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Dividing Time between vocal exercises and practicing songs

It takes me about 45 minutes to an hour to get through the exercises of Vol 3 (on a daily basis). However, I as a new band member I have a large number of songs I have to learn, and while I know Ken warms up for 1.5 hours/day and then sings, he is KEN! My voice does not have that kind of stamina without going hoarse the next day, even tho I concentrate on support and glottal compression.
1) How much time should I divide between vocal exercises and practicing actual songs?
2) I usually cut back the volume even more when I practice the songs, but then in singing them so lightly, I don't get a sense of how I will actually sing them when I perform. Advice?
3) Is it okay to cut back my exercises to 30 min, and if so, how should I divide Vol 3 exersizes so that I can at least get to all of them on different days?


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    bentkbentk Moderator, Pro, 2.0 PRO, 3.0 Streaming Posts: 1,650
    Hi Lina!

    Good questions, i think many here ask themselves about this. But first, you state that you can go hoarse when singing a lot. That is not really a stamina issue in the way we see stamina here at KTVA. Going hoarse is usually a sign that you are singing with too much volume and/or air. Or maybe 'squeezing' the throat too much. This is very common. I am not saying you are doing this, as i have no idea how you sing and do your exercises. However, going hoarse is not good, and you should never go hoarse from singing. You might feel 'tired' or a little burned out, maybe even some sensation in the throat the next day. But that should not inhibit your range or make you unable to sing at all. Stamina helps you hold out longer, and sustain longer phrases etc. which can be very tiring, but it does not make you go hoarse. Becoming 'tired' and going hoarse are not the same.

    I really do not mean to lecture, but i am confident that this is a very important topic.

    1. The amount of time you divide is really up to you. But i would recommend getting at least an hour practice in before singing, if you can. You will know what is too much after that, pace yourself. Applying the KTVA method to songs is another learning procedure.

    2. You can fully practice your songs the way you want them, as long as you use good technique. If you are working on new songs, you might want to do that lightly, maybe in a lower key, and figure out all the vowels first. But if you really want to practice a song, you should practice it the way you want to perform it, just with all the KTVA advice.

    3. I would really not recommend cutting back to 30 mins. 30 mins is the absolute minimum i would use for warming up before rehearsals, preferably 40 mins or so. It's the best to just do the whole of VOL3. Make sure you spend equal amount of time on bridging and chest stretching. There are other topics on the forum that go more in-depth about this.

    45 minutes to an hour is a pretty good time to get through VOL3, and that also takes stamina. There are specific stamina exercises in the program, you might have seen them. You could incorporate some of those if you seek more stamina. If you only have time for a few songs after that, then do those few songs. Maybe some other day you have more time. You just try and make do.

    I hope this was helpful for you!

    All the best,

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    HuduVuduHuduVudu 2.0 PRO Posts: 1,818
    On my heavy day of singing I spend two hours practicing (there are two hours worth of scales that I do). My throat doesn't feel sore at all. I am at the end very tired, and will usually crash for an hour or so. I used to feel the dry sore throat, but I have been able to move more of the work out of my throat and into my core (support) so that I singing doesn't bother my throat at all. I am getting more comfortable with this so that I think that soon enough I will be able to do three hours instead of two.
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    highmtnhighmtn Administrator, Moderator, Enrolled, Pro, 3.0 Streaming Posts: 15,359
    edited October 2018
    We all have to budget our time... and as long as we love singing, we need to do some real singing to give greater meaning to and get use from our training.

    But sometimes we rob Peter to pay Paul, and take away time from our exercises to give to band songs or sometimes just plain fun.

    Look at it this way. If we only have x amount of time to do Y singing tasks, we may have to prioritize. 30 minutes a day of KTVA workouts is WAY better than zero. And to do it like this (being that would amount to a proper warmup in a lot of cases) your band practice should go better with you being warmed up when you start band practice. Make sure you don't warm up too aggressively when you need to sing with a band. Save a little of your reserve for later.

    Your band work helps you to put your KTVA time to good use, and your song-singing is a good incentive to make you want to get better with your vocal exercises.

    You want both: Continue your lessons and exercises to keep improving AND do your duties as a performing band member/vocalist.

    If you cut back your vocal progress time, you lose the benefits of SOME of the progress you would have made, if you had the time to work out.

    Notwithstanding the aforementioned, singing at rehearsal, and EVEN MORE SO at a LIVE GIG forces you to jump your game up to "serious about it" and can help you to focus more on the necessity of spending more time developing your voice via your lessons and workouts. So all the more reason to try to "make-up for lost time" when you CAN take a few days for extended/makeup workouts.

    But always monitor, and err on the side of "easy does it" if you are having any volume/hearing the monitors issues that might cause your voice to wear down too quickly. Turn a volume knob on a mixer instead of trying to sing louder and louder to hear yourself. You will lose that contest.
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    LinaLina 2.0 PRO Posts: 77
    Thank you so much, great tips and insight!
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    Furious_PhilFurious_Phil Moderator, Pro, 2.0 PRO, 3.0 Streaming Posts: 1,421
    One addition I would add is that record yourself as you practice the band's material!
    Also record your rehearsals to see how you are doing in a live flow context. If the recorder is central in the hall, you'll also get an idea of where you sit in the mix :+1:
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