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20 March 2013

Fa Is Indeed a Long, Long Way to Run

I am a professional public speaker. No, I don't travel the lecture circuit commanding the big bucks, but much of my job involves speaking in front of other people, be it in the classroom or at academic conferences. We academics often forget this. For those of us for whom teachings is the major part of our jobs, it might be a bit easier to remember. How many of you have found your throat hoarse at the end of a long day of teaching? Surprisingly, in the long term, this can lead to damage to the vocal cords, but even the short term discomfort can be annoying. The solution? vocal warmups! Yes, that's the weird noises that singers make before they perform. For those of us not trained in the performing arts, the thought of doing a vocal warmup can seem intimidating and embarrassing. Believe me, I with you, but I've found that just 10 minutes or so of this stuff in the car during the morning commute can make a huge difference. A search on YouTube will bring up several free examples, and there are several commercially available products on Amazon and from other retailers. (I'm happy to share the name of the product I use via email.) It's not an overnight cure, but I've found it invaluable.


  1. You're just belting out songs from The Sound of Music, aren't you?

  2. Those happen in class, not the car. ;)