My vocal teacher notices quite often that I have a closed throat when singing. My problem is I don't have the physical awareness to know when my throat is open or closed. What are some techniques to help develop awareness of how open or closed my throat is.

  • 1
    Surely your teacher can explain that better than anyone? Maybe try out a few other teachers. Commented Nov 14, 2014 at 12:22
  • Back in my clarinet days, I had a little sign over my stand that read "egg in throat" . Amazing how that helped me remember to keep my airway wide open. Commented Nov 14, 2014 at 14:28
  • @Dave My teacher did. I just want to get different opinions on how different singers approach opening the throat.
    – thank_you
    Commented Nov 15, 2014 at 4:20
  • @Carl Witthoft's suggestion is what my teacher told me, too (calling it 'hot potato in throat'). You could also practice in front of a mirror, as a tense throat is quite easily spotted from the outside.
    – user13400
    Commented Nov 17, 2014 at 10:01

1 Answer 1


One technique to relax the muscles in your throat (and open it up) is to keep your lips together and create a motorboat sound. You do this three times, each time until you run out of breath. It may sound silly but it does work. I had vocal cord surgery a couple of years ago to supplement a paralyzed vocal cord. When I had no voice I had developed a technique (unconsciously) that tightened up my throat so I could be heard -- but after the surgery I needed to stop doing this in order to not sound stressed. I went to a speech therapist and that was one of the exercises that she gave me to open up my throat, and relax my vocal cords.

I don't know how to have physical awareness, although I've tried. Using exercises like the one I mentioned should help open up your throat, if that's desired.

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