Benefits of Singing in a Choir

Many people would rather die than be caught singing in front of a congregation in a choir. Many secretly sing to themselves in the bathroom but wouldn’t group up. However, several studies show that there are many benefits that come with singing in a choir. Whether it’s your church choir or a choir dedicated to singing specialized songs, some of the benefits associated with singing in a group include the following.

Better emotional health

Studies show that people singing in a choir experience release of chemicals from the brain. These chemicals include dopamine which is a chemical associated with feelings of happiness and wellness. Another chemical released is endorphins which help to provide pain relief. Serotonin is another chemical released by the brain when one sings in a choir. This chemical gives a person the feeling of contentment and euphoria. Oxytocin is another chemical released by the brain when you sing in a choir. This chemical is a stress manager and also promotes the feeling of bonding and trust between you and members of the choir.

Better listening skills

When singing in a choir, you get the chance to listen to other voices sing. This in turn prompts you to tune your voice to blend in with other voices. By training your ear, brain and voice, you are able to develop better listening and communication skills which will come in handy in social interactions.

Better mental health

Studies show that singing in a choir will promote better mental health. The release of the aforementioned chemicals from the brain helps to keep the brain healthy. In addition, practice sessions to memorize a number of songs to perform promotes better memory. A choir member will also promote better metal health as he or she tries to tune the voice to complement other voices in the group. This takes a lot of mental concentration.

Better cardiac health

Studies show that people singing in a choir are likely to have better heart health than solo performers. The singers heart rates tend to slow down as they start a performance. Their heart rates then get in sync as they continue with their performance. The reason for this is that besides singing together, members of the choir have the same breathing rate and synchronized heartbeats when singing the same song.

Improved social skills

Joining a choir gives you the opportunity to work with people with similar interests in music. Similar interests make it easier to socialize and open up. It also gives you a sense of belonging and bonding. Singing in a choir also helps you build your self confidence. Performing solo can be a daunting task for most people. However, if you perform in a group, you are able to build your self confidence slowly.

Meet new people and visit new places

Like other performers, choirs often get invitations to perform in different places. If you love travelling, the choir is one of the best ways of getting free rides to new places while doing what you love.

Singing Tips for Beginners

Music is food to the soul. If we don’t enjoy listening to others sing, we want to sing. Many people have often thought about taking up singing as a hobby or career. Singing is actually good for your overall health. It can help boost memory and promote cardiac health. Just singing can be easy, but singing perfectly is a blend of skill, passion and talent. It can take years for a singer to get the “right voice” so practice and patience are necessary. If you are just beginning in a singing career, here are some tips.

Get a voice coach

Many people are led to believe that they have the perfect voice for singing just from the way they speak. Yes, you might have a voice perfectly suited for ballads but, remember that singing and talking are two different actions. Singing requires mastery of the voice such that you can control its highs and lows creating different sounds. That’s where a voice coach comes in. the voice coach is skilled in the art of training would be and professional singers how to control their voice. They have an ear for different sounds.

Some of the advantages of hiring a voice coach include the following. First, you will be able to learn different breathing techniques that are used while singing. Second, you will be able to find “your voice” faster than if you were training yourself. Third, you will be able to learn more about music in general plus be on your way to building a network of contacts.

Keep the body hydrated

Have you ever tried talking when you have a dry mouth? The result is usually something between a croak and a whisper. Guess what will happen if you try to sing with a dry mouth. Keeping the body hydrated keeps the vocal cords lubricated allowing your voice to be clearer. Taking tons of water will help. Some of the things to avoid before a performance include caffeine, smoking and alcohol which dehydrate the body.

Practice and perform

A great way to practice is finding a practice song. Try finding a song that will challenge your vocal cords. Memorize the song and practice until you can sing like or even better than the songs original performer. Once you’ve perfected this, find another song for practice.

On the performance part, sing in front of people. For starters, sing in front of your voice coach. The feedback will give you confidence to perform in front of other people. Since your aim is performing in front of your fans, then you should start building your self confidence early on in your career.

Get emotional

All great music performers are actually the leading characters in their songs. They tie emotion to the vocals such that the listener isn’t just listening, they also “feel” the song. When performing, think of yourself as part of the theme in the song and act it out with emotion. Your listeners will appreciate this.

Rest the vocal cords if it hurts

Overworking your vocal cords in the early stages of your career can strain them causing pain. If this happens, stop singing for a while and rest the vocal cords. When confident you can sing again, don’t strain them too much.

Taboo and bowel movements

Bowel movements aren’t really a good conversation piece anywhere for a small talk or during dinners. There is an unwritten taboo about it thus makes people think they’re the only ones who suffer. It’s ironic that you’re in pain and you can’t tell or rant on people about it. I’ve had three kids and I’ve never thought of sharing my diarrhea during pregnancy, more about this issue can be read here, with friends or co-workers. I feel that a memory like that should merely be kept as a secret, but the doctor kept on asking me about my bowel movements as it was due to medical reasons and then I asked him if it was dangerous to me and my baby. I learned that it wouldn’t do any harm to my baby, but my doctor advised me to call him whenever I suddenly feel fewer fetal movements along with diarrhea that lasts longer than twenty-four hours as it might lead to dehydration.

What I’ve known was diarrhea is a condition wherein we undergo fluidity in fecal elimination. The stool usually turns into green color because the food moved through the intestines too quickly as bile didn’t have time to respond and assist in digestion. It can be induced by parasites, virus or bacteria. There is really no better way to cure such a disease other than releasing all the toxins causing it. What we want to observe out for is the risk of dehydration since it keeps on flushing out excess liquids and electrolytes from our body in turn, giving us body malaise. Symptoms of dehydration include dry mouth and mucous membranes, little or no urination and sunken eyes. Keep in mind that when it happens, we simply need to get some rest and make sure that we take in more fluids and electrolytes than what we’re releasing out with our stools. In the meantime, we also have to eat slowly with smaller portions and avoid eating fatty and greasy foods.

Even my kid had a fair share of taboo about bowel movements. One memory takes me back when he was only 2 years old. He was always a happy and talkative kid, but I observed him for a week, he seems to be grumpy, quiet and always lacking appetite even if the prepared food is his favourite. I asked him what’s causing him to be not in the mood, but he just keeps telling me nothing. I’d seen him frequently nursing his tummy so I called his pediatrician to consult my son’s case. The doctor asked me how was his bowel but unfortunately I’d been fairly busy working so I just see my son every evening and on weekends. I rang up my son’s nanny to ask and she told me that he hasn’t pooped in days. I had the relief of knowing the culprit causing my son to be grumpy and not his usual self, it was toddler constipation, you can read more about it at www.commondigestivedisorders.net. I brought my son to the doctor in the morning and was prescribed with a mild laxative for him to take. He was also advised to drink more fluids, eat more fiber enriched foods and have a time for him to be active to improve his peristalsis. I trust this won’t take place again as no mom wants her son to experience pain.

Hello Mr. J

It’s very sad to learn that my dear, old music mentor, Mr. Johnson is diagnosed with Neutropenia. There are rumours that he is terminal, but I don’t want to believe that. I tried to research more about neutropenia and neutropenic precautions to divert my attention but I can’t. I’m just too emotional for now to visit him in his home and I don’t want him to see that. It will never be the same without him.

Mr. Johnson is my first music mentor outside my home. He taught me many things like reading notes, reading music sheet signs and playing instruments like guitar, and piano. I was always excited when he’s teaching. I don’t know why, but I just love music. I remember the first time I met him. I just transferred to this new school and I don’t know anyone yet. I was in middle school and I was stuck in the hallway with my large backpack holding a piece of paper containing my assigned classroom. I saw a thin, tall man in a brown suit. He was holding a dark brown briefcase and lots of papers on his other hand. He came near me and asked if I am lost. I told him that I don’t know where my room is because I just transferred. He read my room assignment and accompanied me. I was so thankful to him wondering who he was and if I’ll ever see him again.

Our first subject was English which lasted for almost 2 hours. As the English teacher left the room, I heard a familiar voice talking. After a few minutes, there was the man who helped me. I was startled as he introduced himself as Mr. Johnson or Mr. J. He’s going to be our Music teacher for the whole year. As excited as I was, he started calling pupil’s names for attendance. He finished calling all my classmates but me. I raised my hand and he let me stand up and speak. I told him that I wasn’t called. He asked for my name and jotted it down on a piece of paper. He smiled and told me it’s okay.

Mr. J had different way of teaching. He makes his students focused and interested with the subject he’s teaching. He always makes everyone involved and engaged. We often sing songs that everyone liked. It was really fun learning with him like when he brought in his guitar and taught us simple chords like G, A7, C, G. It was amazing that with only 4 chords that he played, we made a beautiful music. He even let the class made the lyrics. It was so much fun. Since that first day that I met him, he made me love music even more.

I’ve tried to visit him without being emotional but I can’t. I knocked on the door and Mrs. J opened. I was in tears. I saw Mr. J smiling at me as he was sitting on his comfy chair. I hugged him so tight. He said it’s okay. I tried to calm down as they told me what happened. I really missed him so much. I’ll really make time to visit him more often.