She’s taking throat singing to a new realm. It’s a great chance to see a world class group- they are the leading non-classical string quartet in the world.
If you are looking for a new way to heal your body, mind and spirit, then Tuvan throat singing is the practice for you. This is an ancient tradition from Siberia uses deep breathing techniques that can relieve stress, improve focus and increase awareness of one’s self.
In this blog post we will explore how Tuvan singing can help with personal growth in many different ways including: physical health benefits, mental benefits and spiritual benefits.
What is Throat Singing?
Throat-singing, a guttural style of singing or chanting, is one of the world’s oldest forms of music. For those who think the human voice can produce only one note at a time, the resonant harmonies of throat-singing are surprising.
A singer can produce two or more notes simultaneously through specialized vocalization technique taking advantage of the throat’s resonance characteristics.
By precise movements of the lips, tongue, jaw, velum, and larynx, throat-singers produce unique harmonies using only their bodies.
Origins of Throat Singing
The open landscape of Tuva allows for the sounds to carry a great distance. Tuva is a predominantly rural region of Russia located northwest of Mongolia. Singers use a form of circular breathing which allows them to sustain multiple notes for long periods of time.
With their singing, Tuvans imitate sounds of the natural surroundings—animals, mountains, streams, and the harsh winds of the steppe.
How To Start Tuvan Singing?
Musicgrotto.com sheds light in detail:
Relax Your Jaw And Lips
Hold your mouth open about half an inch and let it relax. A tip can be to simultaneously listen to a recording of a cello playing a D note and sing “oo” in the same tone. Breathe out for an extended period while doing this. Kind of yoga-like.
Make An R Or L Sound With Your Tongue
Making these sounds naturally pushes your tongue towards the pallet of your mouth. For this process, you need to keep your tongue just away from this position, slightly below the roof of your mouth.
Sing A Low Base Note In Throat Singing
Move Your Tongue Between An R And L Shape
This is where it gets a little tricky. While holding this note, move your tongues’ base between the R and the L shape. Try to keep the tip of your tongue touching the roof of your mouth.
Change The Shape Of Your Lips
Now try doing this while changing the shape of your lips as though you are saying two sounds; E and U. The sound is like saying “see you”. The change in your lips’ shape is what changes the resonance of the sound produced.
Now Put It All Together
You may need to play around with your tongues positioning for throat singing, as we are all slightly different.
Amazing Benefits of Throat Singing
Physical Health Benefits
Some people report a feeling of well-being when they sing this way, in addition to increased energy levels and greater lung capacity.
Singing also stimulates the secretion of hormones related to feedback loops in the blood-lung pathway, including substances like adrenaline which increase oxygen.
Mental Health Benefits
Here are some potential benefits of Tuvan Throat Singing:
- increased self-esteem
- reduced levels of stress hormone cortisol
- release of calming hormones like serotonin
- better sleep quality
- less pain and fatigue from injuries and illnesses
The healing benefits are attributed to an increased level of vibrational frequencies during throat singing compared to normal speech patterns. Singers especially enjoy a sense ‘healing coolness’ followed by warmth resulting from these vibrations.
Furthermore, some say that both spiritualism and soothsaying are held close to these practices most often when undertaken by shamans instead of layman folk music enthusiasts.
Mongolian nomads perform Khoomei, a type of throat singing in a variety of social occasions, from grand state ceremonies to festive household events, during herding, and inside the yurt to lull babies to sleep. Traditionally, Khöömei is transmitted orally from bearer to learner, or via master-to-apprentice.
Have you tried this form of singing yet? Check out the tutorial video. Let us know, how do you like it in the comments.