Breathing for Singing: My Favorite Quotes from Expert Teachers and Singers


I love to collect quotes from the most respected singers and voice coaches in history.

I especially love quotes about breathing for singing,— its importance, what it feels like, how to breathe correctly, and so on.

My own experience confirms what these experts say. Most vocal problems are caused by faulty breathing. You fix the breathing first to improve the fastest.

Yet, it's strange that specialized training for breathing and posture isn't taught by voice coaches. Fortunately, it is taught outside of traditional voice lessons. I'll share more about this in the future.

First, I want you to hear from the experts. I've placed a few quotes below, but you can download a pdf with many more.

It's 16-pages filled with wonderful quotes about breathing for singing. It's well-organized with a table of contents. I find it to be a great learning tool.

View and download the pdf of my favorite breathing for singing quotes.


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“Faulty singing is caused by awkward respiration. In fact, all bad habits of the throat are merely efforts of protection against clumsy management of the breath. The foundation of all vocal study lies in the control of the breath.”

“There is no doubt that the greater part of the difficulties encountered at a change of register, as well as the uneven tones within one and the same register, may be traced to faulty breathing.”

“These almost continual adjustments of lung volume, rib cage volume, and abdominal volume require a degree of skill unimagined by the neophyte singer and certainly taken for granted by the general public.”

“Of the three main methods of breathing, upper chest, rib and diaphragmatic, it is generally conceded that the best method for singing is a combination of the latter two.”

“Faulty diction, which is antagonistic to vocal legato (the unrelenting flow of tone), may be one of several debilitating cracks in the vocal edifice. It is often caused by that primary destroyer of legato: an insecure breath process. Legato requires mastery of appoggio.

Much impurity of vowels, blurring and smearing of phonemes into indiscriminate transition sounds, early anticipation of consonants or heavy leaning on them, exaggerated accentuation that attempts to mask a technique that does not allow easy articulation—all attest to an inability to maintain a coordinated and consistent flow of breath.”

“In the appoggio technique, the stomach is neither pushed out nor held in. The three main muscles of the lower abdominal wall— transverse abdominis, internal oblique, and external oblique— originate in the pelvic and hip regions. These muscles expand laterally during deep inspiration and assist in managing the breath for singing.”

“In learning to breathe it is well to think of the lungs as empty sacks, into which the air is dropping like a weight, so that you think first of filling the bottom of your lungs, then the middle part, and so on until no more air can be inhaled.”

“This feeling of singing against the chest with the weight of air pressing up against it is known as breath support, in Italian we have even a better word, appoggio, which is the breath prop or lean.  Never for a moment sing without this appoggio, this breath prop.”

“Torso Anchoring done well improves posture by elongating the spine and opening the chest. This enhanced posture allows the respiratory muscles to function more efficiently. A hunched, collapsed, compressed torso prevents freedom or release in respiratory movements.”

That’s all for now! I hope you find some value here. I’ll explain more soon.

warmest regards,

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