14 Nov 2014

Singing Lessons: 5 Tools to Relax Rib Tension and Sing with More Freedom


Are you singing from a state of “Lockdown”?

Are you breathing in, holding the ribs, and then producing sound? If you are feeling rib tension or rigidity while you sing, then you may be suffering from what I call Lockdown.

And, it may be negatively affecting the freedom of your voice.


Internal Intercostals - Image By: Anatomography
Internal Intercostals – Image By: Anatomography
External Intercostals - Image By: Anatomography
External Intercostals – Image By: Anatomography



With two layers of intercostal muscles and pliant cartilage, the ribs are incredibly flexible. When you take in an easy belly breath and allow the ribs to expand with your inhale, the ribs may naturally stay expanded until full exhale. Allow for the rib-cage expansion, as forcing or holding it may be counter-productive for your vocal production.


When I sense that a student has rib tension, I have great success in freeing-up air flow and the voice with the stretches I share in the above video… take a look and try them out for yourself. 


Your entire body is your singing instrument. Take time to warm-up you body as well as your voice – remembering to always add sound to the movement. Watch the above video, and in the comment section below, let me know how the stretches work for you. (If you have back or neck problems please consult a doctor before doing these stretches.)


And, if you have a rib stretch that you love, please share it in the comment section below. We all can support each other on our journey to singing with freedom.

Until next week…

Rejoice In Your Voice™!

xoxoxo Tricia 


P.S. Would you like to study voice? I offer lesson in-studio or on Skype. Email me today to set-up your free 30-minute voice lesson. I will give you helps tools specifically for your voice and we will decide if it is a good fit to work together.

Email: TriciaPine@RejoiceInYourVoice.com






One comment

  1. These are brilliant, thank you! Some other useful ones: 1. standing, stretch one arm over and above your head, towards the opposite corner of the ceiling so that your ribcage is curved and expanded – hold, and breathe or sing/hum into your ribcage. Repeat with the other arm. 2. Pretend you’re hugging a giant beach ball or tree trunk, hold, breathe into your back. 3. Stretch your arms to the side and out, like welcoming the sunrise in the morning. 4. Pretend you are sipping a drink with a straw, take long or little staccato sips while stretching and expanding your ribcage – using a real straw is also great!


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