.
Self study? Of all the YouTube videos, online courses and books, which approach will work best for you?
Working with a teacher may seem like the obvious solution, but the coach or class needs to be the right fit.
It can feel like trial and error, and all the options may even prevent you from starting at all!
I can’t give a guide that works for everyone, but I can tell you about how I help my clients get started on their voice and speech journeys.
The first steps
To get started with voice training, begin with your goal.
Typical goals I hear from my clients:
- to get understood clearly first time
- to get heard more easily
- to speak in a less rushed way
- to no longer run out of breath
- to sound more interesting and interested
- to trust their voice more
- to work towards a particular pronunciation or accent choice
Once we’ve defined the goal, we get started with the voice and speech training exercises that make the biggest difference most quickly.
Layers of training
One layer of exercises can lead to another, with discoveries along the way.
There’s often preliminary work: tension release can help free up the breath, which helps you access the full power of your voice.
For pronunciation work, some breath and voice foundations can help make new sounds more accessible and sustainable. A little-known fact is that accent work is a whole-body thing! As I often say: the mouth does not float alone!
After you get started with voice training, you may experience many beginnings.
Maybe you’re reading this because you did some voice training months or years ago and are wondering how, or if, to come back to it.
Maybe your goal has changed over time. I see this a lot in longer-term clients who return to me over the years with slightly evolved goals each time. Across the board, it benefits them to refresh and integrate the basics, which only serves to strengthen and serve the new objectives!
I have had clients who once worked on pronunciation returning to me to do overall vocal confidence work, and vice versa.
One-to-one training should be an ongoing discussion and refinement of goals, which can be approached from multiple angles.